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Unobtrusive Measurement

Many research studies, including those in communication studies, consist of participant interviews or survey questionnaires. Both types of data collection involve the researcher being physically present during the collection of data, which can physically alter the respondents’ responses and behavior, providing the researcher with altered or biased results. During a questionnaire, respondents may get tired of filling out the survey or they could answer the questions with the response that they believe the researcher wants rather than being truthful, all because they want to look better in the eyes of the researcher. In an interview, respondents could also embellish the responses of their questions in order to not come off as one who does not enact the positive behavior being analyzed (e.g., communicating effectively ...

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