Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of one or two particular research methods (e.g. ethnography; narrative enquiry; surveys; questionnaires; interviews). Refer to three or four relevant research articles in an area you may be interested in investigating and consider the strengths and weaknesses of the methods used in each context…
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Social science survey research is significant as it seeks to measure previous and current behavior, as well as future behavior (Marelli, 2004). As can be seen from political survey polls, these polls evaluate public opinion likely determining how people would vote in upcoming elections. The surveys also in public health would assess health behavior including eating trends, exercise trends, smoking behavior, wearing of seatbelts, frequency of routine exams, and other related relevant health behavior (Marelli, 2004). These studies seek predictions and trends in human behavior and how such behavior can be changed. In effect, individuals without health insurance can be surveyed using questions on how willing they are to pay health insurance. The surveys can also be applied in determining if individuals would buy more fresh vegetables if these were cheaper (Hatch, 2009). Survey subjects likely covered for survey research include those who can be accurately evaluated through subject response (Hoppe, 1998). Physical measures can sometimes be accurately assessed if the subjects have standard resources. In other words, height, weight, blood sugar, nutrition, and blood pressure can easily be measured where the subjects apply standard measures. Medication use can also be evaluated based on an individual’s prescription information. Clinical results, however, are sometimes not being measured during the survey research especially as they need health care professionals to carry out the process (Mathiyazhagan and Nandan, 2010). Health care application would fit well for surveys since the responses can be taken from the subjects, insurance records, or the written records. Disease incidence and prevalence are often more complicated to measure as they call for accurate means of diagnosing (Hatch, 2009). Mental health diseases are considered exempted because they are often diagnosed using survey scored within or outside the mental health system. Validity The validity of survey research is evaluated by measures similar to clinical research studies (Hatch, 2009). The covered population must still be specifically defined and a sample population extracted. The most relevant source of bias in survey research is on sampling. As soon as the target population is established, random or representative samples have to be chosen and those chosen must then be asked to participate in the study (Glasow, 2005). For some populations, the samples are easy to define and extract. Samples in clinical settings can be randomly chosen from the medical records. Inclusion and exclusion criteria, including condition, age, gender, treatment can then be compiled before the sampling process is initiated (Hatch, 2009). Patients with existing relations with the researcher would likely entertain calls or invitations to participate. The larger population however would be more difficult to locate and include in the sample population. Granting that the target is a population of adults in a city in the eastern coast of the United States, the first task would be to identify all the adults in the area. The sources would also have to be laid out. Telephone listings are considered one of the sources of names, however not all adults have listed numbers, and others use cell phones, and the rest, do not even have phones (Hatch, 2009). In some instances, other
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