Common Research Methods In Research Methodology


What are the common research methods?

The methods and processes used in gathering and evaluate data to find responses to research questions and testing a research hypothesis are known as research methodologies. Research methodologies come in a variety of forms, each with advantages and disadvantages.

Basic Research Methodologies

In academic writings, a variety of primary research methodology types are used. The kind of research methodology used is determined by the sort of data to be gathered and evaluated, as well as any constraints or limitations that set the study’s resources and methods. Before selecting a research method or methodologies, it is also advised to look through publications from your desired journal and determine the approaches frequently utilized in these studies.

Surveys: These are a type of research techniques that entail gathering information from many of people via questionnaires or interviewing. In order to learn more about mindsets, opinions, and actions, surveys are frequently utilized.

Experiments: This is a form of research technique in which a number of variables are manipulated to see how they affect another variable. Testing links between causes and effects frequently involves experiments.

Case studies: These are a form of research techniques that entail a thorough analysis of a particular person, group, or occurrence. Case studies are sometimes utilized to get more in-depth details about a certain occurrence.

Observations: These are a form of research techniques that involve observing and documenting people’s or groups’ behavior. Information regarding naturalistic behavior is frequently gathered through observations.

Content Analysis: This is the analysis and interpretation of written or spoken text are steps in the research approach. Large volumes of data, such articles from the news or postings from social media, are frequently analyzed using content analysis.

Historical research: Here, the study of the past through the analysis of primary and secondary sources, such as papers, artefacts, and photographs is conducted.

It’s crucial to keep in mind that research techniques can be combined to provide a fuller picture of a research issue or hypothesis. For instance, a survey can be conducted after an experiment to learn more about the opinions and conduct of the participants.

In summary, the selection of research methodology is influenced by the study question, the kind of data required, and the resources that the investigator has.

Data Gathering Techniques

Data are pieces of information gathered to help with research queries. The nature of your research topic and the objectives of your study will determine the type of data you decide to collect. A researcher can gather data in a few different main categories.

Data types: quantitative versus qualitative

Both qualitative and quantitative data are frequently employed in research investigations. They differ in terms of their traits, the manner in which they are gathered, and the method in which they are examined.

Quantitative data is numerical and is gathered via techniques like polls, experiments, and surveys. It is frequently used to quantify and characterize the traits of a sizable collection of individuals or things. To uncover patterns and trends, this data can be statistically evaluated.

Instead of using numbers, qualitative data is gathered through techniques including focus groups, observations, and interviews. It is frequently used to comprehend the viewpoints, attitudes, and experiences of single people or small groups. To find patterns and themes, this data is studied using techniques including content evaluation, thematic evaluation, and discourse evaluation.

Generally speaking, qualitative data offers a more individualized and in-depth understanding of a phenomenon whereas quantitative data offers a more objective and universal perspective. Both kinds of information are crucial and can be combined to comprehend a subject more thoroughly.

Positives     Negatives
Qualitative data As the research goes on, the methods can be changed to address new questions. A smaller research or sample size may promote it. There is no requirement for statistical analysis or applications to larger populations or phenomena. Due to the difficulty in standardizing measurements, there is a heightened danger of research bias.
Quantitative data It produces data in a highly methodical and precise manner. The knowledge produced can be verified and repeated. Data analysis demands a knowledge of statistics. In order to produce useful data, larger sample sizes are required.  

Additionally, you can do your research using both qualitative and quantitative techniques.

Primary vs secondary data

In the fields of academics and market analysis, primary and secondary research are two separate kinds of research methods. In the majority of investigations, both primary and secondary sources may be used.

Primary research is investigation carried out by the person or group itself. It entails gathering unique data using techniques like surveys, interviewing, or experimentation. The information gathered through primary research, which is not frequently found through other sources, is particular to the research issue and aims.

Contrastingly, secondary research makes use of information that was previously acquired by somebody else. This can contain information from official reports, scholarly journals, or trade magazines. Because the material has already been gathered, secondary research often takes less time and costs less money than original research. The information might not, nevertheless, be as precise or pertinent to the goals and research topic.

The research subject, study budget, and project deadline, in addition to the intended journal to which you are sending your work, will determine whether you should use primary or secondary research.

  Positives Negatives
Primary data Can better respond to your research query. The restrictions and limits placed on the data are more in the researcher’s hands. Requires a lot of effort and time to gather. Needs a thorough understanding of data collection techniques.
Secondary data Much quicker and more convenient to access. Data can be gathered from a variety of places and times. No ability to modify or regulate the creation of data. Processing and confirming that the material is relevant takes more time.

Collection of data: descriptive versus experimental

A researcher alters one or more factors to see how they affect another factor in a controlled experiment to get experimental data. Finding cause-and-effect connections is the aim of experimental data. For instance, those participating would be randomly assigned to either a group receiving the drug or a group receiving a placebo in a study examining the efficacy of an upcoming medication for treating a specific illness. The results from the two groups will then be compared. Data from this research would be regarded as experimental data.

Conversely, descriptive data is information that is gathered by observation or surveys and is utilized to characterize the traits of a population or phenomena. Instead of establishing cause-and-effect connections, the aim of descriptive data is to present a picture of the current status of a particular population or phenomena. For instance, in a study on the eating patterns of a particular community, the researchers would gather information on the participants’ normal food intake and frequency of eating. This information would qualify as descriptive data.

In conclusion, descriptive data is gathered by observation to characterize the traits of a population or phenomenon, whereas experimental data is gathered using a controlled experiment to ascertain cause-and-effect correlations.

Illustrations of descriptive data:

1. A poll that inquires about respondents’ preferred musical genres

2. A census that counts the population in a certain region

3. a survey that inquires about respondents’ political preferences

Illustrations of experimental data:

1. A research evaluating the efficacy of two various treatments for a specific ailment

2. A study examining the impact of various chemical concentrations on plant growth

3. a medical study contrasting the negative consequences of novel treatments for diseases with those of existing ones

Research method Primary /secondary Qualitative /quantitative When used
Experiment Primary Quantitative To examine causal relationships.
Case study Either Either To thoroughly examine a particular instance, sometimes when you lack the resources to carry out a study with a big sample size.
Observation Primary Either To examine a phenomenon’s workings in its natural setting.
Literature Review Secondary Either To help place your findings in a larger body of work and/or find trends within a research area.
Content analysis Secondary Either To find certain words, themes, or concepts in a given set of qualitative data, frequently text.

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