How to Choose Best Research Methodology for Your Study

Successful research conduction requires proper planning and execution. While there are multiple reasons and aspects behind a successful research completion, choice of best research methodology is one of the most difficult and confusing decisions. Since your research will dictate the kinds of approaches you follow, it is crucial to choose research methodology to underpin your work and methods you use in order to collect data.

The Importance of Choosing Best Research Methodology

Research methodology is determined before research conduction. Correct choice of research methodology helps in determining the success and overall quality of your research study and its documentation. Furthermore, becoming familiar with the research methods used by an area of study allows you to understand it more effectively.

Which are the Different Types of Research Methodology?

Based on the nature of your research, norms of research area, and practicalities you can choose the best research methodology for your research.

  1. Qualitative research utilizes data that cannot be quantified numerically. In other words, qualitative research focuses on words, descriptions, concepts, beliefs, ideas, and other such intangibles.
  2. Quantitative research utilizes numeric and statistical data. It measures variables and verifies existing theories or hypotheses.
  3. Mixed methods-based research attempts to bring both, qualitative and quantitative research. It uses qualitative research to explore a situation and develop a potential model of understanding, which is also called a conceptual framework, and then uses quantitative methods to test that model empirically.

Broadly, research falls into one of three categories:

  1. Exploratory Research: It provides a better understanding of an issue and potentially develops a theory regarding it. Thus, it tends to adopt qualitative research approach.
  2. Confirmatory Research: It confirms a potential theory or hypothesis by empirical testing. Therefore, it tends to use quantitative research.
  3. Mix of Both: It builds a potential theory or hypothesis and then tests it empirically utilizing the mixed-methods approach.

What are the Steps to Follow While Choosing the Best Research Methodology?

Step 1: Define the goals, objectives, and research question.

Before worrying about the inferences, it is important to draw a path toward conclusive results. Therefore, it is essential to clearly understand what you want to research before deciding upon how to research. Most importantly, determine the variables that need to be studied in order to get an answer to the research question. Sticking to variables will lead you to the final result.

Step 2: Refer pertinent research and effectively used methodology

As there are immeasurable ways of conducting research all may not be meant for your study. Furthermore, determining the best research methodology can be difficult if you aren’t aware of the approach undertaken by other researchers from your field. Therefore, reading pertinent literature in your research area and then evaluating its methodology based on the feasibility and limitations is essential.

Step 3: Structuring the plan and finding resources to conduct research

While the research area may be same, the method of data collation may not be. Some may be time consuming, some may be found on the internet, others might need field study, or might be expensive. Therefore, it is essential to base your decision after giving a thought to these limitations of data collection as well.

Step 4: Write the research methodology in detail and review it

After selecting a particular approach to conduct your research, you must make a note of all activities. It must include the approximate time and resources each step might take. This helps in understanding the approach that your research would take and prepare you for the hurdles on its way to conclusive results.

Reasons to Select a Specific Research Methodology

You should select a qualitative research methodology because:

  • It uses an inductive and subjective approach. Furthermore, it adopts an open and flexible approach.
  • Qualitative research builds theories.
  • Word-based data can be collected via interviews and focus groups.
  • It draws on small sample sizes and uses qualitative data analysis techniques such as content analysis, thematic analysis, etc.

You should select a quantitative research methodology because:

  • It uses a deductive approach and objective approach. In addition, it adopts a closed and highly planned approach.
  • Quantitative research tests theories.
  • Numeric data can be collected via surveys or laboratory instrumentational experiments.
  • It draws on large sample sizes and uses statistical data analysis techniques.

Key Takeaway

While it may seem that the goal of the research is the primary reason to choose the best research methodology, it is essential to consider other factors that influence successful research completion. Remember that the choice of the most appropriate method and its correct execution is what that drives your research.

Source: https://www.enago.com/academy/choose-best-research-methodology/

The following post from our publisher PC TECHNOLOGY CENTER will also be helpful in preparing your manuscript of the article:

– 7 reasons for the negative assessment of reviewers

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