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Behavioral observation refers to methods for systematically observing behavior in ways that others can replicate. The intent is to produce scores that can then serve subsequent analyses, such as those employed by between- and within-subjects or single-case designs. As such, systematic behavioral observation is one of several measurement methods that can be employed in behavioral research. Other methods include questionnaires, such as those that provide a self-esteem or depressive mood score, or a score for personality traits like extroversion and neuroticism. Behavioral observation differs from other measurement methods in its use of predefined coding schemes used by trained observers, the need to ensure that observers are reliable, and the collection of (typically) voluminous data requiring reduction. Historically, behavioral observation methods were developed by those ...

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