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Critical reflection of quantitative and qualitative research methods Essay Example

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Critical reflection 2

Critical reflection of quantitative and qualitative research methods

Mixed methods

The research conducted on impact of Facebook on reality friendship used mixed methods. This means that whole process involved collecting, analysing and mixing both quantitative and qualitative research methods in the single study with the sole purpose of understanding the research problem. In the research, data from qualitative methods and quantitative methods were collected independently and concurrently and then the results were compared. This process of mixing is termed as triangulation. By use of this technique, it was possible to have strengths that offset the weakness of both quantitative and qualitative method in the research. Furthermore, it is believed that mixed methods of research provide a more comprehensive evidence for studying a research problem. Through mixed methods, the research was possible to answer questions that could not be answered by either quantitative method of qualitative method when used alone (Sagepub.com).

Qualitative methods

The research employed qualitative research methods. Here questionnaires and interview as primary source of data collection were used. The method of research used reasoning known inductive pattern. Case study was done on the university students; there were quite a number of Chinese students. They had a unique cultural beliefs, values and norms that will define the direction of the study. The sampling technique used was purposeful and chain sampling here interviews targets the Chinese students in campus. The sample obtained through proportional methods. The first students were contacted and led the interview to students. After getting forty students, they were requested to have focus group discussions.

When reasoning, i believe it is important to identify the best techniques such as whether it is an emic or etic approach. Emic approach involves looking at scenes from the actor’s point of view. Tracy, (2013, p. 22) argue that in inductive emic approach the researcher first observes the interaction, after that does a conceptualization of general patterns derived from the observation, then make reasonable claims and finally build theory , this kind of reasoning is also known as bottom -up approach. The use of a given group of students from research was justified because I believe it helps understand the cultures. Tracy, (2013, p. 7) argues that qualitative research is useful when an understanding of range of society issues is what the researcher seeks. Without this in mind, I know that the researcher would not have clearly understood the affected society or a group of students.

Drawing a sample from the population is important in research. In the research, the choice of chain sampling is quite appropriate. In my own opinion, samplings starts with a few group of people or samples that are well understood in terms of the characteristics important in research, then they will help in identifying the same attributes from the population since they know each other. Use of questionnaires and interview is appropriate in getting information for research. I have a strong opinion that the two methods of data collection are helpful in getting firsthand information. Review of relevant literature in my own understanding is tiresome and in other cases need special request in such case where confidential information is sought.

Quantitative methods

The research hypothesis and is deductive in nature. Structured questionnaires were employed and self-administration of questionnaires was done. Questionnaires were used issued to the students using computer-based program. This was computerized questionnaires. There was control groups one used Facebook and group two did not use Facebook. The sampling was based on based on representative sample and the sample size used was obtained using proportional method. Sampling technique that the research used is convenient sampling. The contacts of the as well as email addresses of the interviewers were collected sorted and were communicated to via email.

Deductive reasoning is the top bottom approach in reasoning. Tracy, (2013, p. 22) argue that in deductive reasoning researcher start by a general theory , then proceed to formulate hypothesis ,conducts research to test the hypothesis and finally come up with a theory based on the results obtained. In my view, the research implemented this by following the necessary steps. The research using quantitative method formulated hypothesis. These are explanation, which give account for the facts tested through further investigation (Muijs, 2004, p.16).

One cannot carry out a research and use the whole population, this means one has to do sampling. Use of questionnaires in this method of research in my view was crucial. There are methods of administering questionnaires I have come across but of all those, the best is computerized administration method this is because it offers instant response and is easy to administer furthermore it covers a wide target sample within a shorter time. Because this method requires use of control groups, In my opinion the choice of two groups by the researcher was professional because the identification and subdividing the experiment into two, those that use Facebook and those that do not.

Combining the two method quantitative and qualitative methods is termed as mixed methods. I believe by using the mixed method known as triangulation is helpful in research. And I agreed with Hesse-Biber, (2010, p. 4) who argues mixed methods in research fortifies and enriches the conclusion in research. It also helps the researcher to gain full understanding of the problem. This is known as complementarity. It is now clear and I believe that many will agree with me that quantitative methods in research needs to be deductive and use of appropriate hypothesis derived from research objectives. Use of appropriate samples and sampling techniques is crucial to success of research. I believe that with this knowledge, selecting appropriate data collection methods such as questionnaires and use of the right method of distribution should be at the heart of every researcher.

References

Hesse-Biber, S. (2010). Mixed methods research. 1st ed. New York: Guilford Press.

Muijs, D. (2004). Doing quantitative research in education with SPSS. 1st ed. London: SAGE.

Sagepub.com, (2014). Understanding Mixed Methods research. 1st ed. [ebook] Available at: http://www.sagepub.com/upm-data/10981_Chapter_1.pdf [Accessed 21 May. 2014].

Tracy, S. (2013). Qualitative research methods. 1st ed. Chichester, West Sussex, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.