Scale of titles - General Psychological Workshop

Name scale

If the researcher's task assumes only the classification of objects, the result of his efforts is the weakest scale - the scale of names, or the nominal scale (from Latin nomen - name). This scale is used not only for scientific purposes, but also for solving a wide range of purely practical problems, far from psychology and other sciences.

As examples of such a scale, you can cite the numbering of training groups, articles of goods sold in the store, numbers of public transport routes. If you are in a self-service store, weighing the product you selected, indicate its number on the scale, you also encounter a scale of names.

The only empirical operation that allows one to compare the elements of this scale is the operation of establishing identity, or equivalence. Formally, this can be expressed by the following rule: if A = B, then B = A. In other words, this scale requires that all objects assigned to the same class be designated by the same number, and different classes - different numbers. In this case, the choice of numbers does not have any value.

For example, you can designate a group of students studying in the specialties "Clinical Psychology and "Psychology of Service Activities", as groups No. 1 and No. 2. Or, you can call them groups # 33 and # 24. Moreover, by establishing relationships

equivalence between groups # 1 and # 33. as well as between groups # 2 and # 24. we can use two numbers to identify the same academic group, as. for example, different codes are used on car numbers in the same region. This can happen if within one group we separate individual subgroups on some other trait - for example, for practicing a general psychological workshop. But in this case we are already building another classification, establishing new equivalence relations.

All objects that fall into one group are considered equivalent, and those who fall into different groups are not equivalent. For example, if we are talking about the training group number 33, then all the students of the young man, the girl, the blonde, the brunette, the diligent, the truant are considered absolutely interchangeable; if we need a student from group No. 33. it does not matter what sex he is, what color his hair is and how diligent he is. But if we need a student from group No. 33. we can not at all take a student from group No. 24, even if he is the twin brother of a student from group No. 33. This is the idea of ​​a one-to-one substitution transformation.

Having constructed a scale of names, we can carry out for the elements of this scale the simplest statistical calculations. For example, you can determine how many students study in group # 1, and how many in group # 2, determine the most numerous group (mode of distribution). We can also calculate the simplest measures of the relationship between two variables specified in the nominative scale.

Suppose we want to assess whether interest in texts of different subjects depends on their conformity to the reader's political beliefs. We can take two groups of texts that will express, say, the liberal and conservative beliefs of their authors, and pick up two groups of subjects who also have liberal and conservative beliefs. Further, let us designate liberal beliefs with the help of, say, 1, and conservative ones with the help of number 2. It is clear that the scale obtained by us will be a scale of names, since the only empirical operation here is the operation of establishing equivalence between the texts and the conviction class of their authors expressed in terms of the number , as well as between the subjects and their beliefs. We can not express other relations. We can not say that some beliefs are better, more progressive or more modern - they are just different.

But we can calculate, for example, how many subjects of each class rated each text as interesting or uninteresting, deserving or not deserving of attention. In Table. 5.2 these frequencies are designated as A, B, C and D. If it is found that the quantities A and D , on the one hand, there are more In and With on the other hand, this means that there is a statistical relationship between the two variables, the values ​​of which are measured in the name scale. Formally, the relationship can be estimated as follows:

Note that since we are talking about a scale of names that does not reflect the order relations between its elements, we can not estimate the calculated connection as positive or negative, as is the case when calculating the usual correlation coefficient. We can only say that two classes of phenomena are somehow related, to estimate the frequency of the joint occurrence of two phenomena. In the above example, the connection of preferred texts with the political beliefs of people is manifested in the fact that liberals are more likely to choose texts that express liberal views than texts of a conservative orientation.

Table 5.2

Evaluation of the statistical relationship for measurement results specified in the nominative scale

Test Subject

Text Class









In conclusion, we note that the scale of names does not contain any quantitative information: strictly speaking, it can not be called a measuring scale. It will not even be formal, if instead of numerical values ​​for a given scale, verbal notations will be used. However, if numbers are used as scale values, then formally it corresponds to the definition of Stevens, according to which the dimension is the assignment of numbers in accordance with the rules.

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