Learning Objectives

  1. Give an example of a nomothetic causal explanation and an idiographic causal explanation.
  2. Discuss the role of the counterfactual in nomothetic causal explanation.
  3. List the three criteria for establishing a nomothetic causal relationship and the two cautions that can improve understanding of a causal connection.
  4. Contrast the strengths and weaknesses of dealing with nonspuriousness through statistical control and through randomization.
  5. Explain the meaning of the expression correlation does not prove causation.
  6. Name two challenges to using experimental designs and two difficulties with identifying idiographic causal explanations.
  7. Name and illustrate the three different longitudinal designs.
  8. Define the individual and group units of analysis and explain the role they play in the ecological and reductionist fallacies.