Methods of Research


Research Method:

Research methods include all those techniques/methods that are adopted for conducting research. Thus, research techniques or methods are the methods that the researchers adopt for conducting the research studies.

The process used to collect information and data for the purpose of making business decisions. The methodology may include publication research, interviews, surveys and other research techniques, and could include both present and historical information.

Research Methodology:

research methodology is the way in which research problems are solved systematically. It is a science of studying how research is conducted scientifically. Under it, the researcher acquaints himself/herself with the various steps generally adopted to study a research problem, along with the underlying logic behind them. Hence, it is not only important for the researcher to know the research techniques/ methods, but also the scientific approach called methodology

Research is an ORGANIZED and SYSTEMATIC way of FINDING ANSWERS to QUESTIONS.

  • SYSTEMATIC because there is a definite set of procedures and steps which you will follow. There are certain things in the research process which are always done in order to get the most accurate results.
  • ORGANIZED in that there is a structure or method in going about doing research. It is a planned procedure, not a spontaneous one. It is focused and limited to a specific scope.
  • FINDING ANSWERS is the end of all research. Whether it is the answer to a hypothesis or even a simple question, research is successful when we find answers. Sometimes the answer is no, but it is still an answer.
  • QUESTIONS are central to research. If there is no question, then the answer is of no use. Research is focused on relevant, useful, and important questions. Without a question, research has no focus, drive, or purpose.

Research Approaches

There are two main approaches to research, namely quantitative approach and qualitative approach. The quantitative approach involves the collection of quantitative data, which are put to rigorous quantitative analysis in a formal and rigid manner. This approach further includes experimental, inferential, and simulation approaches to research. Meanwhile, the qualitative approach uses the method of subjective assessment of opinions, behavior and attitudes. Research in such a situation is a function of the researcher’s impressions and insights. The results generated by this type of research are either in non-quantitative form or in the form which cannot be put to rigorous quantitative analysis. Usually, this approach uses techniques like in-depth interviews, focus group interviews, and projective techniques.

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Methods of Research

  • Experiments:
    • True-Experiments
    • Quasi-Experiments
    • Pre-Experiments
  • Surveys
    • Questionnaires
    • Interviews
    • According to the Span of Time Involved
      • Cross-Sectional Surveys
      • Longitudinal Surveys
  • Case studies
    • Illustrative Case Studies.
    • Exploratory (or pilot) Case Studies.
    • Cumulative Case Studies.
    • Critical Instance Case Studies.
  • Participant and non-participant observation
  • Observational trials
    • Methods of Observational studies
      • Controlled Observations
      • Natural Observations
      • Participant Observations
    • Types of observational studies
      • Case-control study
      • Cross-sectional study
      • Longitudinal study
      • Cohort study or Panel study
      • Ecological study
  • Studies using the Delphi method

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