Qualitative and Quantitative Research Methods

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Quantitative and Qualitative Research Methods

Sabina Baniya
Kathmandu University School of Management
Kathmandu University, Kathmandu

February 2013

There are different research methods that have been guided by different philosophy of science that were developed by philosopher, researcher and sociologist at their time of era. The well-known research methods are quantitative research methods. Quantitative are numerical methods associated with deductive approaches. Quantitative research methods are usually guided by the principles of positivism as it takes on objective reality and accepts single reality. Quantitative methods are usually used to measure size, observe numerical change over time, audience segmentation, testing hypothesis, and, quantifying attitudes, behaviors and opinions. The main importance of quantitative research is on deductive reasoning which tends to move from the general to the specific. The validity of conclusions is shown to be dependent on one or more premises being valid. For example, All students who study MBA in Kathmandu University works in a bank. Seema studies in MBA in Kathmandu University. Based on the premises, we can say that Seema works in a bank. Premises used in deductive reasoning are important because faulty premises can lead to wrong conclusions.

Another popular method is qualitative method, which are usually associated with inductive approaches. Qualitative research methods are used on subjective matter, as in-depth study to explore subject matter. Qualitative research methods are guided by philosophies as post-positivism, critical theory, and constructivism. Qualitative research methods offer different kinds of ways to investigate on research problems as interview methods, focused group discussions,case studies and many others to understand the certain circumstances or culture in the society.

The approach adopted by qualitative...
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