In this paper, I will define quantitative and qualitative research methods and provide examples in the context of social issues which will hopefully provide insight into how this methods are properly applied.
Social issues are very broad and diverse and are usually made up of factors or consequences which directly or indirectly affect a person or many members of a society and are considered to be problems, controversies or both and are related to moral values, therefore their immediate social environment may become vulnerable in some respect which may also effect several individuals environment and in turn society.
There are two methods of approaching study of the world; deductive and inductive (L. Osburn, personal communication, August 11, 2011).
Quantitative research uses a deductive reasoning also known as top to bottom or (top down approach) starting with a theory, then the hypothesis, followed by observation and finally confirmation , going from the general to the more specific. Quantitative methods use numbers and statistics to show the results of the research exercise and mainly are concerned with mathematics and statistics. In quantitative research there are levels of measurement being firstly nominal which are names of things followed by ordinal sequence of things, interval where the sequence has equal distance between each item, and ratio where there is a true zero (Alston & Bowles, 2003, p. 7-9).
Quantitative research is the oldest form of research; it is incredibly formal, stemming from positivism paradigm, or the outside looking in approach. The method is about trying to establish cause and affect relationships between variables. This method can be considered non biased as the researcher isn’t us...
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...or hindrance? Outcomes of social work student placements. Australian Social Work, 58(3), 301–312. doi:10.1111/j.1447-0748.2005.00222.x
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Research methods knowledge base, deduction and induction the web centre for social research methods. Retrieved from: http://www.socialresearchmethods.net/kb/dedind.php
Coster, P., & Woolf, A. (Eds.).(2011). World book: South Africa’s Anti-Apartheid Movement, (pp. 56-57). Arcturus Publishers: Chicago.
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