Design of experiments: an overview

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  • Date: 14 Mar 2013

Experiments aim to test causal relationships between independent and dependent variables while ruling out any alternative explanation of the relationship observed in the experiment. To achieve this, experimentation involves standardization and control of external factors, and random assignment of test units to experimental conditions. Experiments that are using existing groups of test units are called quasi-experiments. Field experiments involve the implementation of experimental procedures within a real or realistic setting, which reduces control but enhances external validity (Oppewal, Harmen 'Experimental Design', Wiley International Encyclopedia of Marketing, 2010).

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