Triangulation is the combination of methodologies (research methods) in the study of the same phenomenon or event. It is a method of establishing the accuracy of information by using and comparing three or more types of independent points of view on data sources (for example: experimental method, surveys and documentation) bearing on the same findings. Experiment Proposal: One example of a good and appropriate triangulation experiment is the effect of writing biology notes in pencil or in pen on the performance of grade 10 students in their biology examination. Performance in this experiment is measurable. It can be measured using a likert scale rated from 1 – 5. This means that the students can rate their biology results according to the likert scale provided.
The experimenter has to make sure that the experiment is free from all biases. He/she should try controlling almost all the various variables encountered while structuring this experiment. The investigator should ensure that the sample for (group of students he/she wishes to use) this experiment: belong to the same grade i.e. grade 10, are of the same age group i.e. 13 – 15 years, attend the same number of biology lessons of the same teacher and study the same topic and there are a balanced number of boys and girls i.e. equal number of boys and girls. Although the experimenter will try to control all the variables mentioned above in this paragraph, there might be some parameters present which could interfere with the results of this experiment, and these parameters are called the confounding variables. An example of a confounding variable encountered in this experiment could be: presence of noise by other students leading to low concentration of the participants.
To conduct this particular experiment, the experimenter can combine three different methodologies as a process of triangulation and can carry out the experiment using these three research methods. The three methodologies the experiment could use are: 1. Experimental Method (Carry out an experiment) Conducting experiments is one of the most important tools in developing and testing theories. An experimental method is a process in which the experimenter investigates the effect of modifying certain factors on the behavior of the participants/subject.
Before conducting the experiment of the effect of writing biology notes in pencil or in pen on the performance of grade 10 students in their biology examination, the experimenter should first carry out a simpler experiment on his participants (group of students). In this simpler experiment, the experimenter will give a small paragraph of around 3 – 4 lines to his/her participants. Half of the participants will be given the paragraph written in pencil and the other half will be given the paragraph written in pen.
Then they will be given 10 minutes to memorize the paragraph and then present (say it aloud) in front of the whole class without reading or looking at the paragraph. By doing so, the experimenter will be able to observe and measure the performance of both the groups of the students i.e. those who got the paragraph written in pen as well as those who got the paragraph written in pencil. Through this simple experiment the investigator can realize the visual impact articles written in pen and pencil have on these children. The simple experiment outlined above is a laboratory experiment. Laboratory experiments have numerous advantages and disadvantages linked to them.
These are: Advantages: As the experiment will be carried out under fixed/contrived conditions no external factors from the natural environment will interfere with the memorizing process of the students, thus, the experimenter will be able to measure the visual and memorization impacts with more precision. The experimenter can easily replicate the research if carried out in closed conditions rather than the natural environment. This means that, in this experiment the investigator can vary some variables easily, for example: he/she can give his participants two new paragraphs but this time the group who got the paragraph in pencil earlier will now be given the one in pen and vice versa with the other half.
This will help the experimenter to know if it’s the children who have good memorization skills or is it the visual impacts that help the students memorize well. As the experimenter will try controlling almost all the variables regarding the type of his/her sample, he/she will be better able to draw conclusions about the effect of notes written in pen and pencil on the memorizing of his/her participants.