Social Science Research Methods – Research Design Name Institution Instructor Class Abstract Social science research methods include research design, sampling strategy and data compilation instruments. This paper defines and describes the key methodological advance, sampling strategy and data collection instruments chosen for the proposed research while giving the definition of the elements mentioned above…
This paper will seek to issue a description of each of the key elements, which includes the research design, sampling strategy and data collection apparatus and thereafter explore into detail the rationale as to why the stipulated approaches and strategies have been chosen. Research methodology The methodological moves applied in Sociological investigation are roughly grouped under two sub-categories, the qualitative methodologies and quantitative methodologies. The categorization depends on the techniques employed in the investigation and representation of the understanding of event under study. Quantitative, which are normally in use in Sociological investigations, place emphasis on techniques based on direct observation, text analysis, strain on appropriate and objective accuracy greater than generality, make contact with participants and texts analysis. Qualitative move toward social experiences through scientific evidence and often depend on statistical analysis of multiple cases to formulate valid and consistent general assertions. Both methodologies are applicable in analyzing data of a study (Robson, 1997, p.503). The methodological option usually depends on the type observable fact the researcher aims to investigate. Some are portrayed better using qualitative measures while others best use quantitative scales. Also some events under study are better understood by use of either of the two methodologies subjectively. Some complex insights take on an approach which is a fusion of both methodologies whereby it is carried out in levels employing each method uniquely according to the approach that best suits each level. The quantitative are referred to as systematic methods and qualitative as the descriptive methods of social assessment. In this basis, it is upon the researcher to first be aware of the events under study and analyze which methodology to apply. For example, an investigator concerned with statistical generalization crosswise to the total population may possibly administer a survey questionnaire to correspond to sample population. In contrast, an examiner interested in understanding full individual’s social reaction may prefer participant scrutiny. Qualitative methods are in most situations restricted by the mind of the examiner. This is as a result of the subjectivity and bias related to the situation of the events under scrutiny (Sargent, 1994). Some of the most regular methods comprise: Participant observation – it is a technique where the investigator indulges into the culture of the event and participates in shaping its reality at the same time colleting relevant data. Direct observation – here the investigator makes annotations from a secondhand position whereby bias is limited by not participating or not indulging into the cultures but can associate. Unstructured interviewing - this entails candid interaction of respondent and investigator. This kind of interviewing lacks clear guidelines on what is to be inquired. The interviewer directs the conversation into the point of interest that comes up. It is best for broad topic explorations and collecting unparallel data attitude measuring. Case studies – this can be portrayed as a thorough inquiry of a particular occurrence or character. This is the case where numerous approaches are used in the course. Unobtrusive procedures – ...
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On the other hand, qualitative designs concentrate in understanding social phenomena by use of direct observation, analysis of secondary data and direct integration with the participants. Social scientists in general, apply various methods to investigate broad social phenomena.
He further states that the goal of social research is to “explore, describe and explain”. Firebaugh (2008) concurs that survey research is one of the most important areas of measurement applied in social research. The broad area of survey research encompasses any measurement procedures that involve asking questions of respondents.
Both qualitative and quantitative research methodologies are appropriate depending upon the question that is being raised on a particular aspect. If a distinctly measurable commodity within the confines of the presently available measurement parameters’ and statistical instruments’ is being looked into, then a quantitative approach is the most rational option.
The various changes happening in the society – the reorganizing of the labor market, changing educational opportunities and choices, shifting leisure activities and lifestyles – add new pressures on young people who are undergoing transition from childhood to adulthood.
In epidemiology, observation is the most frequent data-collection method used in qualitative research. Face validity is a low-level estimate of validity, appropriate only as a last resort or when no other validity estimates can be obtained, for three reasons (Beaglehole et al 2007).
In any research we can have valid and reliable results, reliable but invalid results, valid and non reliable results and finally invalid and unreliable results.
Reliability means that the results of a study are of quality in measuring relationships between variables, when measures are reliable it means that if another study was undertaken the same results will be obtained, this means that the measure of the study is consistent and repeatable if other studies of the same type are undertaken.There are various reliability measures which include observer reliability, test reliability, parallel reliability and consistent reliability:
The chief attraction of a comparative methodology is found in the fact that it allows its user to replicate and approximate the controlled conditions of laboratory experiments that are normally deployed and used in the natural and medical sciences. However comparative methodology has several limitations when deployed in understanding the social science phenomena.
The need to better understand and improve one’s practice is based on the need to transition from novice to expert (Neary, 2000).
Various studies have been carried out in order to evaluate motivations involved in student decisions to work in these specific specialties.