Qualitative and Quantitative Research

Qualitativeand Quantitative Research

Qualitativeand Quantitative Research

Abstract

Theoverall rationaleforbothquantitative andqualitative researchin anyfieldorprofessionis to discoverthetruthof thediscipline.Thispaperexemplifiesbothquantitative andqualitative researchmethodsby evaluatingthestrengthsandweaknessesof eachmethod.Thoughneithermethodis consideredsuperiorto theother,quantitative researchmethodis describedas beingmoreobjectiveandreliable,andableto produceresultsthat validly indicatetherelationshipbetween differentvariables. Quantitative researchmethodisdescribedas thecauseandeffectrelationshiptechniquethat looksforthe reproductivity,standardizationandmeasurability. On theotherhandqualitative researchmethodaimsat interpreting andunderstandingcontexts,behaviorsandinterrelationship. Fundamentally,quantitative researchis objectivein its approachwhilequalitative methodis subjective.Whilequantitative researchseeksexplanatoryprinciples,qualitative methodaimsat offeringa comprehensivedescription.Quantitative methodsevaluatewhatis describeda staticrealityin a bidto developuniversalprinciples.Qualitative methodis an investigationof whatis presumedto be dynamicreality.Thismethoddoesnot assertthatwhatisascertainedin theresearchprocessis universal,andthusreplicable.

Theoverall rationaleforbothquantitative andqualitative researchin anyfieldorprofessionis to discoverthetruthof thediscipline.Themotivationof qualitative andquantitative researchin two dissimilarparadigmstheconstructionism andpositivism accountto a largeextentto thedifferencebetween thetwo methodsof data analysis(Saglam,2009).Quantitative researchisdescribedby two termspositivism andempiricismwhich arederivedfrom thescientificapproachappliedin thephysicalsciences.Quantitative researchmethodis a formal,objectiveandmethodicalprocedurein which statisticaldata is usedto measureandquantify differentphenomenaandproducefindings(Anderson, 2006).Itexemplifiestestsandexaminescauseandeffectrelationshipusingdeductive processof knowledgeattainment(Bamberger,2000). Whilequantitative researchtesttheorydeductively from existingknowledge,by developinghypothesized linkandintendedresultsfromstudy,qualitative researchis funneled by specificideas,hunchesandperspectivesrelatingto a givensubjectthatis under investigation.Qualitative researchis alsodifferentfrom quantitative researchin thewayitdevelopsits theory.There is noexplicitintentionto quantify theresults(inductive approach),which insteadarediscussedin thelanguagesusedin theresearchprocess(Landy&amp Conte, 2010).

QuantitativeResearch

Quantitativeresearchisdescribedas theprocessof explaininga phenomenonby gatheringnumericaldata that are analyzedusingmathematicallybased techniquessuchas statistics (Anderson,2006).Quantitative researchis describedas moreobjectiveas comparedto qualitative researchbecauseof theuseof hypothesisthat are testedusinga deductiveapproach(Goodwin&amp Goodwin, 1996). Itis decisivein its purposeas itseeksto quantify theproblemandidentifyhowinvasive itis by lookingforprojectable outcometo a biggerpopulation.In thisprocess,datais gatheredthrough primarysourcessuchas intervieworsurveysorsecondarysourcessuchas statisticaljournalsandotherwrittenmaterials(Anderson,2006).

Qualitativeresearchisusedas a toolto studytheempiricalworldfrom thestandpointof thesubjectandnot from theangleof theresearcher. It,therefore, expandson theaforementioned aspects.Thegoalof qualitative researchis to explainparticularaspectsof thephenomenon,with theaimof describingthesubjectof thestudy.In qualitative research,themethodology is alsodescribedas an idealisticapproach,with its rootsdeeplyembeddedin thedisciplinesof sociology,history,psychology,anthropologyandphilosophy.Thehistoricalbasisof qualitative researchisidentifiedas one of thegreatestweaknessof thismethod(Anderson,2006).

Inquantitative researchtheresearcher adoptsa detached,objectiveviewto be ableto understandthefacts.In thisrespects,thereis nodirectcontactbetween theinvestigatorandthesubject.Thismeansthattheresearcher can avoidinvolvement,guardingagainst biasingthestudyandmaintainingobjectivity. On theotherhandin qualitative research,theinvestigatorandthesubjectsmaintaina closerelationship(Francis,Robbins, &amp Astley, 2009).

QualitativeResearch

Qualitativeresearchis moreappropriatein dealingwith smallsamples.Insteadof experimenting,measuringandtestingdata todescribe the relationship between variables objectively,qualitative researchadoptsa subjectiveapproachthat is designedto lookpast thenumbersto showthe relationshipbetween variables (Anderson,2006).Asaforementioned qualitative methodis exploratory andisappliedwhentheresearcher doesnot knowwhatto expect,to definetheproblem,orto developan approachto a problem.Thismethodis alsousedto exploregradationslinkedto theproblembeingaddressed.Themostwidelyusedsourcesof data forqualitative researchincludeobservations,triads,interviewsandan ethnographicparticipation.

Strengthsand Weaknesses of Qualitative Research

Thekeystrengthof qualitative researchis that,an investigatorcan determinetheidiographic causation andabilityto buildknowledgeabout newphenomenonandcomplexinterrelations that havenot yetbeenstudiedat all(Linda.2004).Additionally, thedata usedin qualitative analysisis based on theinvestigatorsowncategoriesof meaning,andas suchitis exceptionallyvaluableforan in-depthstudyof a limitednumberof cases.Qualitative researchis alsoaptin exemplifyingmultifaceted phenomenawherequantitative researchmay be difficultto use.Thismethodcan alsoconducta crosscomparisonanalysissince itoffersa thoroughdescriptionandunderstandingof people’sexperiencesof a givenphenomena.In qualitative research,theinvestigatorcan studydynamicprocessessince theyhavethepowerto identifysettingandcontextual elementsas theyrelateto thetopicunder study.Aresearcher can alsoprincipallyapplyqualitative techniqueof grounded theoryinductivelyto gather a tentative but explanatory theory about a particularphenomenon (Kervin,2006). Thistypeof researchis alsoveryresponsiveto localsettingsince thedata thattheinvestigatorusesisgatheredin a naturalistic setting.

Themainweaknessof qualitative researchis thatan investigatorspersonalidiosyncrasiesandbiasescan invariablyinfluencetheresultsof thestudy.Theknowledgegeneratedin thistypeof researchmight not generalizeto otherindividualsorothercontexts(Linda.2004).Thefindingsof qualitative researchmay be uniqueto thelimitedsubjectsincludedin thestudy,

Strengthsand Weaknesses of Quantitative Research

Thedata gatheredin thistypeof researchis numerical,andthestrengthof generating numbersas data is thatis showsan orderedsystem.Thestrengthin numbersillustratesthenumerousstrengthsof thistypeof research(Linda.2004).Researchpeggedon numeralsandstatisticalapproachconductingtestsandanalysesthat produceresultsthat aremorereliableandobjectivethan thatof qualitative research.Dueto the fact that quantitativestudyisstronglyrootedon statistics andnumbersitcaneffectivelytransformdata into easilyexperimentalgraphsandcharts(Anderson,2006).Themainweaknessof quantitative researchis thatdata that doesnot displayanyformof significancein thestudyisalwaysneglected.Immenseattentionisaccordedon limiteddata of therespondents (sample) leavingmajorityunexplored. Thissignificantly distortstheassessmentof thedata (Carr, 2004).

Conclusion

Quantitativeresearchmethodisdescribedas thecauseandeffectrelationshiptechniquethat looksforthe reproductivity,standardizationandmeasurability. It isalso describedas theprocessof explaininga phenomenonby gatheringnumericaldata that are analyzedusingmathematicallybased techniquessuchas statistics (Anderson,2006).Quantitative researchis describedas moreobjectiveas comparedto qualitative researchbecauseof theuseof hypothesisthat are testedusinga deductiveapproach(Goodwin&amp Goodwin, 1996). Qualitativeresearchis moreappropriatein dealingwith smallsamples.Insteadof experimenting,measuringandtestingdata todescribe the relationship between variables objectively,qualitative researchadoptsa subjectiveapproachthat is designedto lookpast thenumbersto showthe relationshipbetween variables. Thekeystrengthof qualitative researchis that,an investigatorcan determinetheidiographic causation andabilityto buildknowledgeabout newphenomenonandcomplexinterrelations that havenot yetbeenstudiedat all.Themainweaknessof qualitative researchis thatan investigatorspersonalidiosyncrasiesandbiasescan invariablyinfluencetheresultsof thestudy.. Dueto the fact that quantitativestudyisstronglyrootedon statistics andnumbers,itcaneffectivelytransformdata into easilyexperimentalgraphsandcharts.Researchpeggedon numeralsandstatisticalapproachconductingtestsandanalysesthat produceresultsthat aremorereliableandobjectivethan thatof qualitative research.Themainweaknessof quantitative researchis thatdata that doesnot displayanyformof significancein thestudyisalwaysneglected.

References

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Bamberger,M. (2000). Integratingquantitative and qualitative research in development projects.Washington, DC.

Carr,L.T. (2004).Thestrengths and weaknesses of quantitative and qualitative research:what method for nursing?Department of Professional Development, Wealden College of Health andSocial Studies, East Surrey Hospital, Redhill, Surrey, England

Francis,L. J., Robbins, M., &amp Astley, J. (2009). Empiricaltheology in texts and tables: Qualitative, quantitative andcomparative perspectives.Leiden: Brill.

Goodwin,W. L., &amp Goodwin, L. D. (1996). Understandingquantitative and qualitative research in early childhood education.New York [u.a.: Teachers College Press.

Kervin,L. (2006). Researchfor educators.South Melbourne: Thomson Social Science Press.

Landy,F. J., &amp Conte, J. M. (2010). Workin the 21st century: An introduction to industrial and organizationalpsychology.Malden, Mass: Wiley-Blackwell.

Linda.T.(2004).TheStrengths and Weaknesses of Qualitative and Qualitative ResearchWhat Method from Nursing?Journal of Advanced Nursing. Redhill:England.

Saglam,O..(2009).Howdo qualitative and quantitative research differ?.Departmentof Management, Technology, and Economics.Zurich,Switzerland

Thomas,R. M. (2003). Blendingqualitative &amp quantitative research methods in theses anddissertations.Thousand Oaks, Calif: Corwin Press.