Hypothesis and rationale Essay

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The research proposal is based on the hypothesis that the current Tactical Personnel System training needs to be more effective and hence a departure from passive slide show system to more interactive system is a necessity. The main aim is that the personnel who have to undergo interactive training will learn and absorb more information than those with comparable amounts of passive TPS training experience. The modification in the system is now being developed with the introduction of hyperstudio. This will be analyzed through a set of tests organized by the researcher with scope of applicable to both control and experimental groups.

A new set of TPS training sequences with the hyperstudio will be organized with the fact that practical experience with project based approach with the use of hyperstudio as its rational being the more valuable knowledge again rather than passively acquired knowledge. The memory retention based theme of current learning mediums of slideshow presentations and other media with possible utilization in the training fields has not been good enough to provide any real benefits if performance on the real world makes way.

A more intensive, interactive and practical approach based training method has to be adopted so as to promote full use of the TPS system. An instructional system in an improvised format will result in an increase level of proficiency and full utilization of the TPS capabilities. Methodology Participants The population of the study will consist of uniformed soldiers, senior officials and the training staff. The sample population will perform manifesting operations in Fort Hood, Texas, which is the largest military installation in the world, and currently home of two divisions of approximately 16,000 soldiers each.

One support command of 12,000 soldiers, and numerous reserves with joint argumentation that makes it one of the most deployable military assets in the United States inventory. Setting The research will take place in the participants current work location. No artificial environment or classroom setup will be provided due to the widely dispersed locations and issues of logistical support. Procedure The goal of this research is to determine the effectiveness of the new set of training exercises compared to the current TPS training program.

Initially, a simple random sample of 100 uniformed soldiers who have all had full TPS field experience will be given a baseline test organized by the researcher. The results will be compiled for later comparison with the research results, and those initially tested will no longer take part in the study. Then, two groups of 100 uniformed soldiers each (obtained through simple random sampling), all with previous TPS training, will be selected.

A copy of the TPS users manual, test sheets, questionnaire, and the new set of additional TPS interactive training exercises will be emailed to the individual accounts of the experimental group, and a copy of the standard set of TPS training exercises, users manual, test sheets, and questionnaire will be emailed to the individual accounts of the experimental group. They will undergo a preliminary test to determine their current knowledge, and then they will be instructed to go through the exercises and then answer the test that immediately follows.

Participants will be asked to volunteer for a one-on-one interview that will identify their concerns with the training, and also recommendations on how to improve the training. Finally, they will all be directed to complete a questionnaire that will address their overall impression of the material. Research Design The sample for this study will be selected from military personnel through simple random sampling. The variables that might affect the research are training intensity, computer literacy, personal military background, and age.

Since all members of the sample groups have individual access to computers and email, the material and instructions for the study will be sent by e-mail. They will be required to complete a preliminary test and then independently go through the new exercises (if in the experimental group) or through the TPS user refresher slideshow presentation (if in the control group), and then complete the second test. A viable mode of administering the interactive training and tests may be through the use of a Macromedia® Flash interactive presentation in a web browser.

The second test and the questionnaire can be included and come right after the training, thus minimizing the possibility of cheating. Questionnaires are one of the most popular ways in which data may be collected. These are used for a range of purposes and will often be the tool used to collect quantitative data. But it is worth mentioning that although this may be classified as mostly a quantitative process of collecting data it may also be a qualitative method, depending on the number, depth and style of the questions.

Data will also be collected using questionnaires, surveys, and interviews given to participants that agree in advance. Prior coordination with the individuals supervisor will be arranged, as they will be able to promote timely collection and also minimize non-responses. To protect the identity of the individual and foster sincere responses, all questionnaires will be marked with a Letter P and a number to identify the passively-trained sample and a letter A with a number to identify the field-trained sample.

A predetermined set of questions will be answered using the Likert Scale and measured using t-test for independent sample. All completed surveys and questionnaires will be collected from location on a pre-determined date. Quantitative research over here has relied more on the large amount of results, with the recorded data being mainly numerical in type and has been suitably used as a method of determining cause and effect relationships (Curwin and Slater, 2001).

But this qualitative research is narrower and more concentrated by looking to information to be gained in-depth from a smaller quantity of subjects (Curwin and Slater, 2001). Since the data over here require phenomenal research of Grounded theory as well as historical research hence this Qualitative research is best suited for getting applied (Curwin and Slater, 2001). Since the research undertaken over here has been basically done on analysing how the use of Hyperstudio can effect change in the pattern of TPS training, the study of the same is going add something to the existing knowledge.

Therefore, we must consider the different aspects of research that will characterise a research project as valid; these may include issues such as reliability, validity, objectivity, causality and bias. These may be seen in the questions that are asked, the way they are asked through phrasing and order, and in questions that are not asked. Therefore the questionnaire has been designed while considering the full possibility of getting certain answers, but in what type of answers are attained and to be seen as impartial.

There are different aspects that need to be considered so that it will be accepted and good solid research. The formulation of a questionnaire may be inherently biased and reflect the desired out come rather than an objective research method. Reliability may be perceived as one of the easier objectives. This is often seen as the ability of the same study to be conducted and the results to prove the same, however repeatability does it mean that a research project is valid and can be relied upon (Denzin, 1978). We have considered other aspects of the research rather that just reliability in order to make the project valid.

Reliability must also come from the level of confidence that may be seen in a study from the objectivity or recognised subjectivity which may be seen to arise. The project have been undertaken from a subjective perspective and those asking the questions if a face to face method is used, do not known the study purpose. The first stage to recognise that subjectivity is present and then recognised in order to overcome. If we set out to prove a model is true it is easy for the research to be biased, just as if we are looking for specific information other aspects may be ignored or forgotten.

As such although the researcher may be biased there are certain measures that can be taken to ensure the research model used can be seen to have been implemented objectively. In designing the questionnaire it is likely that there will be others involved either by way of observation or the correlation of the data. When designing the research questions, there should be no indication of the final purpose of the study, in this way we might limit the bias of the respondents and ensure there is a lower risk of the cross contamination of bias (Denzin, 1978).

However, it must also be recognised that we can never completely extinguish research bias. Data Analysis When looking at the way a sample should be chosen there will be the desire to choose a sample that is representative of the personnels that is going to be targeted. If the population is not representative then the results will not be representative. The way in which we need to consider the target is to look at the way sampling will be used. In this scale we need to talk to people who are either getting training or have been trained or are providing instructions while training.

The first aspect is whether probability or non-probability sampling should be used. Probability sampling is a more random sampling style, the basis of this is that the selection of each respondent is a matter of chance and that all respondents will have an equal chance of being chosen, in many cases this can be a known probably of the respondent being selected. There are a number of sampling techniques that fall into this category. These include simple random sampling, systematic sampling, stratified and cluster sampling.

In total there are more than 30 probability sampling techniques (Malhotra, 1999). Random sampling is best defined as a sampling method was any member of the population will not have a zero chance of selection where the chances can be calculated. Looking at these different methods, simple random sampling is the most basic. This is where all members shave the same chance of being chosen and where the knowledge of another population member being chosen for sampling will not alter the odds. A method of undertaking this is choosing names out of a hat or any other random method.

Stratified sampling is where the population of the sample is separated into distinct groups which do not overlap; this is where stratification is seen. There will then be samples taken from each of these groups. For example, this may be a sample that is divided into male and females, likewise we may look at those who can and do use the internet and those who do not. There may also be the use of age groups, they key is no overlaps between the groups. The next potential method may be multistage sampling. This may consist of two, three or more stages in the sampling.

The process will start with the division of the population into non-overlapping groups as seen with the stratified sampling. However this is only the first stage, following this a sample of the first stage units will be chosen according to different criteria. We can also look at non probability sampling techniques as these will have a level of intervention to ensure the sample is representative. The most common is quota sampling, but this will also include judgement sampling, convenience sampling, random route sampling and snowball sampling (Talmage 1988).

Quota sampling is exactly as it appears to sound, there are the definition of quotas to be used. In many cases these will consist of gender, age groups and social class quotas, which may or may not have crossovers. This is used widely in commercial settings but this is also a method that is not supported as widely in academic circles (Ojeda and Sahai, 2002). Opportunity sampling is where an opportunity is sought to interview or gain the opinions of a particular group and will then place themselves or the survey in the position of those who may be most appropriate for that study (Talmage 1988).

Random route sampling where is there is a route planned and the interviewer may travel that route to gather data and hopefully meet potential subjects. This is a very random method of sampling and is also difficult to gain the correct numbers where there is quantitative data required. Snowball sampling is a method that can be used when there is a scenario of a large level of data being required in a short period of time (Talmage 1988). This may be used with a few key people being approached and interviewed which will then lead to more potential candidates being identified (Talmage 1988).

Self section is also a non random type of sampling as the respondents will volunteer themselves and a last type we may consider is that of plausibility sampling which is defined by Talmage (1988) as a sample selected because it appears plausible that the members are representative of a wider population, without any real evidence (page 82). With each of these methods there are advantages and disadvantages, we need to consider which is going to be most appropriate considering the population required and the sample and the sampling method.

Looking at all of these it appears that the most appropriate method will be that snowballing, it is not the fastest but it is likely to provide the best results in identifying potential respondents for the research. The mean is the measure of average performance of a group on a measure of some variable (Gay & Airasian, 2003). Data analysis is meant to calculate the mean between variables by finding relations among the variables. Initial data analysis will begin with the comparison of the test results from the control and experimental groups.

All survey, questionnaire, and interview data will be collected, converted to values and processed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS). The results of the control and experimental groups will then also be compared with the results from the baseline test. After this, the results will be analyzed to test the hypothesis through a classification system for each value. The demographic variables such as gender, age, and education will be grouped under one category, while questions related to the hypothesis will be grouped in another useful category.

The numeric values will be evaluated using the t-test, which assesses whether the means of two groups are statistically different from each other. Results from participants will be analyzed by thorough examination of the survey, questionnaires, and interviews. The mean analysis comparison will determine changes on the responses from the initial baseline survey to the second and final survey. The questionnaire data will be used to analyze the effectiveness of the current mediums of the TPS. Results from the statistical data will indicate the consistency of the training effectiveness for participants overall.

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