Negative correlation.

Essay by LewMoneyCollege, UndergraduateA+, April 2003

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The relationship between television viewing and attention span has been described as a negative correlation. Negative correlation is defined as "An association between increases in one variable and decreases in another. " (Psychology 7th Edition, Carol Trans and Carole Wade, pg. 676.) My hypothesis is that the more television an individual watches the less attention span that individual will exhibit. This is because, watching television takes no attention span, if you get bored you change the channel, as such people who watch an excessive amount of television "train" themselves to become attention deficient.

To test my hypothesis I will gather thirty high school sophomores from a random sampling of the Syracuse and surrounding suburb's school district. I choose this group because I feel they are effected most by television watching. After choosing the thirty students, they will be randomly split into three groups of ten. Each group will be told they will be involved in a study of violence in the media to eliminate any bias.

Group one will be instructed to watch one hour of television a night for a period of three weeks. Group two, three hours for three weeks, and group three, six hours a night for three weeks. This would be considered my control.

My dependent variable, or measurement of their attention span would be after the three week period was over. I would take each individual from each group and tell them I have to retrieve something from my home office. Then I would give them the same two-hundred and fifty piece puzzle and tell them to try to complete it while I was away. Then a independent set a observers who knew nothing about what was happening would time exactly one hour per each individual, tell them to stop doing the puzzle, and record...