The difference between quantitative and qualitative research is something that each and every researcher and/or scholar must consider; both with respect to the research designs and methodologies that are created as well as the research designs and methodologies that are read,…
It is the hope of this author that such a level of discussion and analysis will be beneficial with respect to providing a basis through which the reader can more effectively comprehend the differential between these two and seek to apply the approach that suits their needs and research goals to the highest degree. Finally, the two different research methods themselves will be illustrated by a short analysis and review of respective articles that illustrate how they can be leveraged within the field of nursing practice and inquiry.
Firstly, before delving into the nuances and differentials the these two forms of research and methodologies, a discussion and analysis of the definitions of both qualitative and quantitative research will be performed. As such, qualitative research is ultimately a site exploratory research. As such, is often used to help understand or to find underlying reasons, motivations, or opinions with regard to specific topic. Moreover, it helps to generate insights into the specific issue and help to develop ideas or answers/hypotheses or further quantitative research as such, qualitative research oftentimes forms an introductory level of scope and analysis which further researchers can then focus on specific details or attributes of a given issue as a means of seeking to draw inference. Further, by providing trends and delving deeper into issues, qualitative research performs functions quite unlike quantitative research in that it can construct models of understanding concerning human feelings, emotions, reactions, and thoughts.
Whereas it is true that quantitative research can perform many of these same functions, the underlying nuances and differentials that it is oftentimes able to capture are greatly reduced as compared to qualitative research. Whereas an exhaustive listing of qualitative research methods is not ...
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The use of qualitative and quantitative methods in business research is a common phenomenon. In fact, the above methods are considered as most appropriate for the particular type of research as they are already extensively tested in practice, at the level that these methods are widely used in research studies within various sectors.
Qualitative research methods are described by Thomas (1997, p. 31) as ‘methods for the collection, analysis and interpretation of data on phenomenon that are not easily reduced to numbers, or that might be destroyed by any attempt to do so’. Qualitative methods are used in psychology to elucidate in detail a person’s grasp of his world: the qualities can be seen as objective variables (Smith, 2008).
Research in a particular discipline helps us in number of ways. It gives a picture of the actual facts and the circumstances that can affect the subject and study. Research is a separate discipline in itself and needs proper formulation for conducting it.
The author describes Quantitative Research as ‘the method which investigates the why and how of decision making, not just what, where and when’. It was noted that qualitative research presents data in language form which is gathered from the study area. In qualitative research, it is thought that the researcher can learn the most by participating.
The author states that qualitative and quantitative methods’ versatility can be analysed from the fact that “in recent years specialisations such as medical anthropology and medical sociology have relied on qualitative methods to explore issues relating to health, from the micro-context of the hospital ward to the broader socio cultural context”.
In this methodology, a hypothesis is arrived at and research is conducted to prove or disprove the theory put forth. The main draw back in using the quantitative approach in the research is the inflexibility of the methodology itself. Although it does have a long standing tradition, the quantitative research perspective will not allow me the depth required in seeking out answers to emerging questions in this newly, uncharted area".
Cresswell, the author, introduces these approaches by providing their comparative highlights and salient points. As a practical research guide, Research Design offers “a template for preparing research protocol, a proposal for theses/dissertations and for writing a scholarly research journal articles” (Giddings 2008).
On the other hand, qualitative research methods are methods that permit the research procedures to develop as more observations are collected, and that usually allow the utilization of subjectivity to produce deeper
One of the outstanding differences between qualitative and quantitative research is the fact that it adopts an exploratory nature in a bid to help researchers construct theoretical propositions, while these propositions are tested using quantitative research. Qualitative research is significant in the initial phase of research.
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