Most studies involving participants require the collection of data at two different points in time since participants receive some kind of training or intervention.

Generally, this takes a while. For instance, training a group of participants can take four weeks, six weeks, eight weeks, or even longer. That time in training or intervention is lost time, in terms of completing the dissertation.

Another problem is attrition or fall-out; you almost always lose participants on the post-test, which negatively affects your data.

Obviously, the more subjects you have, the less significant the effect of attrition. For most dissertation students, however, it’s hard to get enough participants to begin with, so losing even a few could have a negative effect on outcomes.

What can you do about that? Make the training or intervention as short as possible and take the probably attrition into account when you’re recruiting your study participants.

 

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