In this paper, I will define quantitative and qualitative research methods and provide examples in the context of social issues which will hopefully provide insight into how this methods are properly applied.
Social issues are very broad and diverse and are usually made up of factors or consequences which directly or indirectly affect a person or many members of a society and are considered to be problems, controversies or both and are related to moral values, therefore their immediate social environment may become vulnerable in some respect which may also effect several individuals environment and in turn society.
There are two methods of approaching study of the world; deductive and inductive (L. Osburn, personal communication, August 11, 2011).
Quantitative research uses a deductive reasoning also known as top to bottom or (top down approach) starting with a theory, then the hypothesis, followed by observation and finally confirmation , going from the general to the more specific. Quantitative methods use numbers and statistics to show the results of the research exercise and mainly are concerned with mathematics and statistics. In quantitative research there are levels of measurement being firstly nominal which are names of things followed by ordinal sequence of things, interval where the sequence has equal distance between each item, and ratio where there is a true zero (Alston & Bowles, 2003, p. 7-9).
Quantitative research is the oldest form of research; it is incredibly formal, stemming from positivism paradigm, or the outside looking in approach. The method is about trying to establish cause and affect relationships between variables. This method can be considered non biased as the researcher isn’t us...
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Qualitative research aims to gather information from data collection methods and transform it into written words. Such as transcribing recorded interviews, taking field notes from observations, using words to outline images (Denscombe, 1998, p. 174). On the other hand, quantitative research aims to gather information from data collection methods and transform it into numbers. Such as analysing conducted surveys and pulling numbers to transform it into statistics, tables and graphs (Denscombe, 1998, p.174-177).
Research can be quantitative and qualitative. Quantitative research is objective and involves measuring the phenomena under investigation. Qualitative research is subjective, explores experiences and feelings, and involves the recording of phenomena that cannot easily be quantified (Toates, 2010, pp. 5-6). Both are empirical since they involve data collection (OU, n.d.).
According to Smith (1983) quantitative research is to explain, predict and develop laws that can be universally applied and Qualitative research is the interpretation and understanding of what people give to their situation. The researchers clearly stated the purpose of their studies, aim, objectiv...
A quantitative research method is different from the qualitative approach. And it is best used to conduct community science observations on big groups. However, quantitative approach is conducted by means of a non-natural setting and an extensive research of statistical records. This method uses observations that will have a quantity value and comparison. Quantitative research is conducted by using questionnaires filled with questions that relate to mathematical expressions. Research field work begins with a simple questionnaire which will include questions related to mathematical computations, such as, number of hours or days it takes to complete a task. A good example given by Bates & Cozby (2012), “You might take the quantitative approach by developing a questionnaire that you would ask a sample to teenagers to complete. You would ask about the number of hours they work, the type of work they do, their levels of stress…” (Bates & Cozby, 2012, p. 114). This approach gathers data from historical information and databases, but never conducts analysis of the panorama in a natural
The term methods refers to the ways in which researchers collect data to build their argument. All empirical research, regardless of whether it is considered to be qualitative (QUAL), quantitative (QUAN), or both, as in mixed mode research (MMR), include a discussion of research methodology (Schensul, 2008b). Most qualitative research refer to the constituent components of research methodology; guiding paradigms, aspects of research design, definitions of terminology, methods of data collection, and analysis and dissemination. Theory is extremely important in providing the initial arguments for the study, framing its formative conceptual model, and guiding directions in data collection and
This chapter presents the methodology that would be used in the study. The methodology covers issues that relate to the type of data that would be collected, how it would be collected, and how it would be analysed.
In the field of social sciences research, there are two distinctive contending ideologies: the quantitative (or positivist) approach where research inquiries are from the "outside" and the qualitative (or naturalist) approach where research inquiries are
On the other hand, Quantitative research refers to “variance theory” where quantity describes the research in terms of statistical relationships between different variables (Maxwell, 2013). Quantitative research answers the questions “how much” or “how many?” Quantitative research is an objective, deductive process and is used to quantify attitudes, opinions, behaviors, and other defined variables with generalized results from a larger sample population. Much more structured than qualitative research, quantitative data collection methods include various forms of surveys, personal interviews and telephone interviews, polls, and systematic observations. Methods can be considered “cookie cutter” with a predetermined starting point and a fixed sequence of
Liamputtong, P. & Ezzy, D., 2005, Qualitative research methods, 2nd ed., Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Victoria, pp. 12-31.
The research approach employed in Qualitative is inductive whereas Quantitative has a deductive approach. The Quantitative research is more about cause and effect relationship between the variables whereas Qualitative research is based on meaning and discovery of knowledge. The focus of Quantitative research is narrow and concise whereas the focus of Qualitative research is broad and complex. (Allwood, 2011)
A research design refers to the whole research plan namely, aim and objectives of the study, methods of collecting data and analytical techniques used so as to ensure that the data is able to answer the research question (Roberts, Sitas & Greenstein 2003:10-11). There are two types of research design, namely, qualitative and quantitative. It is important to note that research design for qualitative and quantitative is overall the same as both designs originate from an idea they seek to understand phenomena and the world around. However, discrepancies are evident mainly with regards to data collection and also what the research seeks to achieve (Greenstein, Roberts and Sitas, 2003: 14). The objectives of this essay are to discuss key elements of qualitative and quantitative research designs, including the distinction between them. The distinction between these two research designs will also be compared with scientific and non-scientific approaches. Empirical examples illustrating the usefulness of the two designs are also given. This essay will focus on the key characteristics on aspects of data being used and its collection techniques, how it’s used and analysed as discussed by Popper (1989), Ragin (2000), Flyvbjerg (20010, Janesick (2000), De Vaus (2001), Denzin (2000) and Greenstein, Roberts and Sitas (2003).
To collect valid and reliable data for the investigation, the researcher combined qualitative and quantitative methods to conduct “mix methods research” (Creswell, Plano, Gutmann & Hanson, 2003, p.42) because Dörnyei (2007) claimed that qualitative and quantitative methods had equal contribution in theorising as they can support each other. Furthermore, the two methods were adopted to attain an entire understanding of a target phenomenon or to justify one series of results against the other (Sandelowski, 2003). As regards quantitative and qualitative methods, according to Conrad & Serlin (2011), qualitative research methods paid attention to exploring the experiences, perspectives, and mindsets of the participants. In other words, the qualitative
According to (John W. Creswell 2003 and Gunderson 2000) giving a very clear definition that quantitative research method is the type of research by using collecting numerical data to explaining the particular phenomena and the numerical data that can be analyze by using mathematically. Quantitative research method, researcher will design a quantitative from for respondent to answer the question with numbers and the researcher will collect the numerical data as an evidence from the respondent. The researcher will according the data and analyze by using the mathematically method and statistics. The strength of quantitative research is neutral and can be easily analyze.
Qualitative and quantitative research methods take different approaches to gathering and analysing information. Whether it is a qualitative or quantitative study, the research study begins with a question or series of questions. Both use rigorously designed studies to get the most accurate, detailed and complete results. Qualitative studies common methods are interviews, surveys and observation. A qualitative study aims to provide a detailed description of the study results, often using pictures and written descriptions to describe what the research revealed. A qualitative study looks at the big picture, helping researchers to narrow in on points of interest that then can be followed up on in a quantitative study. While a quantitative study has a narrower focus, it attempts to provide a detailed explanation of the study focus, along with this using numbers and statistics. And the results from a quantitative study can reveal bigger questions that call for qualitative study. Or vice versa a qualitative study may reveal at analysis that a more focus and direct approach may be needed. With both methods analysis is a key part of any study whether qualitative or quantitative.