Section 1: Understand Quantitative Research Designs: Locate a standardized measurement instrument used in your specialization or area of interest, and then complete an evaluation of the instrument as described below

Quantitative research primarily employs the use of numerical data involving basic descriptive and inferential statistical analyses to address null and alternative hypotheses. The goal is often to conclude if a significant or non-significant effect, difference, or relationship exists for generalizing conclusions from a sample to a larger related population with a minimal amount of error.

This course is designed to provide you with the knowledge needed to understand and apply different quantitative research designs to develop a framework for a rigorous and valid quantitative study. The major quantitative designs of correlational, quasi-experimental, and experimental will be addressed in this course. To promote validity within the results of the study, the quantitative design utilized should accurately address the problem that prompts the research, the purpose of the research, the research questions, and corresponding hypotheses. The parameters of the data, the availability, and feasibility of the participants and circumstances, and the capabilities of the researchers must all be considered when determining the final quantitative design to be used. The focus of Section 1 is on the basics of quantitative methodology and design.

The goal of this course is to ensure that you develop a firm understanding of the critical elements and framework supporting a quality aligned quantitative study so that you can later apply research design principles for your own research. During this course, take time to explore the quantitative approach and each corresponding design’s potential applicability to your dissertation methodology. Course assignments are not intended to result in a completed dissertation methodology; rather, this course offers you the opportunity to develop a strong foundation in quantitative design and examine possible quantitative approaches.

During this course, you will be reviewing many previously published NCU quantitative dissertations to give you the idea of where all of this is headed as you enter the dissertation phase of your journey. Take a moment to make sure you know how to locate NCU dissertations in via the NCU Library.

Critique Standardized Measurement Instruments

An instrument in research is the term for the measurement device a researcher uses (Hoy & Adams, 2016). Common measurement instruments are surveys, tests, questionnaires, and interview protocols (which means the set of interview questions the researcher plans to use).

Quantitative measurement instruments often produce numerical values from assessments, rating scales, historical data, document reviews, among others, measuring various constructs and variables. Whenever available, existing previously validated instruments should be employed to measure a construct or variable, rather than developing new instruments requiring the implementation of various strategies to determine appropriate measurement validity and reliability. Especially for new researchers including students, using a previously validated measurement instrument saves time and resources and improves the efficiency and accuracy of conducting research.

Figure 4.
 Research designs.

Be sure to review this week’s resources carefully. You are expected to apply the information from these resources when you prepare your assignments.


Hoy, W., & Adams, C. (2016). Quantitative research in education: A primer.   Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE.

Using Research Instruments : A Guide for Researchers by Peter Birmingham  and David Wilkinson of Form

Locate a standardized measurement instrument used in your specialization or area of interest, and then complete an evaluation of the instrument as described below. There are a few different ways to locate a measurement instrument with published psychometrics.

Use the information found in the LibGuide in this week’s Resources to locate a test instrument by one of these three methods:

  1. Use the Roadrunner Search to identify a measurement instrument used in a peer-reviewed study you have read, and then use the reference list to find its origin.
  2. Use one of the Library databases listed in the guide to identify a test instrument.
  3. Try searching for a commercially published test or measurement or information about them on the Internet.

The standardized measurement instrument used in the critique must be located from a scholarly source containing validity and reliability information. Use the measurement template below to create a presentation sharing your critique.

Length: 6 slides, not including title and reference slides; each slide should include 150-200 words of speaker notes

References: Include a minimum of 1 reference (cite the source where you located the measurement instrument).

Locate a measurement instrument with published psychometrics