Research design is a framework for research almost in any science: beginning from social science and ending with exact ones. The design, methods, and techniques are chosen by the researcher before the conducting of the survey.
Shortly, it is a plan the answering the questions asked by your research. Before asking them, a researcher has to check if all the conditions of the research are met:
- The relevance of the study
- Clear statement
- Chosen methodology and techniques
- The chosen type of research
- Analysis measurements
- Roadmap of the research
When meeting the above-mentioned checklist, you can go further and choose the methods of your research. Here are the basic methods of research design:
#1 — Observation
Observation is the qualitative research method when the researcher observes the subjects in their natural environment. The main goal of this method is to gain more insight as possible, capture the deviations of the subjects and the errors in behavior.
Widely used in social sciences, where the researcher needs honest data. Also, this method is chosen when the survey has to collect sensitive data, answer the how's of the survey, and the formulation of specific questions on the research is needed.
#2 — Surveys
This method is also a quantitative one, as a researcher collects data (answers) from a pool of respondents by asking particular questions. Often used in market research before launching a product to know the cons and pros of the competitors to improve the product.
Consists of such steps as recruitment, data collecting, and analysis of the data.
#3 — Interviews
Interviews are also a quantitative method when a researcher asks open-ended questions to communicate with the respondents and collect the data on the subject of the research.
A distinctive feature of the interviews is that they help by the expert in the field of the subjects' matter and the focus groups of the interviewees have distinctive features of the topic key characteristics. Used mostly in social science.
#4 — Focus Groups
Attitudes and behavior are what seek the researchers who use focus groups as a research design methodology. With descriptive data, researchers can better explain the key points of the survey. A focus group is a preselected group of people (from 5 to 10) that is focused on the topic the most, and they give the most valuable data on the topic.
Mostly used in health care and media business.
#5 — Experiments
This approach is systematic and scientific when the researcher manipulates some variables to notice a change. One variable is manipulated to control the other. The experimental method is used inexact science, medicine, and many more spheres.
#6 — Archival Study
The archival study method covers the work with papers and the existing materials on the topic. This method often includes the study of historical papers, archives.
Archival method os applied in various spheres from media to academic researches made by scholars. Also, the method can be used while analyzing digital data and graphic design.
#7 — Mixed-Method
The quantitative and qualitative method which combines the above-mentioned methods of research design. Usually, the method consists of such steps as:
- Collecting the data
- Analyzing it within the scope of the variables
- Creating theories based on the analyzed data
Mixed method study started in the health care system, but now is getting more acknowledgment in social studies a well.
Likely to Remember
Depending on the goal of your research you need to choose a method, and еру results also depend on the chosen method of the research. So, before starting this journey, check with our list of the point to fulfill and choose a method considering your sphere, the goal of the research, the data and instruments you already have, and the relevance of the focus group.