· Formulate a hypothesis based on Kinship theory involving the amount or speed of contact with others based on relatedness.
· Choose two methods of communication that you regularly use to communicate with others (e.g. phone calls, text messaging, email, facebook, Instagram, etc).
· For example, you would predict that people on average will have more contact with siblings than cousins. You could also predict that mothers and aunts will communicate more often than fathers and uncles, respectively.
· A hypothesis is stated in a manner such as I hypothesize that individuals have more contacts with siblings than cousins.
· Based on your prediction, tabulate the number of contacts with relatives for the previous month.
· For example, if you predicted that contact with siblings is more common than cousins, then count the number of incoming and outgoing phone calls (text messages, etc) for each of these relative classes over the previous month.
· For example: Parents (separate mother and father communications if want to compare between them), aunts, uncles, full-siblings, half-siblings, cousins (from mother, and father side if applicable), second cousins, etc.
· Calculate the rate of contact for the respective relative classes over the 30 days.
· For example, if you had 20 contacts with your father, and 30 contacts with your mother, that is 20 contacts / 30 days = 0.67contacts/day for your father, and 30/30 = 1 contact/day for your mother.
· If you chose unbalanced categories such 2 siblings and 3 cousins, then we must now determine the rate per individual. Do this initially the same as above, so tabulate all contacts with the 2 siblings and divide that by 30 days to determine overall sibling contacts per day. Now, since there are two siblings, divide that number by 2. This will give you the average rate per sibling. Do the same for the 3 cousins to get the rate per cousin. Now they can be compared without worrying that there are more cousins than siblings.
· If you do not have relatives, or do not communicate with them, do this experiment with friends that you have varying degrees of history with (friends for one year vs friends for ten years, etc).
· If your hypothesis is based on speed of contact based on relatedness then reach out to at least two relatives from the respective relative categories (parents, siblings, cousins, second cousins, etc) using phone/social media (e.g. phone calls, text, facebook, etc), and ask a simple question or just say hello.
· Record the time taken to receive a response from each of these individuals. If they are fast, then record minutes, if they scatter across hours, then using hours is fine. Note if no response was received.
· If they don’t respond for a few days to the point it will jeopardize turning in the assignment on time, then just record them as not responsive after x amount of days (x = the number of days you chose before considering them non responsive).
· If you do not have relatives, then choose friends of various degrees of history with as above.
· Compose a ~500 word essay interpreting the data tabulated from above using kinship theory. What was your hypothesis? Why did you make that prediction (what was your reasoning)? What was your methods to investigate this hypothesis? What were your results? Did these findings support your hypothesis or was it not supported? Can you explain why your results did or did not conform with what you would expect for the average person? (if you used Instagram for contact but your parents do not while your aunts/uncles do then that might influence the results). Did you notice anything else of interest when doing this data collection? It is likely that your individual data might not follow the predicted pattern but that is perfectly fine and it will not influence your grade. That is why science involves collecting data over many individuals in controlled experiments.
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