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Quantitative Research Methods
UU-DOC-801 Quantitative Research Methods
Lecturer’s Notes: Introduction to Research
What is research?
Research could be defined as a systematic process of inquiry that aims to discover, unveil,
interpret, and revise the truth and facts (Alhadeff-Jones, 2013).
A research investigation produces and develops a greater knowledge of facts, actions, behaviors,
theories, and laws.
The term research also refers to a collection of information about a particular topic, and is
usually related with science and the scientific method. Different types of research can be
classified according to the:
1) Purpose of the research. The reason why it was conducted
2) Process of the research. The way in which the data were collected & analyzed
Research process
Any research process which will be conducted for any research topic requires/follows specific
stages therefore it is important to state that research process is characterized by a series of
structural procedures. These stages may vary according to the requirements of a particular
research topic or field however the below image summarizes the main steps that are considered
while entering in a research process for any research project within any area of concentration
(i.e. Education, Business etc):
Quantitative Research Methods
UU-DOC-801 Quantitative Research Methods
The term methodology refers to the principles of methods, procedures, rules that the researcher
uses to analyse, evaluate and interpret the selected data and information.
The choice of a methodology depends on the research objectives, discipline and requirements
of the particular research topic. The aim of the research method is to produce new knowledge.
A research method may take four of the following forms (Gray, 2013):
1. Exploratory research: is used to enable the investigation of a clearly identifiable problem which
was not studied in the past
2. Descriptive research: is used to describe characteristics of a population or phenomenon being
3. Constructive research: is used to identify and develop solutions to a clearly identifiable problem
4. Empirical research: is used to test the feasibility of a solution with the empirical data
However, a research methodology is BASED on one of the three following RESEARCH
1. Quantitative research: Quantitative research is an approach for testing objective theories by
examining the relationship (if there is any) among variables. These variables in turn, can be
measured or quantified based on different quantitative research tools (e.g questionnaire), so that
numbered data can be analyzed using statistical procedures (e.g regression analysis). Since this
research approach aims to examine any relationship that exists among two or more variables it
is also known as correlational design of research (Alexander Di Pofi, 2002).
2. Qualitative: Qualitative research is an approach that aims to explore or investigate the human
interaction in regards to a social or human problem or issue that is being observed. This approach
collects, analyzes and interprets data in order to provide further understanding and meaning of
what people do or say (Alexander Di Pofi, 2002).
3. Mixed Methods Research (Triangulation): In a mixed research methodology, the researcher
combines different qualitative and quantitative research data. While using a mixed method
research, the researcher aims to practice triangulation by checking the results from any relevant
angle. In a triangulation, the researcher permits the features’ identification of a phenomenon
more precisely by approaching it from different critical facts using different methods and
techniques like the combination of interviews and questionnaire surveys (Morse, 1991).
Reference page
Quantitative Research Methods
UU-DOC-801 Quantitative Research Methods
Alhadeff-Jones, M. (2013). Complexity, methodology and method: Crafting a critical process
of research. Complicity, 10(1/2), 19-44.
Alexander Di Pofi, J. (2002). Organizational diagnostics: integrating qualitative and quantitative
methodology. Journal of organizational change management, 15(2), 156-168.
Morse, J. M. (1991). Approaches to qualitative-quantitative methodological
triangulation. Nursing research, 40(2), 120-123.
Gray, D. E. (2013). Doing research in the real world. Sage.

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