Seminar 10: Lab Report 1 – Data Analysis A

Theoretical background: A meta-analysis conducted by Song et al. (2014) tested two models of the relationship between perceived social support and Facebook use Based on their findings, the model postulating that a perceived lack of social support leads to more intense Facebook use seems more likely. However, not all studies have come to the same conclusion. For example, Lönnqvuist et al. (2016) tested this relationship using a diverse set of social well-being questionnaires and found no relationship between perceived social support and the size of the Facebook network (quantified as the number of Facebook friends). They did not test other aspects of Facebook use. More recently, Brailovskaia et al. (2019) highlighted that when people perceive a lack support from their ‘offline’ social network, they tend to increase their Facebook use in order to compensate for this lack of support by receiving social support from their ‘online’ social network.

Brief description of the current study: You conducted a study to test this relationship using the following questionnaires (specific items can be found in the SPSS dataset and in LabReport1_Questionnaires_2019.docx uploaded to the Moodle folder):

1) Facebook Intensity Scale (FIS): to assess the intensity of Facebook use

2) Interpersonal Support Evaluation Scale (ISEL): to assess the perceived offline social support

3) Online Social Support (OSS) Scale: to assess the perceived online social support

STEP 1: Hypotheses

  1. A) Based on the studies outlined above, what is your research hypothesis for the relationship between perceived social support and Facebook use?

You will need to include this hypothesis in the Lab report.

  1. B) What are the statistical hypotheses to test the relationship?

No need to include these in the Lab report.

STEP 2: Descriptive statistics

You will need to describe your sample.

  1. A) First, explore whether all participants use Facebook. This is important because the questionnaires focus on Facebook use and online social support, and you want to test this relationship in a sample that uses Facebook. To do this, use the ‘FIS_7’ variable in SPSS. This variable shows how many Facebook friends they have (‘zero’ here means they do not use Facebook at all).

Click Analyze à Descriptive à Frequencies. Add variable ‘FIS_7’ to the Variable(s). Make sure that the ‘Display frequency tables’ is ticked. Click OK.

Are there participants in the sample who do not use Facebook? __________

If yes, how many? _______

Are there missing values? (Participants who did not answer this question?)  _________

If yes, how many? _______

If you answered ‘yes’ to any of these questions, you will need to include these numbers in the Lab report (‘Participants’ section).

  1. B) You will want to focus your analyses on those participants who use Facebook. To do this, you can select this sub sample by using Data à Select cases… In the dialogue box select ‘If condition in satisfied’.

Click on ‘If…’ and in the next box, type: FIS_7 > 0

Click ‘Continue’ and ‘OK’. Now go back to the SPSS data file ‘Data view’. In the first column you will notice that a diagonal line appeared for some rows. Data from these rows will be excluded from all further analyses as these are the participants who do not use Facebook.

Remember: If you close your SPSS data file and then open it again later, you will need to do these steps again starting with ‘Data > Select cases…’. This is important because otherwise you may unintentionally run your analyses on the whole sample instead of on this selected sample.

  1. C) Now it’s time to describe your sample. Using the Analyse à Descriptive Statistics à Descriptives tool, you can calculate the mean age and standard deviation of age for the current sample.

Number of participants in the current sample__________

Mean age of participants __________

Standard deviation of age ___________

You also need to report how many of your participants were male/female/other. To do this, select Analyse à Descriptive Statistics à Frequencies, and move Gender into the variables box.

Number of males ______            Number of females ______

Number of other/prefer not to say: ______

You will need to include these details in the Lab report’s ‘Participants’ section.

Step 3: Check normality

To check the normality of your key variables, the total scores on the Facebook and online and offline social support questionnaires, go to Analyze à Descriptive Statistics à Explore.

Add the three composite scores (FIS_score, ISEL_score, OSS_score) to the ‘Dependent list’.

Click ‘Plots’, select the ‘Histogram’ option and the ‘Normality plots with tests’ option.

Check the ‘Tests of Normality’ table in the SPSS output. This table include both the Kolmogorov-Smirnov and the Shapiro-Wilk tests of normality. Since the Shapiro-Wilk test is recommended for smaller samples, we will use this one in the Lab report. However, you can compare the results of the two normality tests to see whether they show similar results.

Null hypothesis of the normality tests: There is no deviation from normal distribution (i.e., the data are normally distributed).

Alternative hypothesis of the normality tests: There is deviation from normal distribution (i.e., the data are not normally distributed).

What are the p-values of the Shapiro-Wilk normality tests?

Facebook use (FIS): _____    Offline social support (ISEL): _____     Online social support (OSS): _____

Are these results significant?

Facebook use (FIS): _____    Offline social support (ISEL): _____     Online social support (OSS): _____

How would you report these results? (it is enough to use p-values here to support your claims)

Include these results in the ‘Results’ section of your Lab report.

Data analysis will continue in Seminar 11.

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