What are the 10 Characteristics of research: Quantitative and Qualitative Research?

What are the 10 Characteristics of research: Quantitative and Qualitative Research

American sociologist Earl Robert Babbie states,

“Research is a systematic inquiry to describe, explain, predict and control the observed phenomenon.”

Research refers to a careful consideration of study related to a specific problem or concern applying scientific methods. The word ‘research’ originates from the French word “recerchier” which means to ‘search again.’ Research can be defined as,

“a scientific approach to answering a research question, solving a research problem, or generating new knowledge through a systematic and orderly collection, organisation, and analysis of data to make research findings useful in decision-making.” 

Characteristics of Quantitative Research

1. Answers of the research are in a numerical form. 

2. The result is mostly in the form of graphs, statistical data, tables, and percentages, and the like. 

3. Its main aim is to apply mathematical and statistical models to establish an understanding of the problem of research.

4. The outcome of quantitative research is analysed with the help of statistics to get unbiased results.

5. The results of quantitative research can be generalised.

6. It is conducted on a large population size to ensure reliability. 

7. It uses structural research methods like questionnaires, polls, and surveys.

8. Participants of the research face close-ended questions and hence, the research outcome is highly reliable. 

9. The outcome of quantitative research can be used multiple times.

10. The questions used are mostly close-ended. 

Characteristics of Qualitative Research

1. Research usually occurs in natural and dynamic settings.

2. Various kinds of data, including texts, images, interview answers, and observations are analysed.

3. It interprets concepts that cannot be measured in numbers.

4. Its main aim is to understand human experiences, attitudes, thoughts, and behaviors.  

5. It addresses specific populations or locations.

6. It emphasises on the opinion of the study participants.

7. It can bring a new dimension to studies.

8. It requires a smaller sample size compared to other research types.

9. It allows one to understand the trends and phenomena of the outside world. 

10. It is a form of empirical research that aims at collecting and interpreting data that cannot be expressed in numbers.

Clifford Woody opines,

“Research comprises defining and redefining problems, formulating hypothesis or suggested solutions, Collecting, Organizing and Evaluating data, Making deductions and reaching Conclusions to determine they fit the formulating hypothesis.”

Pertaining to research, Theodorson and Theodorson (1969) states,

“it refers to any honest attempt to study a problem systematically or to add to man’s knowledge of a problem.”

According to Gratton & Jones, 2009,

“Research is a systematic process of discovery and advancement of human knowledge.”

UGC NET Paper 1

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