Thereare four main purposes of carrying out a research. They includeexploration, explanation, description and predicting. Explorationentail gaining some familiarity with a certain subject, unearthingsome of its key dimensions and possibly planning for furtherstructured research. Exploration normally tests the feasibility forcarrying out a more comprehensive study (Babbie, 2008).
Somestudies are for the purpose of description. Description entailsdescribing situations and events through observation (Babbie, 2008).For instance in a Census Bureau’s report which seeks to describehow many people there are or a political poll projecting who willtriumph in an election.
Researchfor explanation purpose tries to go beyond description. It answersthe questions of what, where, when and how (Babbie, 2008). Forexample in establishing which brand consumers prefer, the researchmay seek to know why consumers prefer that particular product.
Researchcan also be for the purpose of predicting. Predicting involveprojecting what may happen in different scenarios. In most instances,these four purposes of research supplement each other. When researchis carried out to explore, it leads to the need for the researcher tocarry out descriptive research and later explanation of phenomena.All these purposes can also be used to predict phenomena or trends inbehavior or occurrences. For example, when marketer wanting to knowthe response of consumers to a new product.
Toestablish which city has the highest crime rate, the police chiefwill have to apply exploratory purpose of doing research. This willhelp in discovering some main themes of crime in the various cities,answering the researcher’s curiosity. Establishing why the researchis being done is important as it helps in choosing and applying theright techniques for the study.
Babbie,E. (2008). The basics of social research. Belmont, CA:Thomson/Wadsworth.