In research we come across the idea of ‘independent’ and ‘dependent’ variables that reflects upon the tendency to think in regard to cause and effects. Here for example motivation could be described as the dependent variable to be explained and growth need strength having causal influence over motivation.
In an experimental design, what is manipulated is the independent variable. Very less ambiguity is there about the direction of causal influence. On the contrary there is no clarity with cross sectional designs, the one that is used in social survey research. Therefore, it cannot be said that independent variable precedes the dependent one.
The concern about causality is shown in the preoccupation with internal validity. There is more value given to research that shows the characteristics of an experimental design as more trust is enjoyed in the causal findings associated
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