Experimental, Quasi-Experimental, and Ex Post Facto

For this module assignment, demonstrate your understanding by creating a chart that compares and contrasts (that is, shows similarities and differences) the characteristics of the three designs: experimental, quasi-experimental, and ex post facto. The chart will be evaluated based on the thoroughness of the characteristics and the clarity in which the chart is designed. Use a 12 pt. Times New Roman

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An understanding of the following key words and concepts is important for success in understanding the content in this module. This list is not exhaustive so be sure to refer to the module content and text for further understanding.

Experimental Design

A method of identifying cause-and-effect relationships.

Dependent Variable

A variable that is potentially influenced by the independent variable.

Baseline Data

The sequence of observations made prior to treatment.

Independent Variable

A variable that the researcher studies as a possible cause of something else. In many research designs, the researcher directly manipulates the independent variable.

Internal Validity

Essential component of an experimental design. It is the extent to which the design of the study and the data it yields allow the researcher to draw legitimate conclusions about relationships.

Confounding Variable

Variables that threaten a study’s internal validity. Confounding variables are present when two or more groups might be different in ways in addition to the particular treatment or intervention studied.

Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA)

A statistical test controlling for confounding variables.

Pre-experimental Designs

These designs are helpful only for forming tentative hypotheses that should be followed up with more controlled studies.

Quasi-experimental Designs

These designs do not control for all confounding variables.

Ex Post Facto Designs

A researcher identifies events that have already occurred or conditions that are already present and then collects data to investigate a possible relationship between these characteristics.

Factorial Designs

The examination of the effects of two or more independent variables in a single study.


An analysis of the analyses – the researcher combines the results of many experimental and/or ex post facto studies to determine whether they yield consistent, predictable results.

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