The synergy of the quantitative and qualitative approaches in the mixed method approach was necessary to address the research problem in its totality.
The fact that the entire sample would be coming from the same university also ensured consistency in the measurement of one of the variables, which was the respondents' academic standing. This variable relates to the effects of the use of social networking on students.
The study used the nonprobability sampling technique since it would not be practical and feasible to do scientific random sampling (Trochim, 2006) from the entire student population of the University of Chester's Warrington campus given the scope and limitations of the study.
From among the nonprobability sampling techniques, purposive sampling (Trochim, 2006) was used, targeting undergraduate students of the university. This enabled the researcher to have quick access to the target sample since undergraduates make up the majority of the student population.
Under purposive sampling, nonproportional quota sampling (Trochim, 2006) was then used to ensure that male a...
Under purposive sampling, nonproportional quota sampling (Trochim, 2006) was then used to ensure that male and female students were represented, although not necessarily according to their actual distribution in the target population. Since the distribution of male and female students in general is not a fixed proportion in all schools, proportion was not deemed to be a relevant factor and representation of both genders was ensured instead.
Of the 50 respondents for the study, the target was to have no less than 20 male students and no less than 20 female students.
The respondents were then chosen from among volunteers who fit the criteria, on a first-come-first-serve basis, ensuring that the minimum number of male and female students was met.
Discussion of Variables
Quantitative variables (Quantitative data analysis, n.d.) covered by the study are the age of the respondents, number of male and female respondents, number of respondents who participate in social networking, the number of social networking sites joined by the respondent, the number of hours per day spent by the respondent on social networking sites, the number of hours per day spent by the respondent online, the number of hours per day spent by the respondent in recreational activities outside social networking sites, the number of hours per day spent by the respondent in class, the number of hours per day spent by the respondent studying outside class and the quality point average (QPA) of the respondent in the previous term.
The QPA of the respondent for the previous term is the closest most accurate measure possible for the respondent's academic standing. This measure was meant to be used to correlate the effect of the respondent's level of participation in social