Experiments are a scientific procedure which is used to test a hypothesis. There are two different types of experiments which are available to the researcher, these are laboratory and field.
In laboratory experiments all variables are under the control of the researcher, the researcher will obtain their results from taking two groups which are identical. One group will be the control group and the other will be the experimental group. The researcher will then alter the independent variable in the experimental group to see if the variable that the researcher is investigating changes in any way when compared to the control group. If there is no change in the experimental group when compared to the controlled one then the variable that was being manipulated is dismissed as a cause of what the researcher is investigating. If however, there is a change in the experimental group then the researcher can arrive at an explanation for the issue that was being investigated.
Laboratory experiments have a number of advantages, making them seem possible and desirable to use in social research. One of these advantages is the fact that it enables scientists to test their hypothesis in a controlled condition, knowing that there are no other variables or causes that can explain the change that they witnessed. Another advantage is that laboratory experiments are capable of being replicated, therefore it allows other researchers to test the same hypothesis to see if they can get the same results. This, therefore, can make laboratory experiments highly reliable.
However, there also a number of problems that can arise when using a laboratory experiment in social research that can make them seem not possible and very undesirable. One of these problems is that it is very difficult to isolate a single variable when studying social issues like crime or the underachievement in schools. This is because, as proven in many researches there are numerous reasons as to why people decide to...