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Fig. 3.6 Example of a Rating Scale Item for Parents of 8 th Graders (Practical Example)
hypothesis is that this defendant is innocent, while the research hypothesis is that he
or she is guilty.
In the great state of Missouri, every license plate has the state slogan: “Show
me.” This means that people in Missouri think of themselves as not gullible enough
to accept everything that someone says as true unless that person’s actions indicate
the truth of his or her claim. In other words, people in Missouri believe strongly that
a person’s actions speak much louder than that person’s words.
Since both the null hypothesis and the research hypothesis cannot both be true ,
the task of hypothesis testing using statistical formulas is to decide which one you
will accept as true, and which one you will reject as true.
Sometimes in science research a series of rating scales is used to measure
people’s attitudes toward a company, toward one of its products, or toward their
intention-to-buy that company’s products. These rating scales are typically 5-point,
7-point, or 10-point scales, although other scale values are often used as well. Determining the Null Hypothesis and the Research
Hypothesis When Rating Scales are Used
Here is a typical example of a 7-point scale in science education for parents of 8 th
grade pupils at the end of a school year (see Fig. 3.6 ):
So, how do we decide what to use as the null hypothesis and the research
hypothesis whenever rating scales are used?
Objective : To decide on the null hypothesis and the research
hypothesis whenever rating scales are used.
In order to make this determination, we will use a simple rule:
Rule: Whenever rating scales are used, we will use the “middle” of the scale as
the null hypothesis and the research hypothesis.
In the above example, since 4 is the number in the middle of the scale (i.e., three
numbers are below it, and three numbers are above it), our hypotheses become:
Null hypothesis:
m ¼
Research hypothesis:
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