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What is Scientific Research?
In our daily lives, and professional work,
we frequently meet problems to be overcome
and questions to be answered;
Our minds automatically think, formulate,
develop, test, and examine hypotheses to solve these problems and questions.
When we do this consciously, working scientifically and systematically to solve our problems and questions,
we are conducting scientific research.
So, What is Research?
Research is systematic work that involves the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data to:
1. Answer a question
2. Solve a problem
3. Test a hypothesis
4. Gain new knowledge
Systematic means: conducted objectively according to specific principles and procedures.
2. Script 2: Types of Research
Fundamental Types of Research Include
1. Basic research
2. Applied research, and
3. Evaluative research
1. Basic Research
• Research that aims to answer a question or solve a problem, regardless of the applied practical method.
This could be practical or theoretical research.
• It depends on curiosity and the ability of the researcher to describe and understand the question, problem, or hypothesis.
It focuses on the generation of new knowledge.
Example: Einstein’s special theory of relativity and Planck’s quantum hypothesis.
2. Applied Research
• Research that uses existing knowledge to develop new technologies and artifacts.
• It uses practical methods to answer your question, solve your problem, and test your hypothesis.
Example: application of basic knowledge of electricity and magnetism to discover the electric motor.
3. Evaluative Research
• Research concerned with the systematic evaluation of institutions, projects, and interventions.
The evaluation involves using quantitative measures.
Evaluative research involves the three subtypes: descriptive, normative, and impact research.
1. Descriptive research: describes the goals, processes, and expected outcomes.
2. Normative research: evaluates the goals according to several criteria.
3. Impact research: evaluates the effects on society and nature as well as the costs and benefits.
3. Script 3: Types of Research … Cont.
Research is also classified according to
1. Studied discipline
2. Aim, and
3. Data
According to the studied discipline, research projects are classified as:
1. Multidisciplinary Research.
2. Interdisciplinary Research.
Multidisciplinary Research involves scientists from several disciplines working collaboratively on the same project. It may contain both basic and applied types of research at the same time.
Example: Drug Discovery and Development projects.
Interdisciplinary Research tries to integrate the aspects of two or more disciplines to generate a new hybrid discipline. It aims to solve complex problems.
Example: Neuroscience research projects.
According to the aim, research projects are classified as:
1. Exploratory or Explanatory Research.
2. Inductive or Deductive Research.
• Exploratory Research aims to explore the main aspects of the research question, problem, or hypothesis.
• Explanatory Research aims to explain the causes and consequences of a known problem.
• Inductive Research aims to develop a theory.
• Deductive Research aims to test a theory.
According to the data, research projects are classified as:
1. Qualitative or Quantitative Research.
2. Primary or Secondary Research.
3. Descriptive or Experimental Research.
Qualitative Research concerns interpreting the subjects under study.
It uses unstructured and non-numerical data.
Quantitative Research concerns measuring the subjects under study.
It uses structured and numerical data.
Primary Research: data are collected directly by the researchers.
Secondary Research: data has already been collected by another researcher.
Descriptive Research: aims to describe the subject under study.
Experimental Research: looks at how, when, and why to determine the cause and effect of the subject under study.
In summary, fundamental types of research include Basic, Applied, and Evaluative research.
Research is also classified according to studied discipline, Aim, and Data.
According to the studied discipline, research projects are classified as Multidisciplinary and Interdisciplinary Research.
According to the aim, research projects are classified as Exploratory or Explanatory Research. Inductive or Deductive Research.
According to the data, research projects are classified as:
Qualitative or Quantitative Research. Primary or Secondary Research. Descriptive or Experimental Research.