The 2nd Quarter Project Help Page

 

You see them on TV. You hear them on the radio. They pop up on the internet and are played before your movies. Advertisements are everywhere! Companies try to get you to spend your hard-earned money with them in exchange for goods or services that they provide.

Every ad will have a CLAIM in it that is incredibly similar to a hypothesis. It’s your job as the consumer to decide what KIND of claim they are making and whether or not the claim should be accepted. You’ll need to be able to identify the hidden hypothesis in every ad and then be able to design a test to see if the claim they made is accurate.

Some claims are not easily testable and should not be chosen. For example, any ad that claims you will be prettier, less hungry, happier, or smell better is basing that idea on your opinions .

One way to help decide if it is testable is to look at the measured variable (dependent variable) to see if it is a length, volume, mass, weight, time or temperature . If so, your odds of having a testable claim are good.

 

 Part I: Identify a Testable Claim

In this portion of the project you will need to identify the claim (hypothesis) made by Five (5) different commercials and/or advertisments you see on television, internet, hear on radio, or other media.

a commercial's claim(hypothesis) is testable when...
1. the necessary equipment exists
2. it is legal and ethical to do
3. it is repeatable
4. it is based on measurable fact, not opinion or emotion

Watch the following commercials and determine if they have a testable claim in them.

(Note: commercials used on this page are no longer usable in your project)

Minute Maid - Enhanced Juice Drink - "You saved Scooter!"
 

This commercial has a definite "before" and "after" section to it. It is clearly trying to persuade you to buy Minute Maid's Enhanced Juice Drink with a claim. No, it isn't saying you can make bunnies come back to life if you drink their product.

It is claiming "If Minute Maid Enhanced Juice Drink is consumed then the speed of solving mental problems will increase compared to no drink at all "

Chemical Science - Flex Seal - "Liquid Rubber in a Can!"
 

This commercial is FILLED with testable claims to use. "Infomercials" are wonderful for this project because they almost always test the product in multiple ways in the ad.

Flex-seal claims their product "instantly fills cracks and holes, remains completely flexible, covers easily with paint, it lasts a lifetime, creating a barrier that is totally waterproof, and keeps its hold in extreme heat and cold" each one is a testable claim (though some are easier to test than others)

Volkswagon - 2012 Passat - "Young Vader uses the Force"
 
Commercials like this SHOULD NOT be used in this project. This commercial is cute but it DOES NOT have a testable claim in it. VW is using emotion and feeling to sell the car. They are saying "If you buy the Passat you will feel like a kid again, or you will feel powerful like you have the Force. These are not easily testable ideas.
All State - Mayhem
  Commercials like this SHOULD NOT be used in this project. Ads that claim they have a better price than the "other guy" are all over the place. They are suggesting that you do RESEARCH and not an experiment. Please do not confuse comparing prices at different stores with a controlled experiment.

 

Now that you have researched FIVE testable commercial claims, compile them together one per page with logos and information in a colorful and neatly assembled booklet.

Step 1. make the booklet by hamburger folding two pieces of plain paper and stapling them together at the fold.

 

Step 2. Complete the cover page with the title of the project, your name and hour. If you want to express your creativity, you may include any pictures that are appropriate for a project on advertisements and commercials.

 

Step 3. Analyze each commerical/advertisement (one per page) by including the following information:

Make certain each of the first five pages of the booklet includes the following:

  • A color picture (colored, cutout, or printed) of the logo and/or product
  • Name of the company
  • Name of the product they are trying to sell
  • The testable “claim” that you hear or see in the advertisement written in the form of a hypothesis (if-then-compared to)
 

For example …

The company Minute Maid

is selling the product Minute Maid Enhanced Fruit Drink

The claim they make in their advertisement is:

If one serving of Minute Maid Enhanced Fruit Drink is consumed

then the time to complete simple mental tasks will be reduced

compared to no drink at all.

 

Step 4. Design a valid experiment for ONE (1) of the five commercials

Your 5 th testable claim will be used to design an experiment. You will use the last two pages of the booklet to describe what you would do to test the claim. Make certain you put the best claim last in your booklet so that it makes sense.

List all of equipment or supplies needed for the experiment

Test subject

Minute Maid Enhanced

cup

Two simple mental tasks

pencils

stopwatch

 

Identify the independent variable

Type of drink

 

Identify the dependent variable

Time to complete simple mental tasks

 

Identify SIX (6) variables to be held constant

Test subject

Location of test

Room temperature

Difficulty of task

Pencil size

Resting time before test

 

Identify the control group (plain, old, regular, doing what you normal do)

Time to complete simple mental task without a drink

 

Specifically describe the steps you would need to follow to test the product claim. You should have between 6-10 steps in your procedure.

THIS IS NOT A LIST OF THE STEPS TO THE SCIENTIFIC METHOD!