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Research Methodology

Essay by   •  December 28, 2011  •  Essay  •  1,154 Words (5 Pages)  •  1,791 Views

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Research Methodology

Research is a logical and systematic search for information on a topic. The information gained in any research can aid many millions of people. The integrity of a researcher as well as the research being done is a necessity on all levels. When research is conducted and results or people have been compromised, then the results are not valid or reliable. A generalized set of satndards is the main way of ensuring validity and reliabiltiy. Research is very important to everyone. With the results of research, people can be treated for conditions that may have goe untreated otherwise. Research methodolgy is necessary for the researcher to establish the design in which the research will be conducted.

Science of Psychology

Psychology is a biological science. Psychology involves the behavior and minds of animals and human beings. Psychology is derived from two Greek words; psyche: 'soul' and logos which means to talk (Z. A., 2011). Psychology literally means, "To talk about soul". Psychology is the youngest of the sciences and is still in a process of development. The Science of Psychlogy has a main goal. The main goal is to discover the laws of human nature. In layman's terms this breaks down to be the ability to understand, predict, control and change the behaviour, whenever required (Z.A., 2011). Psychology is both applied and academic. Applied psychology is therapy while academic is research.

Scientific Method

The Scientific Method is a concept refering to the means in which questions are asked as well as the logic and methods used to gain answeres (Shaughnessy, Zechmeister, & Zechmeister, 2009). Scientific method has two important characteristics; 1) reliance on the empirical approach 2) scientists with a skeptical attitude adopts explanations of behaviour and mental processes. The empirical approach is the most important characteristic for the scientific method since it allows direct observation and experimentation. Scientific method has been the basis for investigation for psychology for over one hundred years. Scientific method has four goals: description, prediction, explanation, and application (Shaughnessy, Zechmeister, & Zechmeister, 2009).

Qualitative Data

Qualitative Data is data derived from observations. Using qualitative data requires a thorough understanding of the data set. The data must also be quality data in order for the analysis to be valid. Qualitative data is extremely diverse. Qualitative data contains any information gathered that is not numerical. Types of qualitative data:

* In-Depth Interviews - includes individual interviews and group interviews. Data can be recorded in many different ways such as stenography, audio recording, video recording, or written notes.

* Direct Observation - Direct observation is very broad and can include field research and any type of observable behavior study.

* Written Documents - Written documents normally refers to existing documentation.

* Ethnography - Ethnography emphasis is on studying the entire culture.

* Phenomenology - Studies how the world appears to others.

* Field Research - researchers go into the field to observe the participants.

* Grounded Theory - Developed by Glaser and Strauss in the 1960's. (Trochim, 2006)

There are numerous other types of qualitative data. The methods of collecting this type of data are only inhibited by the imagination of the researcher. This type of research deligates that credibility be maintained in order for the results to be accepted. Qualitative data must also have transferability, dependability, and confirmability in order to be accepted.

Quantitative Data

Quantitative Data is any data that can be counted or expressed numerically. Quantitative Data is often collected in experiments. Quantitative Data can be shown by use of graphs, histograms, tables, and charts. Quantitative Data can be contrasted with qualitative data, which involves describing things in terms of categorizations or qualities. Quantitative data has many advantages, to mention a few; specific, easily

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