Need Question Answered

James Owens jamo at hardy.u.washington.edu
Fri May 7 12:21:54 EST 1993


ltorre at eis.calstate.edu (Lily Anne B. De La Torre) writes:

>Can someone out there help me distinguish between the scientific terms:
>          -Accuracy
>          -Reliability
>          -Validity

	In general terms, Reliability indicates the extent to which the
same results are obtained when responses are measured at different times,
Validity indicates the extent to which the dependent variable (the
variable you are measuring) reflects what you want to measure, while
Accuracy (more a popular word than a scientific term) indicates how close
experimental results come to "capital T" Truth. 
	There are several types of validity:
		construct validity: testing the validity of a given
measure against other established measures.
		face validity: the extent to which a given measure "on the
face of it" seems to measure the actual construct of interest (e.g. blood
pressure may have more face validity as a measure of stress than, say,
therapist visits in the past year...)
		internal validity: the extent to which the observed effect
is caused only by the experimental treatment condition
		external validity: the extent to which the observed effect
can be generalized or extrapolated to reality.
		I'm sure there are others but I can't remember....
	Hope this is helpful!
		Jim Owens
	University of Washington
	Physiology/Biophysics
	jamo at u.washington.edu



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