How To Conduct A Quantitative Research

How To Conduct A Quantitative ResearchQuantitative research establishes the relationship between different variables, that is, the dependent and independent variables. Two main types of research designs used in the study are descriptive and experimental. In descriptive quantitative research, the researcher investigates the connection between the variables in question, while an experimental quantitative study aims to examine causality. 

In this type of research approach, more structured quantitative tools are used to collect the findings, built around a large sample size representing the overall population. Replicating quantitative research is easy, giving it a higher validity compared to qualitative methods of research. You should aim to get more objective results from the participants. Each tool you plan to use in the study should be well-planned, and structured. Results obtained from quantitative research are in the form of numbers and figures.

Throughout the research, you should maintain objectivity. By being present, you will minimize the chances of tainting the findings, and you can critically assess the data for any bias from you or the participants involved in the study. To ensure you maintain the validity of the research, make sure you measure what you had planned to measure. Additionally, you should control other external variables that may affect your data. Sometimes it may be hard to completely get rid of a confounding external variable from the research; therefore, you should acknowledge it and state how it affected your findings.

Another critical element of the quantitative approach is deductive reasoning. Deductive reasoning refers to how your research narrows down gradually from generic to specific. With this, you will be guaranteed the accuracy of the argument made at the beginning of the research. Some investigators would instead use inductive reasoning at particular points of the study. Make sure you utilize an effective selection process to make your participants representative of the target population. Random sampling is the best choice for getting maximum accuracy. It is also critical that the study’s findings are both generalizable and situational regarding individuals who took part in the research.

You should keep the questions simple. With simple and straightforward questions, you will get the responses you are looking for. Complex analysis methods can be helpful but think about the questions that can be answered efficiently. Ensure you use phrases and terms that the participants can understand. When seeking answers, aim to get participant’s rational and emotional responses and avoid leading conversations toward the responses you expect to hear.

Planning A Quantitative Research

Several steps are taken when planning quantitative research. First and foremost, you should identify the research problem. Next, you should develop the research questions. These are questions that should be answered to address the issue at hand. It is essential to review existing information on the topic to prevent duplication. If the is existing literature, you can rely on their findings. Finally, you should come up with a research plan. In this step, you should identify the target population, sample, and data collection method you will use. You will also have to know how you will conduct data analysis, give recommendations and arrive at a conclusion.

Quantitative Research Methods

We have outlined the main quantitative research methods such as surveys, tracking, experiments, and structured interviews.
  • Survey: Information gathered from questionnaires filled by participants serves as surveys. The questionnaires are often close-ended; respondents are not required to elaborate on their answers. Survey questions should be structured such that they are quick and easy to understand and answer. You can dispatch the questionnaires through a post or by hand. Cheaper and easier methods of dispatching survey questionnaires have been identified today. Since surveys can reach many people and give objective data, they are preferred by investigators for quantitative research. One of the disadvantages of surveys is that you cannot be sure of their validity unless used alongside other methods because respondents do not take them seriously. The validity of surveys can be questioned if participants are not truthful in their answers, you survey the wrong population, or ask wrong questions rendering the survey invalid.  Surveys should be taken from several individuals, and the questions should be well-formulated.
  • Tracking: Tracking involves following a participant’s behaviors and observing them to enable you to form a pattern. It is commonly used by sites that use trackers to inform the servers of one’s internet surfing habits and send advertisements according to the web pages one frequents. Tracking is gradually becoming common in market research due to the development of technology that enables investigators to track client behavior. Although some customers will not like the idea of being tracked because it is an intrusion of privacy, it will show researchers who their customers are. Before choosing this method, you should weigh if it is worth the data and the amount of deception required.
  • Experiments: Experiments rely on theories. Quantitative researchers also perform experiments to manipulate one variable to give a change in the other variable. The experimental research analysis is done to prove or disprove a statement. The findings and results obtained from experiments are valuable, especially for consumer decisions, product testing, gauging product pricing, and trying to know people’s reactions to specific tweaks in products that already exist. The findings from experiments are valid and reliable. However, they are time-consuming and costly because of the number of variables you wish to control.
  • Structured interviews: Structured interviews include well-thought and planned questions by the researcher before meeting with the participants. The participants will be asked the questions, but they do not have to give descriptive responses like open-ended interviews. Structure interviews focus on the main point; thus, they are easier to quantify since they limit the participants’ responses when being interviewed. You can use the data collected from a structured interview to develop quantitative data by converting the responses into percentages or giving them a numeric value. You need to cross-check answers from different participants and come up with conclusive findings. Despite the perks, structured interviews have a disadvantage; it is impossible to know participants’ motivations and reasons behind their answers.

Navigating the intricacies of quantitative research may seem daunting, but by following a step-by-step guide and seeking support when needed, you can successfully navigate the process. Remember to adhere to ethical guidelines, maintain data integrity, and present your results in a manner that effectively communicates the importance of your research. If you require guidance or support along the way, feel free to reach out to us for a complimentary 30-minute consultation to help you achieve your research goals

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