Discuss the differences between the three major approaches surrounding collection and analysis of data i,e., quantitative, qualitative, and mixed methods. As well as, describe the design of scientific inquiry that may go with each method i.e., survey, narrative, phenomenological, ethnographic, grounded theory, or case study and why it would be selected. Then address which method and design you think you would prefer to use to conduct research and why.
Requires 250-300 words each forum.
For this week’s forum post, We discuss the three major approaches surrounding collection and analysis of data. The first of the three approaches are quantitative. Quantitative, represents the method of utilizing numeric data and statistics in communicating the results. The second of the three approaches are qualitative. Qualitative represents the method of gathering data in the form of words and descriptions, such as interviews and focus groups, to communicate the results. The third, and final approach surrounding collection and analysis of data is mixed methods. Mixed methods incorporate both of what the quantitative and qualitative approach focus on. Using both numeric data and personal communication (Todd, Nerlich, McKeown, Clarke, p.2,3)
The quantitative method, involves numeric data and statistics to communicate findings. It emphasizes data, measured objectively, because it cannot be disputed. Polls, questionnaires, and surveys are three methods used in the collection of statistical, mathematical, or numerical analysis of data. The primary purpose of quantitative research is to explain a particular event. By gathering a specific type of data, and generalizing it across an area small or wide. The goal, is to determine the relationships between variables, in that given area. Typically, this type of research is used to create graphs and tables of raw data. (Todd, Nerlich, McKeown, Clarke, p.2,3). This method would involve survey and ethnographic, because both are products of statistical analysis.
The qualitative method, involves gathering data in the form of words and descriptions. It emphasizes to understand the social reality of a given group and cultures as nearly as possible as its participants feel it or live it. The study is conducted in the person or groups natural setting. The goal of the qualitative approach is to understand the “why” behind a particular phenomenon, or behavior, acts the way it does. (Saul McLeon, p.1,2)
This method would involve narrative and case study, because both of those studies involve personal data. Data that is received in the form of words.
The mixed method, combines both of the approaches, that the quantitative and qualitative method focus on. It emphasizes the collection, analysis, and integrating quantitative and qualitative research. The issue with both qualitative and quantitative research, is that there are weaknesses to only using one method at a time. Mixing the methods allows for an offshoot of the weakness. This method allows for the researcher to gain in breadth and depth of understand and corroboration. (CIRT, p.1) This method would include Phenomenological, grounded theory, and all of the other methods included since it is a “mixed” method, because this method is “mixed” technically, all other method results could be included in mixed mythology research methods.