Research Question: Effects of food impoverishment on students’ concentration





Thedependent variable in the above research topic which the study aimsat determining is students’ concentration. In this study, it hasbeen measured through an aptitude test that was taken every 2 hoursafter the deprivation exercise started for 12 hours. It is,therefore, a quantitative variable and continuous in nature.Concentration levels were ranked and measured on an ordinal scale.The independent variable which is not determined within the model isthe degree of food impoverishment or deprivation. This variable isalways taken as given. Food impoverishment was taken as a categoricalvariable. The students were grouped into two. Those who wereimpoverished and those who were not. It was measured on a nominalscale.

Asample of 30 students who included 10 female and 15 males wasrandomly selected from the class. All students on medication, dietingor weak were deliberately excluded from the study. The sample wasthen divided into two homogenous strata each with 15 members. Onegroup was subjected to food impoverishment while the other group wasallowed to feed. Results from the aptitude tests for both groups wererecorded. The mean, variance and the distribution of the results weredetermined. It was found out that as the number of hours increasedconcentration for the food deprived group decreased sharply. However,though concentration for the other group also decreased it was with aless margin. The data from the group that was allowed to feed wasfound to be normally distributed while data from the food deprivedgroup was negatively skewed meaning a high degree of variability fromthe mean.

Spearman’srank test for association was also carried out. It was found that astrong association between food deprivation and the degree of studentconcentration existed (0.75). The more students got hungry, the moreconcentration the lost. The goodness of fit was also tested and foundout to be 0.80. This implied that food impoverishment accounted for80% of all variations in the level of students’ concentration withonly 20% being explained by other factors outside the model. F-Statistic was also calculated to determine the overall significanceof the model and its variables at 95% confidence level. The nullhypothesis that food deprivation does not affect students’concentration was tested against the alternative hypothesis that fooddeprivation affects students’ concentration. The calculated F-statistics was bigger than the critical F statistics and thereforethe null hypothesis was rejected and a conclusion that fooddeprivation affects students’ concentration was arrived at.

Havingestablished a strong association between food impoverishment andstudents concentration, it was necessary to find out the direction ofthe relationship. A regression analysis was therefore carried out anda scatter plot drawn. The results of the regression analysis were asfollows Y=7.02 -0.73 X. X is the independent variable (Foodimpoverishment) while Y is the dependent variable (Students’concentration measured through aptitude tests). A negative sign showsa negative relationship between the two variables which implies thatthe line of best fit from the scatter plot was downward sloping. Onehour increase in the period of which the students was deprived offood reduced concentration by 0.73 (McBurney&amp White, 2004).We can, therefore, conclude that food impoverishment affectsstudents attention and needs to be avoided at all cost.

Regressionresults are very useful in prediction and forecasting. For instanceassuming 9 hours of food deprivation a student would score Y = 7.02 –0.73(9) = 0.45 in an aptitude test. This prediction however suffersfrom prediction error that is, the difference between the exactresults and the predicted results(ReSukal, 2013).For instance, if the actual Y is say 1, the prediction error would becalculated as 1- 0.45 = 0.55. We can, therefore, conclude that foodimpoverishment affects students concentration and needs to beavoided at all cost


McBurney,D. &amp White, T. (2004). Researchmethods.Australia: Thomson/Wadsworth.

ReSukal,M. (2013). Researchmethods: Applying statistics in research.San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.