A trend of the past several years has been the growing use of qualitative research for educational research. Qualitative research, broadly defined, means "any kind of research that produces findings not arrived at by means of statistical procedures or other means of quantification. Where quantitative researchers seek causal determination, prediction, and generalization of findings, qualitative researchers seek instead illumination, understanding, and extrapolation to similar situations. Qualitative analysis results in a different type of knowledge than does quantitative inquiry. " (Hoepfl, 1997, p.13). "During the past several decades, particularly during the 1970s and 1980s, naturalistic inquiry (or qualitative research) has gained considerable acceptance. Nevertheless, the debate between quantitative and qualitative methodologies, as competing positions, persists. It is important to recognize the limitations of viewing quantitative and qualitative methods as completely different or competing approaches" (Custer, 1996, p. 4). What exactly are the basic differences between the two forms of research? Hoepfl (1997) explains it by saying that "phenomenological inquiry, or qualitative research, uses a naturalistic approach that seeks to understand phenomena in context-specific settings. Logical positivism, or quantitative research, uses experimental methods and quantitative measures to test hypothetical generalizations (p. 14)". Custer (1996) also points out that "the qualitative-quantitative dichotomy dates back as early as the 17th century where quantitativists were characterized by some as ‘vulgar statisticians’".
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...." The decision to use qualitative methodologies should be considered carefully, though. "By its very nature, qualitative research can be emotionally taxing and extraordinarily time consuming. At the same time, it can yield rich information not obtainable through statistical sampling techniques" (Hoepfl, 1997, p. 37).
Custer, R. L. (1996). Qualitative research methodologies. Journal of Industrial Teacher Education, 34, 3-6.
Hoepfl, M.C. (1997, Fall). Choosing qualitative research: A primer for technology education researchers. Journal of Technology, 9, 12-39.
Johnson, S. D. (1995, Spring). Will our research hold up under scrutiny? Journal of Industrial Teacher Education, 32, 3-6.
Sutton, B. (1993). The rationale for qualitative research: A review of principles and theoretical foundations. Library Quarterly, 63, 411-430.
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- Qualitative Research for Instructional Technology Background: A trend of the past several years has been the growing use of qualitative research for educational research. Qualitative research, broadly defined, means "any kind of research that produces findings not arrived at by means of statistical procedures or other means of quantification. Where quantitative researchers seek causal determination, prediction, and generalization of findings, qualitative researchers seek instead illumination, understanding, and extrapolation to similar situations.... [tags: Qualitative Research in Education]
1071 words (3.1 pages)
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- Quantitative Research Quantitative research is based on statements such as "anything that exists exists in a certain quantity and can be measured." "While Thorndike’s statement from 1904 appears to be fairly innocent and direct, it staked an important philosophical position that has persisted in social science research throughout most to this century." (Custer, 1996, p. 3). In 1927, William F. Ogburn successfully lobbied to have Lord Kelvin’s motto: "When you cannot measure, your knowledge is meager and unsatisfactory" prominently and permanently carved onto the face of the University of Chicago’s social science research building." In this decade, however, the competing paradigms of quant... [tags: Scientific Research Science Essays]
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- Types of Qualitative Methods When a qualitative approach seems to make the most sense, the task becomes one of selecting the qualitative method or methods to be used. A number of different ways of framing qualitative methods exist. Lee, Mitchell, and Sablynski (1999) use purposes (e.g., theory generation, theory elaboration, theory testing, or critical theory), research design (e.g., case study, ethnography, and in-depth interviews), and analytic data techniques (e.g., grounded theory approaches, pattern matching in case study research, and hermeneutic techniques as a way of categorizing types of qualitative research.... [tags: Qualitative research, Scientific method]
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