Types Of Descriptive Research Methods

Descriptive research is an important type of research that involves describing a situation, event, or phenomenon. It is usually conducted to obtain information about the characteristics or nature of a particular group, situation, or organization. There are different types of descriptive research methods that are used by researchers, and this article will explore some of them in detail.

Observational Study Method

Observational study is usually conducted to observe or measure behavior, attitudes, and characteristics of an individual or a group of people. In this method, the researcher observes the behavior of the subjects, without interfering or manipulating the situation. This method can be further subdivided into naturalistic observation and participant observation.

In naturalistic observation, the researcher observes the behavior of the subjects in their natural settings, without manipulating the situation. The researcher does not interfere with the subject and can only make observations. Participant observation, on the other hand, involves the researcher becoming part of the group being studied. In this method, the researcher interacts with the subjects, participates in activities and observes their behavior.

Survey Method

The survey method is a type of descriptive research method that involves collecting information about people’s opinions, attitudes, and behaviors through questionnaires or online surveys. This method is commonly used in social science research and market research. The survey method can be further subdivided into cross-sectional studies and longitudinal studies.

Cross-sectional studies are conducted at a specific point in time and provide information about the group being studied at that moment. Longitudinal studies, on the other hand, are conducted over a longer period, often more than a year. These studies collect information about the group being studied at different intervals, providing a better understanding of how the group has changed over time.

Case Study Method

Case study method is a type of descriptive research method that involves the in-depth examination of a particular individual, group, or situation to gain an understanding of the subject being studied. The researcher collects data by interviews, observations, and document analysis. Cases can be used to explore complex issues, generate hypotheses or provide insights into a phenomenon.

Case studies can be further subdivided into single-case studies and multiple-case studies. Single case study involves the in-depth examination of a single object of analysis, while multiple-case studies involve the examination of more than one object of analysis.

Correlational Method

Correlational method involves the collection of data on two or more variables to determine whether there is a relationship between them. This method is common in social science research and can be used to explore how various factors are related to one another. Research using correlational methods cannot determine cause and effect, but it can provide some indications of the possible relationships between variables.

Conclusion

Descriptive research methods are essential in providing insight into a particular situation, group, or phenomenon. These methods include observational study, survey method, case study method, and correlational method. Observational study involves observing the behavior of subjects without interfering or manipulating the situation. The survey method involves collecting information from people about their opinions, attitudes, and behaviors through questionnaires or online surveys. The case study method involves in-depth examination of a person or group, while correlational method involves collecting data about two or more variables to determine their possible relationship. Each of these methods has its strengths and weaknesses, and researchers should choose the method that best suits their research objective.

FAQs

FAQs: Types of Descriptive Research Methods

What is descriptive research?

Descriptive research is a research method that is used to describe a certain situation or phenomenon. This type of research involves collecting data and analyzing it to gain an understanding of the topic without altering the situation. It is often used in social sciences to study behaviour, attitudes and opinions of individuals or groups.

What are the types of descriptive research methods?

There are four main types of descriptive research methods, including case studies, surveys, naturalistic observation and archival research. Case studies involve in-depth investigation of one individual or group, surveys involve asking participants about their attitudes and experiences, naturalistic observation involves observing subjects in their natural environment and archival research involves examining historical records and documents.

What are the advantages of using descriptive research?

Descriptive research provides a detailed and thorough understanding of a certain topic. It can help identify patterns and trends, and provide a basis for further research. It is a useful tool in fields such as psychology, sociology, marketing and education. Additionally, descriptive research can provide insight into real-world situations that may not be possible to recreate in a laboratory setting.


References

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