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For example, if you remove a loud noise from the room, will the person next to you be able to hear you?
In addition, you could observe that turning the knob clockwise alone, and nothing else, caused the sound level to increase.
You could further conclude that a causal relationship exists between turning the knob clockwise and an increase in volume; not simply because one caused the other, but because you are certain that nothing else caused the effect.
You approach a stainless-steel wall, separated vertically along its middle where two halves meet.
After looking to the left, you see two buttons on the wall to the right. A soft tone sounds and the two halves of the wall slide apart to reveal a small room. Looking to the left, then to the right, you see a panel of more buttons. On the far wall, a sign silently proclaims, "10th floor." You have engaged in a series of experiments.
Matching may be problematic, though, because it "can promote a false sense of security by leading [the experimenter] to believe that [the] experimental and control groups were really equated at the outset, when in fact they were not equated on a host of variables" (Jones, 291). This method is based on the statistical principle of normal distribution.
In other words, you may have flowers for your Mega Gro experiment that you matched and distributed among groups, but other variables are unaccounted for. Theoretically, any arbitrarily selected group of adequate size will reflect normal distribution.
Differences between groups will average out and become more comparable.
The principle of normal distribution states that in a population most individuals will fall within the middle range of values for a given characteristic, with increasingly fewer toward either extreme (graphically represented as the ubiquitous "bell curve").
From past experiences in life or from the knowledge we possess in our specific field of study, we know how some actions cause other reactions. Experimentation becomes more complex when the causal relationships they seek aren't as clear as in the stereo knob-turning examples. " or "Will this new fertilizer help this plant grow better? For example, any number of things could affect the growth rate of a plant-the temperature, how much water or sun it receives, or how much carbon dioxide is in the air.
These variables can affect an experiment's results.