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Research Designs

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Oskar Blakstad 1.8M reads
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Different Research DesignsThe design is the structure of any scientific work. It gives direction and systematizes the research. Different types of research designs have different advantages and disadvantages.

The method you choose will affect your results and how you conclude the findings. Most scientists are interested in getting reliable observations that can help the understanding of a phenomenon.

There are two main approaches to a research problem :

  • Quantitative Research
  • Qualitative Research

What are the difference between Qualitative and Quantitative Research ?

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Different Research Methods

There are various designs which are used in research, all with specific advantages and disadvantages. Which one the scientist uses, depends on the aims of the study and the nature of the phenomenon:

Descriptive Designs

Aim: Observe and Describe

  • Descriptive Research
  • Case Study
  • Naturalistic Observation
  • Survey , also see our Survey Guide

Correlational Studies

Aim: Predict

  • Case Control Study
  • Observational Study
  • Cohort Study
  • Longitudinal Study
  • Cross Sectional Study
  • Correlational Studies in general

Semi-Experimental Designs

Aim: Determine Causes

  • Field Experiment
  • Quasi-Experimental Design
  • Twin Studies

Experimental Designs

Aim: Determine Causes

  • True Experimental Design
  • Double-Blind Experiment

Reviewing Other Research

Aim: Explain

  • Literature Review
  • Meta-analysis
  • Systematic Reviews

Test Study Before Conducting a Full-Scale Study

Aim: Does the Design Work?

  • Pilot Study

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Typical Experimental Designs

Simple Experimental Techniques

  • Pretest-Posttest Design
  • Control Group
  • Randomization
  • Randomized Controlled Trials
  • Between Subjects Design
  • Within Subject Design

Complex Experimental Designs

  • Factorial Design
  • Solomon Four-Group Design
  • Repeated Measures Design
  • Counterbalanced Measures Design
  • Matched Subjects Design
  • Bayesian Probability

Which Method to Choose?

What design you choose depends on different factors.

  • What information do you want? The aims of the study.
  • The nature of the phenomenon – Is it feasible to collect the data, and if so, would it be valid/reliable ?
  • How reliable should the information be?
  • Is it ethical to conduct the study?
  • The cost of the design
  • Is there little or much current scientific theory and literature on the topic?

Survey Guide

The full guide – How to create a Survey / Questionnaire

Introduction

  • Research and Surveys
  • Advantages and Disadvantages of Surveys
  • Survey Design
  • Methods of Survey Sampling

Planning a Survey

  • Planning a Survey
  • Defining Survey Goals

Questions and Answers

  • Constructing Survey Questions
  • Questionnaire Layout
  • Types of Survey Questions
  • Survey Response Scales
  • Survey Response Formats

Types of Surveys

  • Selecting the Survey Method
  • Types of Survey
  • Paper-and-pencil Survey
  • Personal Interview Survey
  • Telephone Survey
  • Online Surveys
  • Preparing an Online Survey
  • Web Survey Tools
  • Focus Groups – Pros and Cons
  • Panel Study

Conducting the Survey

  • Pilot Survey
  • How to Conduct a Survey
  • Increasing Survey Response Rates

After the Survey

  • Analysis and Handling Survey Data
  • Conclusion of a Survey
  • Presenting Survey Results

Resources

  • Questionnaire Example
  • Questionnaire Checklist

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Further Reading

  • “Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches” by John W. Creswell
  • “Essentials of Research Design and Methodology” by Geoffrey R Marczyk

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Check out our quiz-page with tests about:

  • Psychology 101
  • Science
  • Flags and Countries
  • Capitals and Countries

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Back to Overview

“Research Design”
 

 
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“Pilot Study”

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Full reference: 

Oskar Blakstad (Jun 17, 2008). Research Designs. Retrieved Aug 15, 2018 from Explorable.com: https://explorable.com/research-designs

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You Are Allowed To Copy The Text

The text in this article is licensed under the Creative Commons-License Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) .

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That is it. You don’t need our permission to copy the article; just include a link/reference back to this page. You can use it freely (with some kind of link), and we’re also okay with people reprinting in publications like books, blogs, newsletters, course-material, papers, wikipedia and presentations (with clear attribution).

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Related articles

  • 1 Quantitative and Qualitative Research
  • 2 Case Study
  • 3 Literature Review
  • 4 Quantitative Research Design
  • 5 Qualitative Research Design

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This article is a part of the guide:

Discover 30 more articles on this topic

Don’t miss these related articles:
  • 1 Quantitative and Qualitative Research
  • 2 Case Study
  • 3 Literature Review
  • 4 Quantitative Research Design
  • 5 Qualitative Research Design

Browse Full Outline

  • 1 Research Designs
  • 2 Basics

    • 2.1 Pilot Study
    • 2.2 Quantitative Research Design
    • 2.3 Qualitative Research Design
    • 2.4 Quantitative and Qualitative Research
  • 3 Descriptive Research

    • 3.1 Case Study
    • 3.2 Naturalistic Observation
    • 3.3 Survey Research Design
    • 3.4 Observational Study
  • 4 Covariance

    • 4.1 Case-Control Study
    • 4.2 Cohort Study
    • 4.3 Longitudinal Study
    • 4.4 Cross Sectional Study
    • 4.5 Correlational Study
  • 5 Semi-Experimental

    • 5.1 Field Experiments
    • 5.2 Quasi-Experimental Design
    • 5.3 Identical Twins Study
  • 6 Experimental

    • 6.1 Experimental Design
    • 6.2 True Experimental Design
    • 6.3 Double Blind Experiment
    • 6.4 Factorial Design
  • 7 Review

    • 7.1 Literature Review
    • 7.2 Systematic Reviews
    • 7.3 Meta Analysis

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