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Qualitative vs. Quantitative - Research Paper Example

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Qualitative vs. Quantitative Research Instructor Date Qualitative vs. Quantitative research In research there exists two main approaches that can be applied effectively to come up with results and they include the quantitative and the qualitative approaches…
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Qualitative vs. Quantitative Research
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"Qualitative vs. Quantitative"

Qualitative research on the other hand is the is the process of describing as well as explaining the complex phenomena with the main aim of answering complex questions that arise from the phenomena being researched as well as aiming to gather an in depth information that concerns or explains human behavior and giving insights in to why such behavior is present or exhibited. Mixed method research is mainly used when the qualitative and the quantitative methods can give a better understanding of the questions in the research. There are various similarities and differences between the quantitative and the qualitative approaches of research as outlined below (Chan & Thong, 2009). Both approaches are similar in that both of them are research which involves the analysis of the information that has been collected that is ultimately aimed at improving on the existing knowledge base or answering one or more questions concerning a certain theory or a phenomenon. Both approaches involve the incorporation of a sample size that is used to represent the general population and that the results that are obtained from the sample population are a reflection of the general population (Cormack, 1991). The differences between the two approaches are varied in that in quantitative research the variables that are used can be measured and observed. These variables are recorded in numbers thus the statistics can be used to establish relationships between various variables in the research. Qualitative research on the other hand uses words to describe to explain the various observations and insights thus researchers usually use interpretive narrative to clarify the phenomena that is being studied. The process of thinking in these two approaches is different in that quantitative research usually relies on deductive reasoning which entails the formation of various conclusions basing on the data that was previously collected thus it can be concluded that the thinking procedures are well defined in this type of reasoning. In qualitative research inductive reasoning is applied where researchers try to develop various truths from the data they have collected. This implies that the qualitative research tries to induce an insight from the information at hand. The information in inductive reasoning is free flowing than in deductive reasoning (Leedy & Ormrod, 2010). The numbers of participants that are involved in the sample in both approaches vary considerably. Quantitative studies uses a larger sample in that the more the participants in this approach the higher the chances that those who are included in the sample are the representative of the larger population thus the more accurate the findings are. In qualitative research on the other hand does not require a larger sample population because it does not incorporate statistical analysis and the results are usually not generalized. In quantitative research the researcher is required to be independent of the process in that he or she should do nothing that might influence the outcome of the research. Qualitative requires that the researcher should interact with the participants in various ways like observing the participants, or interviewing them (Bockmon & Rieman, 1987). In conclusion, these two approaches are very important in research since it helps in answering various questions that arise concerning a particular phenomenon or in the formulation of Read More
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