What is Research Design?
Research design refers to the overall plan or strategy that guides the process of conducting a research study. It outlines the methods and procedures that will be used to collect, analyze, and interpret data to answer research questions or test hypotheses. Research design is a crucial aspect of any scientific investigation as it provides a framework for ensuring the validity, reliability, and generalizability of the study’s findings.
Table of Content
- 1 What is Research Design?
- 2 Types of Research Design
- 2.1 Exploratory Research Design
- 2.2 Case Study and Observation
- 2.3 Interview and Group Discussion (GD)
- 2.4 Focus Groups
- 2.5 Importance of Exploratory Research
- 2.6 Conclusive Research Design
Types of Research Design
Let us now study about these research design.
Exploratory Research Design
Researchers use explanatory research design to further expand, explore and explain a researcher’s ideas and theories. Exploratory research design is used for describing or researching on topics thathave not been taken up for research earlier.
In other words, it can be said that exploratory research design helps in explaining the topics that have not been explored earlier. Exploratory research is described as research that is utilised to examine a problem that is not well established. It is done to better understand the problem at hand, but it will not give full results.
In such a study, the researcher starts with a general idea and then uses the research as a way to find out the issues, which can be focused on in future research. An important factor here is that the researcher should be willing to change his or her direction in terms of new data disclosure or understanding. Such research is usually done when the problem is in the early stages. It is often referred to as a basic study method or translation research as it is used to answer questions such as what, why, and how.
Secondary Data Research
When research is carried out using data that has been gathered and recorded previously by any person for any research purpose or study other than the one under consideration, it is called as secondary data research. Secondary data is usually analysed in a quantitative manner.
Usually, qualitative research is a part of primary research. In qualitative research, the researcher gathers data using less structured research instruments and a combination of open and close-ended questions. Quite often, the results of qualitative research are based on smaller sample sizes and are usually do not represent the entire population.
Case Study and Observation
Case study: An Illustration of Observation Research regarding watching users of digital camera’s This case study is based on a research project that investigates the accuracy of the case Controls for standard digital cameras. Studies have shown that accurate use is actually supported by previous experience – either with the same products or with the features and functions of the same product. So the information on how to use the products is passed on by the users from one product to another.
However, such information transfer is not always appropriate. For example, remember the difference between using gas and electric controls. The term accurate use has been widely used in connection with various products and systems but it has not been adequately explained. With extensive literature reviews, it was he concluded that it is a feeling of some kind of mind-boggling psychological process that uses stored experience information (information obtained from previous experiences).
The use of accurate products involves the use of information obtained from other products or there too. The test was selected as it has a combination of features, some of which are is different from this model and some of them should be familiar to other users as they have is employed on other cameras, other digital cameras, and other products. User Levels Expertise is categorised asa professional, medium, new, and naïve with digital cameras, and five people were selected for each level of expertise.
None of the participants had it encountered a camera used in the experiments before the start of the study. Participants were asked to complete two tasks, each of which had- the number of jobs, and that among them involves the use of many jobs as well Camera features.
Operation: Use the camera to take an image in autofocus mode using the zoom function. Delete your photo. Search on pictures stored on the camera to get the photo set. Zoom in to the details get bigger. Participants were asked to try their own activities, such as using the manual can hide the use of their previous experience. As well as video recording use of camera participants, the reviewer asks participants to think as loudly as they do he does jobs.
The time is taken by each participant to complete all tasks and activities of the object, was recorded, as well as factors such as fair, inappropriate, and inappropriate use of camera features, and the correct usage number for each feature. In coding for video data, the correct use is considered to be the immediate use of the external feature consultation with awareness, with little or no speech at all. Immediately after the completion of the tasks, a list of technical orientation questions participants was terminated and formal interviews were conducted.
Technology practice questions and interviews are designed to determine whether or not past transferable experience between situations. For example, participants were asked to use regular consumer electronics and how often products are, and how effective the products are. The results showed that the most common features were used intuitively more often. For example, the power button indicates a high level of familiarity and a high percentage of intuitive use.
The navigation menu function also showed a high percentage of accurate use and a high level of familiarity. DISP function, which controls display on the LCD screen, showed a very low and low level of familiarity percentage of accurate usage. Only professionals who have ever used the same digital cameras have taken them this function easily. It has been found that previous information on camera features or functions is valid participants used those features correctly, and unusual features or functions had to be found, which was time-consuming and laborious.
From the results, it is possible it was suggested that pre-exposure to products using the same features as helping participants to complete tasks very quickly and accurately. Camera Forwarding features from other digital products, so even the professional users of digital cameras have limited knowledge and other digital products have completed tasks slowly and effortlessly fully equipped with novice. Digital cameras with features hired on camera for using other products.
These findings suggest that past transferable information is transferred between products, too perhaps also between conditions. Participants with past experience with various features indicate the rapid and accurate use of these features, so it should be so it is possible to conclude that the previous knowledge contributed to that. Therefore, including standard features and controls on the product, in a way that is easy to follow and accurate in line with the user’s expectations based on his previous experience, should support the correct use of the product.
Interview and Group Discussion (GD)
Group discussion includes assembling people from the same experiences and interests. It is a method of qualitative research where the questions are asked for their opinions, attitudes, beliefs, opinions, or opinions. In focus groups, participants are free to talk to other group members; unlike other encouraging research methods interviews with other stakeholders. It usually involves a group interviewing when a small group usually has 8 to 12 people.
he president (asking questions) in a well-organised discussion of various interesting topics. Group and group formation the conversation should be carefully planned so that create a non-threatening environment, therefore that participants feel free to speak freely again give honest opinions. As participants they were diligently encouraged not to expose themselves to your ideas, but also respond to something else members and questions asked by the leader, focus groups offer depth, nuance, and variation in conversation that would not be is obtained by research.
More so, as FGDs are also organised directed, but also revealing, he can withdraw many details in a short time. Therefore, FGDs are a great way to collect in-depth information about the community’s thoughts and ideas on the topic. Course chat is usually organised in advance and many presidents rely on to explain, or guide, to ensure that all topics of interest is included.
Important Features of GDs and Interviews
- Includes scheduled talk with a select group of people to benefit from details of their views as well title experience especially to get several ideas on the same topic
- It helps to gain understanding from people a shared understanding of everyday life and the way people live influenced by others in a group setting
- The role of the president too remarkable, as well as good team standards leadership, and interpersonal skills exist; it is necessary to balance the group successfully
Advantages and Disadvantages of using FGDs
They are as follows:
- Free and open communication between respondents results from a generation of new ideas that can be very helpful Decision making.
- The focus group does not sit together. The president may bring many changes to make it easier to discuss in time group discussion.
- This dynamism allows for better results according to data obtained by the focus group.
- Speeches other than those in an oral form such as physical activity and regenerative activities can provide the researcher with useful information.
The disadvantages of using a focus group conversation are as follows:
- Although the president can control the conversation, the level of this ability to control the conversation depending on his experience. An inexperienced president may face problems in controlling other participants trying to control the group.
- Respondents may be reluctant to share some empathy ideas and public concerns.
- Due to the small sample size and human heterogeneity, findings may not be sufficient to make estimates or a composite image of the situation.
- FGD could be an influential input set that responds to express and act naturally. Findings it can be really far away.
Do’s and Don’ts
- Be an inexperienced or inexperienced listener watching.
- Wear clothes that fit what they are saying wear.
- Act as participants with you according to.
- See honest, since if you didn’t understand things, even if you do.
- Organise all your questions. facilitate a focus group that happens. It should almost certainly work itself if you already have it in line.
- Start with open-ended questions.
- The first question should be the general one to make people warm above, state participants’ ideas on the topic.
- If you hear something you have never heard before, ask someone who tells you more about it.
- If someone shares a view, ask others at group whether they share an opinion.
- In the beginning, explain that you will be a secret, that you invite them to keep it a secret, and what will happen to it the information they give you.
- If there is going to be a report, explain it will depend on whom and how it will be used.
- Go around the room and get each person to answer you. The first question is to pull everyone inside.
- Continue to praise and thank people for their contributions.
- Make them feel their contribution is welcome too it’s worth it.
- Be sensitive to the problems they raise, even if you consider that some use the focus group as a small whinge time.
- Always ask questions of certain people, to draw people in the middle.
- Feel free to change the order of questions if you have someone brings up something related to the latest question.
What not to do
- Do not ask leading questions (which may suggest they want some answer).
- Do not ask leading questions (which may suggest they want some answer).
- Do not ask double-ended questions. People can’t answer two questions at once.
- Don’t tell people they are wrong. Do not fix them.
- Do not express any opinion.
- In general, try not to put people down. Accept their offering whatever it is.
- If someone looks really shy, don’t do it press them to speak.
- If someone looks really shy, don’t do it press them to speak.
- The purpose is to explain the unknown, vague and ambiguous.
This method of qualitative research is often utilised in product marketing research, but for a social approach. A group of people – usually 6 to 12 members- are assembled in a place to join in a conducted discussion of the subject. Suppose you are launching a research project on the popularity of Apple products. Maybe you want to have in-depth interviews with Apple consumers, but before you do that, you want to feel what kind of questions and topics will work in the interview, and see if consumers can come up with topics you don’t like ‘I thought to include in your questionnaire.
A focus group can be an excellent idea for you to talk easily to users about whatever they wish and avoid about the business outcomes, and how they utilise those outcomes in their careers. Participants in the focus group were selected according to their suitability and relationship to the topic under study.
They are seldom selected using rigorous, sampling methods, which means they do not statistically represent any meaningful society. Instead, participants are selected orally, in advertising, or in a snowball sample, depending on the type of person and the symptoms the researcher wants to include.
Benefits of Focus Groups
There are many benefits of focus groups:
- As a social-focused research method, it captures real-world health data.
- It is flexible.
- It has a high surface strength, which means it measures what it intends to measure.
- Produces instant results.
- It costs less to do.
Disadvantages of Focus Groups
- The researcher has less control over the session than he does in certain interviews.
- Moderators need certain skills.
- Differences between groups can be problematic.
- Groups can often be difficult to meet.
- The discussion should take place in a conducive environment.
Basic Steps in Conducting a Focus Group
Several primary steps should be included while attending a focus group, from preparation to data interpretation.
Planning a Focus Group(F-G)
Recognise the Principal Goal
- Carefully develop your focus group questions. Focus the group should last 1 to 1/2 hours, which is normally sufficient time to write 5 or 6 proposals.
- Invite participants to ask for the conference. Focus groups normally consist of six to 12 members by the identical features. Choose participants who may be involved in discussions and who do not know each other.
- Send a follow-up invitation with the proposed agenda, questions for discussion, and time/place details.
- Schedule a time that suits most people. Set up a focus group that will take between 1 and 1 1/2 hours. Mealtime or dinner is usually a good time for people, and if you serve food, they are more likely to be present.
- Find a nice place, like a conference room, with good air and light. Arrange a room so that all members can see each other. Provide name tags and drinks. If your focus group is during the day or at mealtime, make sure you provide food.
- Establish specific participant rules that help encourage participation and keep the session running smoothly. For example- 1. Stay focused on the topic/question, 2. Keep the intensity of the discussion going on, and 3. Find the closure for each question.
- Create a focus group agenda. Consider the following: Approval, agenda review, review of the purpose of the meeting, review of basic rules, introductions, questions and answers, and wrap up.
- Do not rely on your memory for information shared in the focus group. Set up a recording session with an audio or video recorder. If this is not possible, add a coordinator who writes good notes.
- Introduce yourself to your facilitator if you have one.
- State your need and reason for recording the focus group discussion.
- Create an agenda.
- Carefully write each question in the group. Before the group discussion, let everyone take a few minutes to carefully write down their answers or answers. Next, prepare a discussion of the answers to each question, one at a time.
- After discussing each question, return a brief summary of what you just heard. If you have someone taking notes/coordinators, they can do this.
- Be sure to also participate within the group. If a few people control the conversation, call others. Also, think of the way the table is round when you go to one side around the table, giving each person a chance to answer a question.
Close the session by thanking the participants and telling them that they will receive a copy of the report made as a result of the discussion.
Immediately After Session
- Make sure your audio or video recordings are always active (if only one is used).
- Execute any supplementary data on your scribbled records that you require.
- Write down some considerations you executed while the session goes on, before-mentioned the type of cooperation in the gathering, any wonders of the session, where and when the gathering was taken, etc.
For example, visualise a circumstance where the buyer of a liquor bar believes that increasing the variety of juices will result in an improvement in consumers, but he is uncertain and requires more data. The owner intends to do research to find out why whether increasing the selection of juices will enable him to gain more consumers.
Importance of Exploratory Research
Exploratory research is done when a topic needs a deeper understanding, especially if it has never been done before. The purpose of such research is to investigate the problem and surround it and not to draw conclusions from it. Such type of research will enable the researcher to lay a solid foundation for evaluating his theories, selecting the correct research design, and obtaining the most important variables in the analysis. Most importantly, such research can help organisations or researchers save more time and resources, as it will make the researcher know what to follow.
Advantages of Exploratory Research
- The researcher has a lot of flexibility and is able to adapt to changes as research progresses.
- It usually costs less
- It helps to lay the groundwork for research, which can lead to further research.
- It enables the researcher to understand in advance, whether the topic is worth investing in time and resources and whether it should be followed.
- It may help some researchers to identify potential causes of the problem, which can also be studied in detail to determine the most common cause of the problem.
Disadvantages of Exploratory Research
- Although it can point you in the right direction for what the answer is, it is usually incomplete.
- The worst part of the experimental study is that they provide quality information.
- In most cases, the experimental study involves a small sample, which is why the results cannot be interpreted accurately to the general population.
- Most of the time, if the data is collected through a second survey, then there is a chance that the data will be old and can be updated.
Conclusive Research Design
In conclusive research, the researchers are able to derive information which is useful for arriving at conclusions or in decision-making. Conclusive research design maybe quantitative or qualitative in nature and it depends on both secondary data as well as primary data. During research, the primary data in existing databases are reanalysed to reveal problems that were not revealed in the original research.
The purpose of conclusive research is to provide a reliable or representative picture of the population through the use of a valid research instruments. In the case of formal research, it will also test hypothesis. Conclusive research can be sub-divided into two major categories namely descriptive research and causal research. Let us now study about these.
The researcher is involved in defining a place or state below their analysis. It is a conceptual framework based on the collection, analysis, and presentation of collected data. This allows the researcher to provide details of why the study was conducted and how.
One has fully understood the problem and then decide whether descriptive research design is applicable. Descriptive research uses the researcher’s ideas and thoughts on the subject to further evaluate their ideas. Descriptive research design helps in describing a particular event, situation, people, group or community or other events.
In a cross-sectional research design study, information is collected from a given sample of target population only once. Cross-sectional research design may be either single cross-sectional design or multiple cross-sectional design. In the single cross-sectional research design, the researchers base their research only on the basis of a single sample (of respondents) that have been drawn from a given target population.
Single cross-sectional research designs are also known as sample survey research designs. On the other hand, multiple cross-sectional research design is a type of research design wherein the researchers base their research on the basis of two or more samples (of respondents) that have been drawn from a given target population or population of interest and where each sample is drawn only once.
In a longitudinal research design, the researcher uses only a fixed sample of respondents from a given target population. The respondents are observed, monitored and variables related to the respondents are measured at different points of time. In such a research design, the sample remains the same over a period of time. In this way, the research reveals different set of results at different time periods. When all the research results can be analysed together, it gives a clear picture of the changes taking place over a given period of time.
Causal Research/Experimental Research
Experimental research design helps in revealing the cause-andeffect status. In experimental or causal design, the researcher looks at the impact that is caused by change in one or more independent variables on the dependent variables. Causal research helps in solving an immediate problem. Dependent variables are used to monitor the change due to independent variables.
Often, causal research is used in research related to social sciences, medical, physics, engineering, etc. In causal research, two or more groups are analysed. Researchers can have participants change their actions and learn how people around them react to a better understanding of social psychology. Causal research requires three main aspects namely review of relevant documents, testing experience and an analysis of cases promoting insight.
In the process of research, it is necessary to review relevant documents in order to take advantage of work that has already been done by other researchers. In addition, the researcher is also able to review the available literature related to the topic that is being researched. At times, the social problems may be so complex that the researcher is unable to gather all the necessary information related to a particular problem.
In such cases, a researcher may seek the help of people who have already been associated with research. In other words, the researcher may make use of experience of other senior researchers. Good use of human experience can be done for selecting respondents. The development of an appropriate test design requires the investigator to make an appropriate selection of respondents.
For this purpose, he must select only those respondents who are honest and who have real knowledge of the problem under investigation. Selection of respondents can be done directly or indirectly. With the right choice, the investigator selects those people who are best known for their knowledge in the problem area. When respondents are selected randomly, the investigator may select those who are not directly concerned about the problem.