Solomon Four-Group Design

The Solomon four-group design, developed by Richard Solomon in 1949, was devised to overcome the problem of pretest sensitization. Pretest sensitization occurs when participants’ scores on a posttest are influenced as a result of a pretest being administered. The central feature of the Solomon four-group design is that participants are randomly assigned to either receive or not to receive a pretest and then randomly assigned to either a treatment or a comparison group. All participants then receive a posttest. This approach enables researchers to acquire the benefits of using a pretest, while also allowing an assessment of pretest sensitization.

Benefits of Pretest Inclusion

Researchers implement pretests with the goal of obtaining information regarding baseline levels of specific variables of interest (e.g., self-esteem, knowledge) prior to the ...

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