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Introduction to Correlation Research

Calculating the Correlation

❶Correlation allows the researcher to investigate naturally occurring variables that maybe unethical or impractical to test experimentally. If we are studying anorexic women and their dating habits we would choose a sample from a population of anorexic women asking a chubby dude like me would not make sense for an anorexic study so I would NOT be a part of the population.

This article is a part of the guide:

cor·re·la·tion·al meth·od
Correlational Study Example
Correlation Coefficients

Archival Research involves analyzing data that has previously been collected by others and looking for correlations. The researcher does not have control over the data or how it was gathered, however, the researcher may have access to large amounts of data with relatively little effort and often the data is free.

For example, a researcher may examine the crime statistics of several neighborhoods to see if there is any correlation with crime and a sluggish housing market in particular areas. Statistical Techniques Researchers use several statistical techniques to look for correlations in the data collected through these types of studies.

While this module does not allow for an in-depth discussion of all of the various statistical techniques used in correlational studies, following is a list of the commonly used analyses: The most common statistical test is the calculation of the correlation coefficient r , as discussed in the previous module in this series.

This is a bivariate correlation analysis that is a measure of the strength of the relationship between two variables. There are several different correlation coefficient calculations and the types of calculation used depends on the data type. The Pearson Correlation Coefficient is the most common, but the following link offers a key that helps determine which calculation is appropriate: Choosing a Correlation Test. Refer to the previous module and the Resource Links on this page for more information about the correlation coefficient.

Regression analysis allows for the analysis of more than just two variables. It used to examine one or more independent variables multiple variables to predict a single dependent variable or outcome.

For example, a researcher may be looking at a the monthly discretionary spending of families dependent variable and looking for correlations with other variables such as the number of children, income, college education, and size of home the independent variables. The regression analysis is commonly used to look for linear relationships linear regression analysis , but there are other forms as well.

The regression analysis is used to develop predictions. Path Analysis is an extension of regression analysis for more than a single dependent variable or outcome. This allows for testing of more complex theoretical models Canonical correlation analysis is used to examine the possible correlation between two different linear sets of variables.

For example, the researcher may examine the presence of two variables — diagnosis of clinical depression and recent traumatic life events — on those that attempted suicide. Research design and methods: Controls, conceptualization, and the interrelation between experimental and correlational research.

American Psychologist , 25 7 , How to design and evaluate research in education Vol. Data analysis for research designs. Thirteen ways to look at the correlation coefficient. The American Statistician , 42 1 , Research methods in education.

Statistical methods in psychology journals: American psychologist , 54 8 , Research Ready Home Teach Research.

Resource Links Statistical Solutions: Page Options Share Email Link. If an increase in one variable tends to be associated with an increase in the other then this is known as a positive correlation. An example would be height and weight. Taller people tend to be heavier. If an increase in one variable tends to be associated with a decrease in the other then this is known as a negative correlation. An example would be height above sea level and temperature. As you climb the mountain increase in height it gets colder decrease in temperature.

When there is no relationship between two variables this is known as a zero correlation. For example their is no relationship between the amount of tea drunk and level of intelligence. A correlation can be expressed visually. This is done by drawing a scattergram - that is one can plot the figures for one variable against the figures for the other on a graph.

When you draw a scattergram it doesn't matter which variable goes on the x-axis and which goes on the y-axis. Remember, in correlations we are always dealing with paired scores, so the values of the 2 variables taken together will be used to make the diagram. Decide which variable goes on each axis and then simply put a cross at the point where the 2 values coincide.

Strictly speaking correlation is not a research method but a way of analysing data gathered by other means. This might be useful, for example, if we wanted to know if there were an association between watching violence on T. Another area where correlation is widely used is in the study of intelligence where research has been carried out to test the strength of the association between the I.

The correlation coefficient r indicates the extent to which the pairs of numbers for these two variables lie on a straight line. Values over zero indicate a positive correlation, while values under zero indicate a negative correlation. An experiment isolates and manipulates the independent variable to observe its effect on the dependent variable, and controls the environment in order that extraneous variables may be eliminated.

Experiments establish cause and effect.

Differences between Experiments and Correlations

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Correlational research is a type of nonexperimental research in which the researcher measures two variables and assesses the statistical relationship (i.e., the correlation) between them with little or no effort to control extraneous variables.

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Correlation means association - more precisely it is a measure of the extent to which two variables are related. If an increase in one variable tends to be associated with an increase in the other then this is known as a positive Saul Mcleod.

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Video: Correlational Research: Definition, Purpose & Examples This lesson explores, with the help of two examples, the basic idea of what a correlation is, the general purpose of using correlational research, and how a researcher might use it in a study. The correlation is one of the most common and most useful statistics. A correlation is a single number that describes the degree of relationship between two variables. Let's work through an example to show you how this statistic is computed.

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Correlation Research Method, a statistical measure of a relationship between two or more variables, gives an indication of how one variable may predict another. Types of Correlational Studies. There are many different ways to show a correlation between two variables. Let’s discuss some of the more popular ways; the survey method and naturalistic observation. The Survey Method. Perhaps the most common type of research around is survey research.