Research methods

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Research methods

First How to Choose the most Appropriate Design?

Selecting the correct type from the different research methods can be a little daunting, at first. There are so many factors to take into account and evaluate.

The research question, ethics, budget and time are all major considerations in any design.

This is before looking at the statistics required, and studying the preferred methods for the individual scientific discipline.

Every experimental design must make compromises and generalizations, so the researcher must try to minimize these, whilst remaining realistic.

For ‘pure’ sciences, such as chemistry or astrophysics, experiments are quite easy to define and will, usually, be strictly quantitative.

For biology, psychology and social sciences, there can be a huge variety of methods to choose from, and a researcher will have to justify their choice. Whilst slightly arbitrary, the best way to look at the various methods is in terms of ‘strength’.

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