Research Methods 4 Data Collection Met

Topics: Research, Scientific method, Qualitative research Pages: 36 (1531 words) Published: December 6, 2014
NV4602

Research Methods for
Postgraduate Study
Revision
Data Collection Methods
Primary and Secondary Data

Objectives for Today
 Revise different research philosophies
 Review the differences between quantitative
and qualitative approaches
 Look at additional methods for data collection
 Explain the difference between primary and
secondary sources of data
 Discuss the relative advantages and
disadvantages of using primary and
secondary sources in a research project
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Review on Research
Philosophies

Main Research Philosophies

1. Positivism
2. Interpretivism
3. Realism

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Mary’s Example
 Mary decided to conduct a research project on
stress at work and its effects on employees.
 She could choose different ways to approach this
research:
 An experiment exploring self-reported levels of
stress and worker performance records
 An interview study where the researcher
investigates the perspective and views of workers
and managers
 A case study reviewing worker records in the work
environment and reviewing them in light of stressinducing characteristics of the work environment lbic.navitas.com

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Mary’s Example
 An experiment exploring self-reported levels of
stress and worker performance
 Positivism

 An interview study where the researcher
investigates the perspective of workers and
managers
 Interpretivism

 A case study reviewing worker records in the
work environment and reviewing them in light of
stress-inducing characteristics of the work
environment
 Realism
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Choosing a research strategy
 What will serve your research question
best?
 Links your research philosophy and data
collection/analysis methods.
 Strategies are part of a quantitative or
qualitative research design

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What is research design?
 The general plan of how you will go about
answering your research question
 A coherent framework that outlines each
procedure involved in all stages of the research,
from the hypothesis to the analysis.
 It relates to the Research Philosophy (see
lecture 2)
 It involves many choices (and explanations)
 One of the most important choices is about
whether you will follow a quantitative, or
qualitative (or mixed) research design.
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Choosing a research strategy
 Generally but not exclusively used in:
Quantitative
Research Design

Qualitative
Research Design

Experiment
Survey

Archival Research
Case study
Ethnography
Action Research

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Quantitative and Qualitative
Data

Qualitative and Quantitative Data
Quantitative Data
 Deals with sets and numbers
 Data that can be measured
 Examples include
 Length, height, area, volume, speed, time, temperature,
humidity, cost, age, etc.

 Different levels of quantification
 Nominal (sets, e.g. marital status)
 Ordinal (ordered sets, e.g. easy/hard difficulty)
 Interval (scales, e.g. temperature in Farenheit)
 Scalar (true measures, e.g. speed)

 Often used to generalise results
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Qualitative and Quantitative Data
Qualitative Data
 Deals with descriptions
 Data that can be observed, but not
measured
 Examples include
 senses (e.g. texture, smell, taste), subjective
judgements (e.g. beauty, singing ability),
descriptions, expressions

 Often used to provide insight and develop
understanding
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Qualitative and Quantitative Data
During study in a University context, I collected the following data. Classify them as Quantitative or Qualitative.













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