Two-Group Experimental Designs: Definition & Examples

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  • 0:06 Two-Group Design
  • 1:10 Groups
  • 1:59 Assigning Groups
  • 3:27 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Natalie Boyd

Natalie is a teacher and holds an MA in English Education and is in progress on her PhD in psychology.

How does a researcher know if their treatment has an effect or not? In this lesson, we'll look at two-group experimental designs, contrast control and treatment groups, and examine random assignment and matched groups.

Two-Group Design

Rory is a psychologist, and he is interested in the effect of watching a popular science fiction show. He wants to know if watching the show will cause people to believe more in aliens than if they don't watch the show.

Experimental design is the process by which a researcher decides how to run a study. For example, Rory might decide to get a bunch of subjects and divide them into two groups. He presents the show to one group and doesn't present it to the other group. Afterward, he asks whether or not they believe in aliens. If the group who watched the show answers 'yes' more often than the group that didn't, he knows that watching the show will increase belief in aliens.

Rory has chosen a two-group design, which is when an experiment is done on two groups of subjects and the results are then compared. For example, Rory is going to compare the belief in aliens of two groups: those who watched the show and those who didn't. Let's look closer at the decisions Rory has to make in order to make his two-group design work.

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