In the given statements, the concept of independent and dependent variables is discussed in the context of various research projects. The independent variable, as explained by Helmenstine (2018), is the variable that is manipulated or controlled in a scientific experiment, while the dependent variable is the variable being tested and measured. The independent variable is the cause, and the dependent variable is the effect.
In the first statement, the project focuses on fall prevention in the long-term care (LTC) setting. The independent variables identified are the type of medication given to patients, the environment in which the patients live, the level of physical exercise, the level of stress, and the body strength of the patients. On the other hand, the dependent variables include the fall rates for the months of June and July, staff knowledge on fall prevention, the condition of patients after receiving anti-psychotic medication, the nature of patients’ body strength, and patient satisfaction. The researcher aims to measure these variables to determine the effectiveness of the implemented measures. By analyzing the results, the researcher can evaluate the impact of the independent variables on the dependent variables.
Similarly, in the second statement, the project focuses on the implementation of a new SBAR trauma transfer audit/form. The independent variable in this case is the implementation of the new form, while the dependent variables are the subjective feedback from staff and the statistical patient outcomes. The researcher proposes conducting a study before and after implementation to assess the effectiveness of the new form. This approach would involve collecting data by having nurses rate the communication between receiving and transferring facilities on a scale of 1-5 before and after the implementation of the new form. By comparing the ratings and analyzing the feedback, the researcher can determine the impact of the independent variable on the dependent variables.
In both cases, the relationship between the independent and dependent variables is viewed in terms of cause and effect. When the independent variable is changed or manipulated, an effect is observed in the dependent variable. It is important to note that in an experiment, both the independent and dependent variables can change, and their values are recorded. However, the crucial distinction lies in the fact that the experimenter controls the value of the independent variable, while the value of the dependent variable changes in response to the independent variable.
In conclusion, understanding the distinction between independent and dependent variables is essential for designing and conducting scientific experiments. The independent variable is the variable manipulated by the researcher, while the dependent variable is the variable being measured or tested. By analyzing the relationship between these variables, researchers can better understand cause and effect relationships and evaluate the effectiveness of their interventions or treatments.