A double-blind procedure refers to a procedure in which experimenters and participants are “blind to” (without knowledge of) crucial aspects of a study, including the hypotheses, expectations, or, most important, the assignment of participants to experimental groups. This entry discusses the implementation and application of double-blind procedures, along with their historical background [Page 387]and some of the common criticisms directed at them.
“Double-blinding” is intimately coupled to randomization, where participants in an experimental study are allocated to groups according to a random algorithm. Participants and experimenters are then blinded to group allocation. Hence double-blinding is an additional control element in experimental studies. If only some aspect of a study is blinded, it is a single-blind study. This is the case when the measurement of an ...
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