Acknowledgments


These simulation exercises have evolved from an earlier set of dice rolling exercises that Donald T. Campbell used (and still uses, we hear) in the 1970s in teaching research methodology to undergraduate and graduate students. Over the years, those exercises helped introduce many a struggling graduate student to the joys both of simulation and methodology. We hope that much of the spirit of those earlier simulations is retained here. Certainly, none of the problems in our simulations can be attributed to Campbell's efforts. He was able to achieve a blend of congeniality and rigor that we have tried to emulate.

The computer versions of these simulations came out of Bill Trochim's efforts in the early 1980s to translate some of those Campbell dice rolling exercises into increasingly available computer technologies. Previous versions were implemented in a number of the graduate and undergraduate research methods courses at Cornell over the years. We owe a great debt to the many students who struggled with earlier drafts and offered their valuable criticisms and suggestions.

During the mid-80s Trochim began working with these exercises with James Davis who, at the time, was T.A. for his graduate-level methods courses. James improved on them considerably, taking what were separate exercises and integrating them into a single computerized simulation that illustrated the three major pre/post research designs. His efforts led to two co-authored articles on simulation cited in this workbook.

This current set of exercises was resurrected in the Spring of 1993 initially to provide an interesting and challenging problem area for Sarita Tyler's Ph.D. qualifying examinations. Essentially she took a set of file folders that had some poorly xeroxed copies of the old dice rolling and computer exercises on them, and integrated these into the coherant package contained here. We had no idea when she began that this process was going to result in an integrated workbook -- all she originally intended was to learn something about simulations. Clearly the present volume would not have happened without her considerable efforts.


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Copyright 1996, William M.K. Trochim