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❶In some cases, the researchers might monitor people when they are middle-aged and then again after 15 years and so on.

Quantitative research

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Experiments
Types of research

The researcher is accepting or refuting the null hypothesis. The results generated are analyzable and are used to test hypotheses , with statistics giving a clear and unambiguous picture. This research method is one of the most difficult, requiring rigorous design and a great deal of expense, especially for larger experiments.

The other problem, where real life organisms are used, is that taking something out of its natural environment can seriously affect its behavior. It is also the biggest drain on time and resources, and is often impossible to perform for some fields, because of ethical considerations. The Tuskegee Syphilis Study was a prime example of experimental research that was fixated on results, and failed to take into account moral considerations. In other fields of study, which do not always have the luxury of definable and quantifiable variables - you need to use different research methods.

These should attempt to fit all of the definitions of repeatability or falsifiability , although this is not always feasible. Opinion based research methods generally involve designing an experiment and collecting quantitative data. For this type of research, the measurements are usually arbitrary, following the ordinal or interval type. Questionnaires are an effective way of quantifying data from a sample group, and testing emotions or preferences.

This method is very cheap and easy, where budget is a problem, and gives an element of scale to opinion and emotion. These figures are arbitrary, but at least give a directional method of measuring intensity. By definition, this experiment method must be used where emotions or behaviors are measured, as there is no other way of defining the variables.

Whilst not as robust as experimental research , the methods can be replicated and the results falsified. Observational research is a group of different research methods where researchers try to observe a phenomenon without interfering too much. Observational research methods, such as the case study , are probably the furthest removed from the established scientific method.

Observational research tends to use nominal or ordinal scales of measurement. Observational research often has no clearly defined research problem , and questions may arise during the course of the study. Observation is heavily used in social sciences, behavioral studies and anthropology, as a way of studying a group without affecting their behavior. Their layout is an art form in itself because in poorly laid out questionnaires respondents tend, for example, to repeat their ticking of boxes in the same pattern.

If given a choice of response on a scale , they will usually opt for the middle point, and often tend to miss out subsections to questions. You need to take expert advice in setting up a questionnaire, ensure that all the information about the respondents which you need is included and filled in, and ensure that you actually get them returned. Expecting people to pay to return postal questionnaires is sheer folly, and drawing up a really lengthy questionnaire will also inhibit response rates.

You will need to ensure that questions are clear, and that you have reliable ways of collecting and managing the data. Setting up a questionnaire that can be read by an optical mark reader is an excellent idea if you wish to collect large numbers of responses and analyse them statistically rather than reading each questionnaire and entering data manually.

You would find it useful to consult the range of full and excellent research books available. These will deal in much greater depth with the reasons for, processes of holding, and processes of analysing data from the variety of research methods available to you. Home Research methods Choosing appropriate research methodologies Choosing appropriate research methodologies Choosing qualitative or quantitative research methodologies Your research will dictate the kinds of research methodologies you use to underpin your work and methods you use in order to collect data.

Interviews Interviews enable face to face discussion with human subjects. If you decide to use interviews: Draw up a set of questions that seem appropriate to what you need to find out. Do start with some basic closed questions name etc.

Don't ask leading questions. Try them out with a colleague. Pilot them, then refine the questions so that they are genuinely engaged with your research object. Contact your interviewees and ask permission, explain the interview and its use. This involves a move from the specific to the general and is sometimes called a bottom-up approach.

However, most research projects also involve a certain degree of deductive reasoning see section on quantitative research for more details.

Qualitative researchers do not base their research on pre-determined hypotheses. Nevertheless, they clearly identify a problem or topic that they want to explore and may be guided by a theoretical lens - a kind of overarching theory which provides a framework for their investigation.

The approach to data collection and analysis is methodical but allows for greater flexibility than in quantitative research. Data is collected in textual form on the basis of observation and interaction with the participants e. It is not converted into numerical form and is not statistically analysed. Data collection may be carried out in several stages rather than once and for all. The researchers may even adapt the process mid-way, deciding to address additional issues or dropping questions which are not appropriate on the basis of what they learn during the process.

In some cases, the researchers will interview or observe a set number of people. In other cases, the process of data collection and analysis may continue until the researchers find that no new issues are emerging. This may mean adopting a less formal and less rigid approach than that used in quantitative research.

It is believed that people are constantly trying to attribute meaning to their experience. Consequently, the methods used may be more open-ended, less narrow and more exploratory particularly when very little is known about a particular subject.

The researchers are free to go beyond the initial response that the participant gives and to ask why, how, in what way etc. In this way, subsequent questions can be tailored to the responses just given.

Qualitative research often involves a smaller number of participants. This may be because the methods used such as in-depth interviews are time and labour intensive but also because a large number of people are not needed for the purposes of statistical analysis or to make generalizations from the results.

The objectives of the two types of research and their underlying philosophical assumptions are simply different. The pragmatic approach to science involves using the method which appears best suited to the research problem and not getting caught up in philosophical debates about which is the best approach.

Pragmatic researchers therefore grant themselves the freedom to use any of the methods, techniques and procedures typically associated with quantitative or qualitative research. They recognise that every method has its limitations and that the different approaches can be complementary. They may also use different techniques at the same time or one after the other. For example, they might start with face-to-face interviews with several people or have a focus group and then use the findings to construct a questionnaire to measure attitudes in a large scale sample with the aim of carrying out statistical analysis.

Depending on which measures have been used, the data collected is analysed in the appropriate manner. However, it is sometimes possible to transform qualitative data into quantitative data and vice versa although transforming quantitative data into qualitative data is not very common.

Being able to mix different approaches has the advantages of enabling triangulation. Triangulation is a common feature of mixed methods studies. It involves, for example:. In some studies, qualitative and quantitative methods are used simultaneously.

In others, first one approach is used and then the next, with the second part of the study perhaps expanding on the results of the first. For example, a qualitative study involving in-depth interviews or focus group discussions might serve to obtain information which will then be used to contribute towards the development of an experimental measure or attitude scale, the results of which will be analysed statistically.

As they aim to bring about positive change in the lives of the research subjects, their approach is sometimes described as emancipatory. It is not a neutral stance. The researchers are likely to have a political agenda and to try to give the groups they are studying a voice.

As they want their research to directly or indirectly result in some kind of reform, it is important that they involve the group being studied in the research, preferably at all stages , so as to avoid further marginalising them.

The researchers may adopt a less neutral position than that which is usually required in scientific research. This might involve interacting informally or even living amongst the research participants who are sometimes referred to as co-researchers in recognition that the study is not simply about them but also by them. The findings of the research might be reported in more personal terms, often using the precise words of the research participants.

Whilst this type of research could by criticised for not being objective, it should be noted that for some groups of people or for certain situations, it is necessary as otherwise the thoughts, feelings or behaviour of the various members of the group could not be accessed or fully understood. Vulnerable groups are rarely in a position of power within society.

For this reason, researchers are sometimes members of the group they are studying or have something in common with the members of the group. Is Alzheimer's disease hereditary? Is there a test that can predict Alzheimer's disease? How is Alzheimer's disease diagnosed?

Diagnosis of dementia Disclosure of the diagnosis Facing the diagnosis Taking care of yourself Developing coping strategies Maintaining a social network Attending self-help groups Accepting help from others Dealing with feelings and emotions Changing roles and how you see yourself On a more positive note Organising family support Dealing with practical issues Financial and administrative matters Driving Safety issues Employment issues Healthy eating Contact and communication Speaking, listening and communication Signs, symbols and texts Personal relationships Talking to children and adolescents Changing behaviour Lack of interest in hobbies Disorientation Managing everyday tasks Keeping an active mind Services Caring for someone with dementia The onset of the disease Diagnosis: Dealing with emotions Arranging who will be responsible for care Determining to what extent you can provide care How will Alzheimer's disease affect independent living?

About Incontinence, Ageing and Dementia Part 2: What implications for people with dementia and their carers?

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Types of research methods can be classified into several categories according to the nature and purpose of the study and other attributes. In methodology chapter of your dissertation, you are expected to specify and discuss the type of your research according to the following classifications.

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Observational research is a group of different research methods where researchers try to observe a phenomenon without interfering too much. Observational research methods, such as the case study, are probably the furthest removed from .

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the use of several different researchers (investigator triangulation) the use of multiple perspectives to interpret the results (theory triangulation) the use of multiple methods to study a research problem (methodological triangulation) In some studies, qualitative and quantitative methods are used simultaneously. Types of Research Methods Adapted from Edvantia SBR Rating for Technical Assistance Programs and Services form () and Carter McNamara Overview of Methods to Collect Information handout.

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Research can be classified in many different ways on the basis of the methodology of research, the knowledge it creates, the user group, the research problem it . General Format of a Research Publication Background of the Problem (ending with a problem statement) — Why is this important to study? What .