# SMU Quantitative Analysis Study Discussion

Week 1 – Assignment: Examine Statistical Analysis within the Context of a Dissertation Topic:Instructions

For this assignment, you first will identify a topic of interest that

you might want to pursue research. You are not tied to this topic

when you reach the dissertation sequence, but it should be a

topic that you find interesting now and also relates to your

program and specialization.

Next, conduct a literature search using the NCU library to locate

two quantitative studies examining your selected topic and in

which the authors present statistical findings.

Once you have located your articles, you will prepare a short

paper using the following format:

Introduction to the selected topic of interest

Brief summary of first article

o

Include research question(s) and hypotheses, and general

findings.

Brief summary of second article

o

Include research question(s) and hypotheses, and general

findings

o

Include statistical tests used.

Synthesis

o

Specifically, compare and contrast the two articles, assessing the

types of statistical methods and analysis used.

Conclusion

o

Assess what approach you might take if you were to conduct a

study in this topic area.

Length: 4 pages not including title page and reference page.

References: Include a minimum of 3 scholarly resources.

Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the

ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide

new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your

response should reflect graduate-level writing and APA

standards.

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

Week 2 – Assignment 1: Organize Data:

Part1: Instructions

In this week’s assignment, you will complete a problem set in

which you address levels of data and types of variables. Answers

to the problems must be complete and written in a formal

narrative language. In addition, you will write a short essay

related to data privacy.

1. Explain what it means to say, “variables must vary.”

2. List and define the four levels of measurement (using examples)

discussed in this week’s introduction and resources. In your

opinion, which one or more is the most appropriate for

statistical analysis. Explain.

3. Compare and contrast the characteristics of continuous and

discrete variables. What is a common challenge of trying to

calculate statistics using discrete variables?

4. Identify the level of measurement for the following examples

and explain why you selected the level you did for each, relying

on this week’s resources for support:

a. Career field (e.g., accountant, production manager, etc.)

b. Temperature in Fahrenheit

c. A job satisfaction survey measured as “disagree, neutral, agree”

d. Total sales for a firm

5. Identify each of the following types of a variable (e.g.,

continuous versus discrete) and explain why you selected the

category you did for each, relying on this week’s resources for

support:

e. The number of workers in each department of a large

organization (e.g., workers in production, sales, accounting,

etc.)

f. The dollars of revenue earned during a fiscal year.

g. The number of software licenses available to employees in a firm

h. The average annual salary of middle managers of an

organization

Length: 3 pages not including title page and reference page

References: Include a minimum of 2 scholarly resources.

Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the

ideas and concepts presented in the course and provide new

thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your

response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA

standards.

Part2: Week 2 – Assignment 2: Interpret Graphs Using Excel

and SPSS

Instructions

In this week’s assignment, you will explore the different types of

graphs used to visualize data. Results from both Excel and SPSS

should be copied and pasted into a Word document for

submission.

Use the provided datasets for building one of each of the four

chart types below. For each chart, select a variable from the

provided dataset with a measurement level that is best

visualized by that chart type. Use APA style to label each chart.

Each graph must contain a narrative description of what it

represents and an interpretation of the image.

1. Pie chart

2. Bar chart

3. Scatterplot

4. Histogram

Length: 4 to 6 pages not including title page or reference page

References: Include a minimum of 2 scholarly resources. Be sure

to reference Excel and SPSS as they are resources for this

assignment, although not scholarly.

Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the

ideas and concepts presented in the course and provide new

thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your

response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA

standards.

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Week 3 – Assignment: Analyze Numerical Summaries of

Data Using Excel and SPSS

Instructions

In this week’s assignment, you will answer the following

questions using both Excel and SPSS software. Results from

these programs should be copied and pasted into a Word

document for submission.

For Questions 1 and 2 you will need to input the data provided

below into both Excel and SPSS. For Questions 3 and 4 you will

use the dataset files provided in the resources for this week

(Descriptive statistics, n.d.-a, n.d.-b).

1. Suppose that a quality assurance manager took a random

sample from a thread-cutting machine. The sample consisted of

18 bolts and the manager tested their tensile strengths. Results

from the sample, in tons of force required for breakage, are

given below:

2.20

1.95

2.15

2.08

1.85

1.92

2.23

2.19

1.98

2.07

2.24

2.31

1.96

2.30

2.27

1.89

2.01

1.93

a. Use Excel to calculate the mean, median, and standard

deviation for these data.

b. Use SPSS to calculate the mean, median, and standard

deviation for these data.

c. Use SPSS to create a histogram of these data.

d. Interpret these results and explain any differences you find

between the two software tools (Hint. The results should be

identical).

2. A manager of a food manufacturing company wants to

estimate the percentage of fat in one of its salad dressings. A

sample of 20 bottles was taken and the results are given below.

15.88

19.88

21.16

20.37

22.77

20.65

18.60

18.91

21.77

21.64

18.62

18.41

20.15

17.07

19.91

21.07

16.49

21.21

17.98

20.22

a. Use Excel to calculate the mean, median, and standard

deviation for these data.

b. Use SPSS to calculate the mean, median, and standard

deviation for these data.

c. Use SPSS to create a histogram of these data.

d. Interpret these results and explain whether or not it is honest

for the manufacturer to state that the fat content is 20%? Explain

your answer.

3. A manager is worried that her employees are not engaged at

work. She finds an employee engagement survey and

administers it to her workers. The individual scores are provided

in the dataset file.

a. Use Excel to calculate the mean, median, and standard

deviation for the employee engagement data.

b. Use SPSS to calculate the mean, median, and standard

deviation for the employee engagement data.

c. Use SPSS to create a histogram of these data.

d. Next, conduct an analysis of the “age” and “gender” variables

using the appropriate measures of central tendency and

dispersion. Use SPSS only. Also, create an appropriate graphic

for each variable.

d. Interpret the results for employee engagement, age, and

gender. Identify what you believe the next step should be in this

analysis.

4. A shop supervisor wants to understand his workers better. He

hires a consultant who tells him that he should ask employees

questions related to their lives if they feel comfortable

answering these questions. Please use SPSS to analyze the

following variables, create appropriate figures and charts, and

explain the results of each variable. Do not compare the

variables in this assignment.

a. Age

b. Model of car

c. Rent or own their home

d. Hobbies

e. How happy they are (on a five-point scale)

Length: 5 pages

References: Include a minimum of 3 resources (two of these will

be Excel and SPSS).

Your assignment should demonstrate thoughtful consideration

of the ideas and concepts presented in the course and provide

new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your

response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA

standards.

…………………………………………………………………………………

Week 4 – Assignment: Apply the Normal Distribution

Instructions

For this week’s assignment, you will present your answers to the

following questions in a formal paper format. Please separate

each question with a short heading, e.g., normal curve, bell

curve, etc.

Begin with a brief introduction in which you explain the

importance of normal distribution.

Next, address the following questions in order:

Describe the characteristics of the normal curve and explain why

the curve, in sample distributions, never perfectly matches the

normal curve.

Why is the bell curve used to represent the normal distribution?

Why not a different shape?

Why is the central limit theorem important in statistics?

What does the central limit theorem inform us about the

sampling distribution of the sample means?

Imagine that you recently took an exam for certification in your

field. The certifying agency has published the results of the

exam and 75% of the test takers in your group scored below the

average. In a normal distribution, half of the scores would fall

above the mean and the other half below. How can what the

certifying agency published be true?

Why do researchers use z-scores to determine probabilities?

What are the advantages to using z-scores?

Conclude with a brief discussion of how the concept of

probability might affect research that you might undertake in

your dissertation project. In other words, how would a basic

understanding of probability concepts aid you in analyzing and

interpreting data?

Length: 4 pages not including title page and reference page.

References: Include a minimum of 3 scholarly resources.

Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the

ideas and concepts presented in the course and provide new

thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your

response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA

standards.

………………………………………………………………………………

Week 5 – Assignment: Identify Analysis Tools in Published

Research

Instructions

This week you will locate three quantitative studies addressing a

topic in your area of specialization. At minimum, two different

statistical tests should be represented.

For example, you might search the literature for studies in

transformational leadership and you may find two that used

regression analysis and a third that used a t-test. For each

study:

1. State the null and alternative hypotheses (Hint. The authors will

note the alternative hypotheses, but you will have to infer the

null as those aren’t typically stated in published research)

2. Identify the statistical test used to determine statistical

significance (e.g., t-test, analysis of variance, multiple

regression, etc.).

3. Identify the test statistic, note it, and explain what it means

(e.g., t=3.47).

4. Identify the significance level used in each study

5. Identify whether or not the authors found support for their

hypotheses. Consider sample size and Type I and Type II error.

6. Explain the implications of each finding.

Identify whether or not the authors found support for their

hypotheses. Consider sample size and Type I and Type II error.

Explain the implications of each finding.

Length: 5 pages

References: Include a minimum of 3 scholarly resources.

Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the

ideas and concepts presented in the course and provide new

thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your

response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA

standards.

………………………………………………………………………………

Week 6 – Assignment: Interpret a Correlation Analysis

Instructions

For this assignment, you will use the six-step hypothesis testing

process (noted below) to run and interpret a correlation analysis

using SPSS. The following vignette will inform you of the context

for this assignment. A data file is provided in the week’s

resources for use in this assignment. Also review the section

on Presentation of Statistical Results and Explaining Quantitative

Findings in a Narrative Report in the NCU School of Business

Best Practice Guide for Quantitative Research Design and

Methods in Dissertations.

A manager is interested in better understanding job satisfaction

by studying the associations between a number of variables.

These variables are age, years of experience, level of education,

employee engagement, job satisfaction, and job performance

levels.

Part 1

She thinks there is a relationship between job satisfaction and

years of experience

educational level

employee engagement

job performance

State the null and alternative hypotheses.

1. Identify critical values for the test statistics and state the

decision rule concerning when to reject or fail to reject the null

hypothesis of no relationship.

2. Run the Pearson correlation analysis and include the correlation

matrix in your assignment response.

3. Report and interpret the correlation coefficient and p-value for

each variable paired with job satisfaction.

4. Explain what decisions the manager might make using these

findings.

Part 2

She thinks that younger employees will perform at a higher

level, on average.

1. State the null and alternative hypotheses sets.

2. Select the significance level.

3. Select the test statistics and calculate its value.

4. Identify critical values for the test statistics and state the

decision rule concerning when to reject or fail to reject the null

hypothesis.

5. Compare the calculated and critical values to reach a conclusion

for the null hypothesis.

6. Explain what decisions the manager might make using these

findings.

Length: 4 pages not including title and reference page

References: Include a minimum of 3 scholarly resources.

Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the

ideas and concepts presented in the course and provide new

thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your

response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA

standards.

……………………………………………………………………………….

Week 7 – Assignment: Conduct a Comparative Analysis of

Non-Parametric Statistics in Extant Literature

Instructions

For this assignment, you first will identify a topic of interest that

you might want to pursue research. You are not tied to this topic

when you reach the dissertation sequence, but it should be a

topic that you find interesting now and also relates to your

program and specialization.

Next, conduct a literature search using the NCU library to locate

two studies examining your selected topic and in which the

researchers used non-parametric statistics. In your search for

articles, you should use any combination of the term “nonparametric” as well as the different tools discussed in this

week’s lesson (e.g., Wilcoxon, Kruskal-Wallis, Spearman,

Friedman, etc.).

Once you have located your articles, you will prepare a short

paper using the following format:

Introduction to the selected topic of interest

Brief summary of first article

o

Include research question, statistical test(s), and general

findings.

Brief summary of second article

o

Include research question, statistical test(s) and general

findings.

Synthesis

o

Specifically, compare and contrast the two articles, assessing the

types of statistical methods and analysis used.

Conclusion

o

Assess what approach you might take if you were to conduct a

study in this topic area.

Length: 4 pages not including title page and reference page.

References: Include a minimum of 3 scholarly resources.

Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the

ideas and concepts presented in the course and provide new

thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your

response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA

standards.

…………………………………………………………………………..

Week 8 – Assignment: Signature Assignment: Create a

Presentation for Statistical Analysis in Research

Instructions

In this Signature Assignment, you will use what you have learned

in this course to conduct three statistical tests: a Pearson

correlation, an independent t-test, and an ANOVA.

You will use SPSS to conduct the statistical tests.

You will then prepare a PowerPoint presentation in which you

share the results of each statistical test. Each slide should

contain notes (at least 100 words) describing the analysis in

narrative form.

Prepare the PowerPoint presentation and include a voiceover. For instructions on how to include a narration to a

PowerPoint presentation, search for “how to create voice-over

narration in MSWord PowerPoint.”

Use the attached SPSS file to complete the following:

Select variables appropriate to conduct each of the statistical

tests below:

Pearson Correlation for three variables

Independent Samples t-test

o

Recall from week 5 that the t-test compares means for two

groups.

ANOVA

o

Recall from week 5 that the ANOVA test compares means for

three or more groups.

PowerPoint

Introduction

Introduce the assignment by stating the importance of

hypothesis testing in research and how statistics are used to

accomplish this.

Present the statistical tests one at a time. For each statistical

test:

1. Identify the null and alternative hypothesis for the statistical

test.

2. Identify the Independent and Dependent variables, as

appropriate. (Note: not applicable for the Pearson Correlation

statistical test)

3. Display appropriate graphics, and descriptive statistics for each

of the variables in the statistical test. Describe the central

tendency and dispersion of each variable in the slide notes using

formal writing.

4. Display the statistical output for the test.

a. Describe the statistical output in the slide notes using

formal writing.

b. Reflect on the use and value of the statistical test.

Summary

Close the assignment with a formally written reflection on

building a statistical mindset and developing statistical

confidence.

Resources:

BUS-7105 Signature Assignment SPSS Data Set

Length: 12 slides not including title page and reference page

References: Include a minimum of 5 scholarly resources.

Your presentation should demonstrate thoughtful consideration

of the ideas and concepts presented in the course and provide

new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your

response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA

standards.

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