Topic 1: Sampling

Suppose you were awarded a research grant to survey inmates currently incarcerated in state prison systems about their physical and mental health care needs. Given that there are more than 1.3 million people incarcerated in United States’ prisons, it would not be feasible to survey each inmate. What type of sampling would be the most effective (least selection bias) and efficient (most timely) to use for this research scenario? Explain the rationale for your response, providing examples and support from this week’s Reading and/or outside scholarly sources.

Topic 2: Research Design

This week you will have the opportunity to work with your colleagues in the course to develop a Team Assignment. You will consider some of the political, procedural, and ethical challenges that researchers must often face.

Consider the scenario where you have been asked to conduct a study on the effectiveness of a new educational program for inmates and whether it reduces re-offending after release and improves long-term educational achievement. Explain the type of research design that you feel would most effectively control for threats to internal validity, such as testing and selection bias. Provide rationale for your answer, with support from this week’s Reading and/or outside scholarly sources.