Aliaga and Gunderson () describe Quantitative research as “Explaining phenomena by collecting numerical data that are analysed using mathematically . collection and analysis of information is conducted utilizing “ mathematically based methods ” (Aliaga & Gunderson, ; cited in Muijs. The following definition, taken from Aliaga and Gunderson (), .. and Morison, K. () Research Methods in Education, 5th edn .

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Skip to main content. Log In Sign Up. Qualitative and Quantitative research approaches. It involves the study of any imaginable phenomenon in any field as long as institutional human subjects are a,iaga. In qualitative research, the why and how of decision making are studied. A qualitative researcher holds that understanding comes from exploring the totality of the situation e.

Qualitative research often categorizes data into patterns i. In the field of civil and Environmental Alixga, Qualitative research approach method is being used in studying and investigating reasons, relationships, and phenomena and sometimes able to project likelihoods, and tendencies. Delphi Method is a qualitative method that has found its application in the civil and construction engineering research practices.

It is used for forecasting in situations in which historical data are unavailable or which explore far into the future. Researchers are always encouraged to explore all gundeeson and objective options for the collection of such data before considering a qualitative method such as Delphi. However he noted that when the Delphi process is gunderzon there are three alternative methods of 200 expert opinion that may be considered: In his study, he explored the patterns of information seeking by engineers and research scientists at xliaga Norwegian research centre in different phases and types of projects.

He identified eight major characteristics in the patterns; surveying; chaining; monitoring; browsing; distinguishing; filtering; extracting and ending. In his work, the requirements for different types of information in an environment where the need for internal and external resources are intertwined were analysed. Features of these information seeking patterns of the engineers and research scientists were also compared to that of previous studies.

His findings shows that there were differences in the features of their information seeking patterns but their behavioural characteristics were aliqga. His study also identified the identical categories ad information seeking behaviour of the research scientists and engineers to those of previous studies of academic researchers. Ellis, Another example is a research carried out by Walton S.

The aim of the research was to identify how suppliers in the supply chain can be effectively integrated into Environmental Management processes. The research employed accepted Qualitative research method approach applied to five different companies in the furniture industry as case studies.

Such as; Materials used in product design for the environment, product design processes, supplier process improvement, supplier evaluation, and inbound logistics processes. The experiences of the five companies illustrated the types of environmentally friendly practices used in each of these primary areas. Rules of thumb which purchasing and supply chain managers can apply were identified alongside a number of supply chain environmentally-friendly practices EFP.

The research work highlighted the need to move beyond environmental compliance to achieve a proactive environmentally-friendly supply chain. It was observed that there are gradually increasing numbers of women in professional construction hunderson and their success appears to depend on being able to fit in to the dominant masculine culture of long working hours and the male pub gathering. However, when all criteria are fulfilled for the use of Delphi method, it is a gundersoon effective research method for the civil, environmental and construction environment.


The Sage Handbook of Qualitative Research 3rd ed. Looking at the bright side: A positive approach to qualitative policy and evaluation research.

Homes, neighborhoods and personal connections. Policy data as a social process: A qualitative approach to quantitative data. Adn Qualitative Means to a Better Future, accessed at http: The effects aoiaga four group decision-making formats. Modelling the information seeking patterns of engineers and research scientists in an industrial environment.

Journal of documentation, 53 4Walton, S.

The green supply chain: Journal of Supply Chain Management, 34 22. Instead of testing, measuring, and experimenting, qualitative research aims at understanding the subject of study Mayring Creswell defines qualitative research as the process of understanding a social or human phenomenon, based on methodological research traditions. Researchers aim at generating a complex, holistic view, at analysing and describing the Research Methodology standpoint of the subjects within a natural context Creswell Quantitative Research As the name implies, Quantitative research is based on the measurement of quantities i.

The relationship between theory and data In Qualitative researches, the techniques for methodology are often times unstructured or semi-structured unlike Quantitative research which uses highly structured, rigid techniques. Qualitative research allows unlimited expression from respondents; quantitative research relies on responses to pre-formulated questions. It involves a continual interplay between theory and analysis and its findings are often not conclusive.

Aliaga & Gunderson, Interactive Statistics, 3rd Edition | Pearson

However, these findings are valuable in developing a deep understanding of a given thematic complex and sound rationale for further decision making. On the other hand, Quantitative research is statistical in nature. It employs different forms of statistical tools and it is empirical in nature. In qualitative research, data largely comprises of texts and pictures while in quantitative gundreson, the data are in numbers and empirical in nature.

In general, inquiries in qualitative researches are usually subjective and biased since humans and opinions are involved while for quantitative research, inquiries are objective and unbiased. So it moves from the data to a theory. Its approach is generally idiographic: Hence the gundersonn collected in qualitative research tends gujderson be oriented toward individuals and case studies. In the case of Quantitative research, its focus is on generalisation and working towards the development of universal statements or laws.

Hence the data collected tend to be aggregated across individuals. Epistemological considerations By definition, epistemology has to do with the body of knowledge, in particular its foundations, scope and validity. There are two broad epistemological positions: Epistemology seeks to know the relationship between the knower and what is known; how do we know what we know and what counts as knowledge.

In terms of the body of knowledge, qualitative research approach is exploratory as little is known about the problem but there is a detailed understanding of a central phenomenon.

On the other hand, there is a better understanding of the problem in the case of quantitative approach. Qualitative research is concerned anc critical epistemology which in other words is called an interpretivist-constructivist approach.


Critical epistemology reveals social science is fundamentally different from hard science in that it requires the interpretative approach through the study of texts, meanings and context. According to this paradigm the nature of inquiry is interpretive and the purpose of inquiry is to understand particular phenomenon, not to generalize to a population Farzanfar, Researchers within the interpretivist paradigm are naturalistic.

They apply to real-world situations as they unfold naturally, they are more specifically, tend to be non-manipulative, unobtrusive, and non-controlling. Qualitative research methodology often relies on personal contact over some period of time between the researcher and the group being studied. Quantitative research is however connected to a positivist epistemology.

Positivism is an organised method of combining deductive logic and empirical observations of individual behaviour as defined by Neuman in order to discover and confirm a set of probabilistic causal laws that can gunderzon used to predict general patterns of human activity. The nature of social reality for positivists is that: A basic assumption of this paradigm is that the goal of science is to develop the most objective methods possible to get the closest approximation of reality.

Researchers who work from this perspective explain in quantitative terms how variables interact, shape events, and cause outcomes; and the researcher is independent from what is being researched. They often develop and test these explanations in experimental studies.

Multivariate analysis and techniques for statistical prediction are among the classic contributions of this type of research. This framework maintains that reliable knowledge is based on direct observation or manipulation of natural phenomena through empirical, often experimental, means. This is the epistemological assumption in quantitative research.

Interactive Statistics, 3rd Edition

In short, Explanation 200 human behaviour must be supported by facts and these facts are measured. Ontological considerations Ontology has to do with the nature of being Crotty: Guba and Lincolin Quantitative research follows the path of objectivism in which the researcher sees himself as independent and unattached.

In the epistemological context, the researcher is a positivist who is only exploring the nature of reality. To them reality is seen as a human construct and the research findings in qualitative methodology are usually reported descriptively using words Mutch, In other words, people make sense of their own reality Fekede,hence results and facts are bound to be subjective as opposed to objectivism characterised of Quantitative research.

However, depending on the case, the two approaches can be combined in a single research for optimal and well-rounded results. Saddle River, p Bassey, M. Moor Press Bogdan, R. An Introduction to Theory and Methods.

The Debate about Qualitative and Quantitative Research. A Question of Methods or Epistemology. The British Journal of Sociology. Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches. Sage Publications Creswell, J. Qualitative, quantitative and mixed method approaches. Mixed methods procedures, pp. Research Methods in Education 5th Ed. The Foundations of Social Research: Meaning and Perspective in the Research Process.

Reflection on Ontological, Epistemological and Methodological Perspectives.

A Handbook of Media and Communications Research. Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches 5th ed.