For this assignment, you’ll use the provided worksheet to break down, and operationalize the constructs included in each of your three research questions. A construct is an abstract idea, underlying theme, or subject matter that one chooses to study. These are often words or phrases that have a a generally understood meaning, but for research purposes, there is the need to further define, or operationalize, them.
For example, let’s say you have a research question that asks, “What is the effect of hunger on academic performance among children?” In this question, there are several constructs that would need to be operationalized in order to effectively answer this question. The first construct we need to operationalize is “hunger.” While we have general understanding of what hunger is, the way we define it can have a real effect on our results. If we operationalize hunger as simply, “the feeling of being hungry and wanting to eat,” this could include almost anyone at a given time during the day. Your sample could include the entire range of individuals from those who are malnourished and underfed to those who simply forgot to have breakfast that morning. However, if we operationalize hunger as, “a chronic undernourishment of an individual due to a lack or or scarcity of food,” this not only refers to a more severe typeof hunger, but also changes who you would want to include in a sample. Therefore, the way in which we operationalize our constructs/variables in the questions we ask can have a huge impact on the results you end up with.
Similarly, the construct of “academic performance” would need to operationalized. Would this be measured by a student’s average on specific or all grades across some or all subjects, one-time performance on a standardized test, or their mastery of a specific academic skill? Likewise, you may also want to further define “children.” Are you looking at a certain grade or age, a small range of ages/grades (something like 5-8 year olds or 2nd-4th graders), or all children (meaning birth to 12, or even 18, years old)? Who you include matters, so it is important to operationalize this construct to better get at what you want to know.
As you can see, the way in which you operationalize your constructs can completely change what you are asking, how you will measure it, the individuals you can include in your sample, and the results you’ll get. Therefore, for this assignment, you’ll want to pul out each construct you have in your questions and operationalize them into more specific and measurable terms. There is a good bit of freedmen this as you can choose how you want to operationalize things, but however you chose to do so should be thoughtful and intentional.
Once you have completed you worksheet, you can either submit your work via Canvas by the due date as a Word document that you have typed into or as a PDF with your hand written answers scanned in. Either works for me, so do what works best for you.