Posted: June 26th, 2015

# Discuss strengths and weaknesses of applying your results to, for example, another population, species, age, or sex

SOCIOLOGY CAPSTONE Research Question
Assignment 5
20 points
Submission and Formatting.
– First page with all your full name, assignment title, course number and date
– Subsequent pages with your last names and page number in the header.
– Save as a Microsoft Word (.doc/.docx) or Adobe Acrobat ( “.pdf ”) fil e with last
name/assignment (e.g. “Arxer-ResultsDisccussion.docx”).
Detailed Requirements (recommended length in parentheses):
A. Results (4-5 pages)
This section presents the statistical analysis of the data collected. It is often less than a page long. Statistical results are presented in Tables but are usually not discussed in this section. Discuss results in the Discussion section.
How to Proceed
Keep your hypotheses in mind while you write. Each result must refer to a stated hypothesis. Describe all results that are directly related to your research questions or hypotheses.
For quantitative research, start with hypotheses you were able to support with significant statistics before reporting nonsignificant trends. Then describe any additional results that are more indirectly relevant to your questions. Example:
As predicted, the results in Table3 show that household poverty significantly reduced individual levels of social capital, social closure, parental participation, and organized sport participation. Likewise, households with two biological parents had higher levels of social capital, social closure, parental participation, and sport participation. The three models in Table3 also show that households that had moved to a new neighborhood in the preceding 12 months had lower levels of all measures of social capital (the coefficientsrangedfrom0.14** to 0.33**). In line with the proposed hypothesis, educated parents participated more in the adolescent community while adolescents with educated parents were more likely to participate in organized sport.
●If you present many results (i.e., many variables or variables with many levels), write a brief summary, then discuss each variable in separate subsections.
● Use tables and figures to summar ize data. Include descriptive statistics (such as means and standard deviations or standard errors), and give significance levels of any inferential statistics. The goal is to make your results section both succinct and quantitatively informative.
● For each test used, provide degrees of freedom, obtained value of the test, and the probability of the result occurring by chance (p-value). Here are examples of the results of a t-test and an F-test, respectively: t(23) = 101.20, p < .001; F(1, 3489) = 7.94, p < .001.
For qualitative research, start with the direct interview quotes you were able to gather and that emerge in your coding process as the most significant before Example:
All the grandparents, except the pair of migrant workers who embarked on rural–urban migration more than a decade ago, had to relocate from their home town to Xiamen so as to take care of their grandchildren. The relocation had direct impact on the grandparents’ social network. Grandparents T who shuttled between Fuzhou and Xiamen described to me what it was like for them to be away from their friends, colleagues and neighbors in their home town.
Grandmother T: “Whenever I go back to my hometown, all my friends said they missed me…when I go back I would get to play badminton or poker games with my friends ”.
Researcher: “When you are in Xiamen you don’t have time for all these?”
B. Discussion/Conclusion (4-5 pages)
In this section, interpret your results by relating them to your research question or hypotheses. Use words to explain the quantitative or qualitative information from the results section.
Requirements
Discuss the results in relation to each hypothesis (quantitative) themes (qualitative. This is the most important part of the Discussion section.
Discuss possible explanations for your results. This part should follow from the predictions you made earlier based on possible outcomes of the study. Do the results agree or disagree with the ideas that you introduced in the Introduction? How do the results relate to previous literature or current theory?
Identify and discuss limitations in the experimental design that may reduce the strength of your results.
Generalize your results. This is where you tell the reader the extent to which your study is externally valid. Discuss strengths and weaknesses of applying your results to, for example, another population, species, age, or sex.
Identify follow-up experiments or studies. Introduce new ideas that your results suggest, and propose ways to test them
How to Proceed
question.
• Discuss how the results relate to the research question in general. Example: The key findings of the study is that low structural and cognitive social capital –
measured by the frequency of social contact with friends and neighbours and experienced
interpersonal trust – are both significantly associated with depression in older adults. These results are in line with the large body of research emphasising the strong link between social capital and mental health status across ages, as well as they add to the limited previous research on older adults taking both the structural and cognitive components of social capital into account (Almedon, 2005; De Silva et al., 2005).
• If you had a directional hypothesis and your results didn’t turn out as expected, discuss possible explanations as to why, including unanticipated shortcomings in the design, problems such as equipment failure, or even that the theory you tested may need modification. Show how your explanation accounts for the specific pattern of results.
In addition to the social capital variables, marital status and age showed to be
significantly associated with depression as defined in this study. Being single significantly increased the risk of depression compared to being married or cohabiting, and these findings correspond to previous studies showing statistically significant associations between depressive disorders and living alone (Adams, Sanders, & Auth,
2004). A possible explanation for this correlation could be that marital status is related
to important aspects of the individual’s social capital, such as the social contacts and the social support provided in everyday life. This assumption is supported by our finding that single, divorced and widowed people with infrequent contacts experience a higher risk of depression as compared to married and cohabiting older people. Our research would suggest that older single people are in better health position if they engage socially with friends.
• Discuss limitations of the experiment that could be remedied in future experiments. State the specific
reason for performing the next experiment.
• Avoid overstating the importance of your findings. Be modest rather than expansive. Avoid speculating beyond the data.
• Stay focused on the research question. Resist the urge to digress or to state glittering generalities just because this section is the most flexible one.
• Although you should acknowledge problems or weaknesses of your design, end the paper on a high note. Summarize the study’s strengths, conclusions, implications and/or ideas for future research.

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