Instructor: Clement A. Stone

Instructor: Clement A. Stone


PIE 2030 – Experimental Design

Instructor: Clement A. Stone

Office: 5920Posvar Hall; 624-9359; email:


The course is designed to introduce students to different methods in experimental design. Topics include characteristics of experimental research, steps for implementing an experiment, design issues as they related to internal and external validity, classification of experimental designs, sampling, and design techniques such as blocking, analysis of covariance, and assessment of change. Other research methods will be discussed including survey research, meta-analysis, and quasi-experimental designs.

General course objectives include:

1)Understand the goals of experimental design and causal inference

2)Understand how experimental designs differ from other research

3)Understand what specific experimental design techniques are intended to accomplish

4)Understand connections between specific experimental design techniques and statistical analyses

5)Understand different quasi-experimental designs, what the designs are intended to accomplish

6)Be able to recognize strengths and weaknesses of various research design practices including experimental research, survey research, meta-analysis, and quasi-experimental research

Course Prerequisites

Introduction to Research Methodology (PIE2001 or equivalent)

Introductory Statistics course (PIE2018 or equivalent)

Students should have an understanding of simple statistical concepts (mean, variance, normal distribution, correlation) as well as an understanding of basic methods such as linear regression, t-test, and hypothesis testing.

Course Readings


Shadish, Cook, & Campbell. Experimental and Quasi-experimental Designs for Generalized Causal Inference. Publisher: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning (2002).


Christensen, Burke, & Turner. Research Methods, Design, and Analysis, 11th Edition Publisher: Pearson (2010).

Course Evaluation

Homework (contributing 20% to the final grade) will be assigned for each topic area. For each day that answers to an exercise are submitted late, 20% of points possible will be deducted.

There will be two examinations (midterm, final each contributing 40% to the final grade). Each exam will consist of short answer and multiple-choice type questions. Exams are closed book.

Class participation in discussions is expected.

Schedule (tentative)Readings in Readings in

Shadishet. al.Christenson et. al.


1 - Introduction to course Ch. 1-3Ch. 1, 2, 6, Reading

– review of concepts

Review of Statistical

Concepts (Ch. 14-15)

2 - Experimental designCh. 8Ch. 7,8

3 -Experimental design (cont.)Reading

4 - Issues in analyzing data from Ch.15

experimental designs

5 -Issues in analyzing data from

experimental designs (cont.)

6 -Issues in analyzing data from

experimental designs (cont.)

7 - Midterm

8 - Meta-analysisCh. 13, Readingspg. 17

9 - Introduction to samplingCh. 9Ch. 5

10 - Determining sample sizeReadingPart of Ch. 9

11 -Quasi-experimental researchpgs. 13-17, Ch. 4-7Ch. 10

Ch 11

12 - Quasi-experimental research (cont.)

13 - Survey researchReadingCh. 12

14 - Thanksgiving

15 - Catch-up

16 -Final Exam

Other Useful Readings

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Briggs, D. C., Ruiz-Primo, M. A., Furtak, E., & Shepard, L. (2012). Meta-analytic methodology and inferences about the efficacy of formative assessment.Educational Measurement: Issues and Practice, 31(4), 13 – 17.

deAnda, D. (2006). Baby think it over: Evaluation of an infant simulation intervention for adolescent pregnancy prevention. Health & Social Work, 31(1), 26 – 35.

Feinman, R. D. (2009). Intention-to-treat: What is the question? Nutrition & Metabolism, 6(1).

Han, H., Lee, J., Kim, J., Hedlin, H. K., Song, H., & Kim, M. T. (2009).A meta-analysis of interventions to promote mammography among ethnic minority women.Nursing Research, 58(4), 246 – 254.

Harwell, M., & LeBeau, B. (2010).Student eligibility for a free lunch as an SES measure in education research.Educational Researcher, 39(2), 120-131.

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Kingston, N., & Nash, B. (2011). Formative assessment: A meta-analysis and a call for research. Educational Measurement: Issues and Practice, 30(4), 28 – 37.

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Leake, M., & Lesik, S. A. (2007). Do remedial English programs impact first-year success in college? An illustration of the regression-discontinuity design.International Journal of Research & Method in Education, 30(1), 89 – 99.

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Steiner, P. M., Wrolewski, A., & Cook, T. D. (2009).Randomized experiments and quasi-experimental research designs in educational research. In K. E. Ryan, & J. B. Cousins (Eds.), The Sage International Handbook on Educational Evaluation. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

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West, S. G., & Thoemmes, F. (2010). Campbell’s and Rubin’s perspectives on causal inference.Psychological Methods, 15(1), 18 – 37.

Other Sources

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Shadish, W. R., & Cook, T. D. (2009).The renaissance of field experimentation in evaluating interventions.Annual Review of Psychology, 60, 607 – 629.

Shadish, W. R., Galindo, R., Wong, V. C., Steiner, P. M., & Cook, T. D. (2011).A randomized experiment comparing random and cutoff-based assignment.Psychological Methods, 16(2), 179 – 191.

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Other Useful Books

Campbell, D. T., & Stanley, J. C. (1963).Experimental and quasi-experimental designs for research. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin.

Booth, W. C., Colomb, G. G., & Williams, J. M. (2003).The craft of research (2nd ed.). Chicago, IL: The University of Chicago Press. 7P:220.

Cook, T. D, & Campbell, D. T. (1979). Quasi-experimentation: Design and analysis for field settings. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin.

Freedman, D. (2010).Statistical models and causal inference: A dialogue with the social sciences (D. Collier, J. S. Sekhin, & P. B. Stark; Eds.). New York, NY: Cambridge.

Murnane, J. R., & Willett, J. B. (2011).Methods Matter: Improving Causal Inference in Educational and Social Science Research. New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Strunk, W., & White. (2000). The elements of style (4th ed.). Needham Heights, MA: Allyn & Bacon.

Tufte, E. R. (2001). The visual display of quantitative information (2nd ed.). Cheshire, MA: Graphics Press.