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We are with
DUE TO THIS WHEN THE UNKNOWN
CONFRONTS US, WE WONDER AND OUR
CURIOSITY MAKES US PROBE AND
ATTTAIN TOTAL UNDERSTAINDING TO
RESEARCH IS A systematized effort to
gain new knowledge.
IN A TECHNICAL SENSE
DEFINING AND REDEFINING PROBLEMS
FORMULATING HYPOTHESIS OR SUGGESTED
COLLECTING, ORGANIZING AND EVALUATING DATA
MAKING DEDUCTIONS AND REACHING
AT LAST CAREFULLY TESTING THE CONCLUSIONS TO
DETERMINE WHETHER THEY FIT THE FORMULATING
RESEARCH IS AN ORIGINAL
TO THE EXISTING STOCK OF KNOWLEDGE
MAKING IT MORE ADVANCES.
IT IS THE OF TRUTH WITH THE
HELP OF STUDY, OBSERVATION, COMPARISON
THE MAIN AIM OF RESEARCH IS TO FIND OUT THE TRUTH WHICH IS
HIDDEN AND WHICH HAS NOT BEEN DISCOVERED AS YET.
BUT WE MAY POINT THE FOLLOWING AS MAIN FOCUS
TO GAIN FAMILIARITY WITH A PHENOMENON OR TO ACHIEVE NEW
INSIGHTS INTO IT. (EXPLORATORY OR FORMULATIVE RESEARCH
TO DESCRIBE ACCURATELY THE CHARACTERISTICS OF A PARTICULAR
INDIVIDUAL, SITUATION OR A GROUP. (DESCRIPTIVE RESEARCH
TO DETERMINE THE FREQUENCYWITHWHICH SOMETHING OCCURS
OR WITH WHICH IT IS ASSOCIATED WITH SOMETHING ELSE.
TO TEST A HYPOTHESIS OF A CAUSAL RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN
As a concept, ‘research ethics’ refers to a complex set of values,
standards and institutional schemes that help to constitute and
regulate scientific activity. Ultimately, research ethics is a
codification of ethics of science in practice.
In other words, it is based on general ethics of science, just as
general ethics is based on commonsense morality.
There are several reasons why it is important to follow the ethical
norms in research.
1. Norms promote the aims of research, such as knowledge, truth,
and avoidance of error.
2. research often involves a great deal of cooperation and
coordination among many different people in different disciplines
and institutions, ethical standards promote the values that are
essential to collaborative work, such as trust, accountability,
mutual respect, and fairness.
Many of the ethical norms help to ensure that researchers
can be held accountable to the public.
Ethical norms in research also help to build public
support for research. People more likely to fund research
project if they can trust the quality and integrity of
Many of the norms of research promote a variety of other
important moral and social values, such as social
responsibility, human rights, compliance with the law, and
health and safety.
Ethical lapses in research can significantly harm students,
and the public.
The following is a rough and general summary of some
ethical principals such as:
Strive for honesty in all scientific communications.
Honestly report data, results, methods and procedures, and
publication status. Do not fabricate, falsify, or misrepresent
data. Do not deceive colleagues, granting agencies, or the
Strive to avoid bias in experimental design, data analysis,
data interpretation, peer review, personnel decisions, grant
writing, expert testimony, and other aspects of research
where objectivity is expected or required. Avoid or
minimize bias or self-deception. Disclose personal or
financial interests that may affect research.
Keep your promises and agreements; act with
sincerity; strive for consistency of thought and action.
Avoid careless errors and negligence; carefully and
critically examine your own work and the work of your
peers. Keep good records of research activities, such as
data collection, research design, and correspondence
with agencies or journals.
Share data, results, ideas, tools, resources. Be open to
criticism and new ideas.
Protect confidential communications, such as papers
or grants submitted for publication, personnel records,
trade or military secrets, and patient records.
Publish in order to advance research and scholarship,
not to advance just your own career. Avoid wasteful
and duplicative publication.
Help to educate, mentor, and advise students. Promote
their welfare and allow them to make their own
Respect for colleagues
Respect your colleagues and treat them fairly.
Strive to promote social good and prevent or mitigate
social harms through research, public education, and
Avoid discrimination against colleagues or students on
the basis of sex, race, ethnicity, or other factors that are
not related to their scientific competence and
Maintain and improve your own professional
competence and expertise through lifelong education
and learning; take steps to promote competence in
science as a whole.
Know and obey relevant laws and institutional and
Human Subjects Protection
When conducting research on human subjects,
minimize harms and risks and maximize benefits;
respect human dignity, privacy, and autonomy.
There are various methods to classify the research.
On the basis of basic nature of research (Pure and
applied research) or on the basis of data dealt
(Qualitative and Quantitative research)
Main purposes of social research are:
In this way, we may illustrate three types of research
attempts to gain
Descriptive research provide answer to questions of who,
what, where and how associated with a particular research
A descriptive study cannot conclusively establish answer to
Descriptive research is used to obtain information
concerning the current status of the phenomena and to
describe “what exists” with respect to variables or
conditions in a situation.
In such a study subject is being observed in a completely
natural and unchanged natural environment.
It yield rich data that lead to important recommendations.
Descriptive research is often used as a pre-cursor to more
quantitatively research designs.
An exploratory research is conducted about a
research problem when there are few or no earlier
studies to refer to.
The focus is on gaining insights and familiarity for
later investigation or undertaken when problems
are in a preliminary stage of investigation.
It is a useful for gaining background information
on a particular topic.
Exploratory research is flexible and can address
research questions of all types (what, why, how).
Explanatory research may be thought as understanding a
phenomenon in terms of conditional statements in form, if ‘X’
It is mainly concerned with causes or ‘why’ factor about some
The hypothesis in an explanatory research that expresses
relationship between two or more variables, i.e. not only
hypothesized that X is related to Y but rather that X has some
particular effect on Y.
In other words, we say that Y is the consequence of X.
Explanatory research focuses on ascertaining the ‘why’ aspect of
This kind of research helps researchers understand why the
world works the way it does through the process of proving a
causal link between variables and eliminating other possibilities.
of social world
PURE RESEARCH is
also called basic
research, is concerned
with quest for knowledge
and knowing more about
without concern for its
practical use and also
with developing and
testing hypothesis and
APPLIED RESEARCH is
concerned with search
for ways of using
scientific knowledge to
solve practical problems.
It focuses on analyzing
and solving social and
and its effect
It is a research in which some of the variables
being studied are manipulated or which seek to
control condition within which persons are
Here ‘control’ means holding one factor
constant while other are free to vary in the
experiment. One variable (independent) is
manipulated and its effect upon another
variable (dependent) is measured, while other
variable which may confound such a
relationship are eliminated or controlled.
Aims at discovering
underlying motives and
Word Association Test,
Sentence Completion Test Or
Other Projective Technique
measurement and use of
statistical analysis. This
kind of research is based
on the methodological
principles of positivism
and follows the
standards of strict
sampling and research
non-quantitative type of
analysis. It describes
reality as experienced by
Study of problem over a
period of time or cross-sectional
Study of similarities or
RESEARCH involves the
study of the problem or
the same body of
phenomena over a period
of time. For example
prevalence of AIDS
among males and
females in India in 1979,
1989, and 1999
different units or cultural
or social groups are
There are some other types of research
Field setting research or laboratory research
or simulation research
Clinical or diagnostic research
Research methodology is a way to systematically
solve the research problem.
It may be understood as a science of studying how
research is done scientifically.
In it we study the various steps that are generally
adopted by a researcher in studying his research
problem along with the logic behind them.
When we talk of research methodology we not only
talk of the research methods but also consider the
logic behind the methods we use in the context of our
research study and explain why we are using a
particular method and why we are not using others so
that research results are capable of being evaluated
either by researcher himself or by other.
Methodological and philosophical orientations govern
the choice of methods. It helps us to identify
appropriate methods and techniques of data
Positivistic orientation : observational method
Phenomenological model : interviews
Post-modern model : multidimensional
Action research : multiple methods and
Research methods may be understood as all those methods that
are used for conduction of research.
In other words, all those methods which are used by the
researcher during the course of studying his research problem
are termed as research methods.
It can be put into the following three groups:
In the first group we include those methods which are
concerned with the collection of data. These methods will be
used where the data already available are not sufficient to
arrive at the required solution;
The second group consists of those statistical techniques
which are used for establishing relationships between the
data and the unknowns;
The third group consists of those methods which are used to
evaluate the accuracy of the results obtained.
Field study method:-
in this method subject are observed under their usual
environmental condition of life rather than under
laboratory conditions. The subject may or may not be
aware of being observed. Often interviews are used in
in which variables being studied are controlled by the
investigator. In other words, the effect of one variable
is observed while other relevant variables are held
in which a systematic study of a particular community
or a group or an institution is made for analyzing the
problem/ issue/ event.
Case study method:-
in which phenomena is studied through thorough/
intensive/in-depth analysis of the cases, i.e. an
individual, group, community, episode or any other
unit of social life. Variety of facts is related to a single
in which data is collected quantitatively or by
statistics. A statistics may be a measure of central
tendency of dispersion of correlation of difference
between two samples.
in which information is collected about the past
from written records of all types, reports,
documents, newspapers, diaries, travelers’
in which changes is studied in stages through time
from earlier and generally simpler forms through a
long series of small changes. Each changes results in
minor modification but the cumulative effect of many
changes over a long period of time in the emergence of
more complex forms.
Non-participant direct observation method: in this
method researcher observe the phenomena but not
participate in the phenomena. For example:
Observational behavioral scales, use of score cards,
Participant observation method: in this method
researcher observe the phenomena with participating
in the phenomena. . For example: Interactional
recording, possible use of tape recorders, photo
graphic techniques etc.
There are other various methods used in social
sciences like mass observation, mail questionnaire,
opinionnaire, personal interview, focused interview,
group interview etc.
The selection of methods broadly depends on nature
of research and universe.
Research process consists of a number of closely
These activities overlap continuously rather than
following a strictly prescribed sequence. At times, the
first step determines the nature of the last step to be
One should remember that the various steps involved
in a research process are not mutually exclusive; nor
are they separate and distinct. They do not necessarily
follow each other in any specific order and the
researcher has to be constantly anticipating at each
step in the research process the requirements of the
VARIOUS STEPS OF RESEARCH PROCESS
Defining research problem
Reviewing the literature
Identifying the universe
and unit of study
and identifying variables
Selection of research
techniques and methods
Pilot study/ use of statistical
and other methods
Interpretation and report writing
The first step is to select and clearly define the
problem to be researched. You need to find the
problem and formulate it so that it can be subjected to
Specifying the problem/ topic to be studied on the
basis of one’s interest and idea of research. The idea
might come from a theory, a sponsored research or
one’s own interest in specific field.
Give as much emphasis to the area of research as
the topic. To some extent, the choice of the area
determines the success of your research.
For instance, a study on communal relations
cannot be carried out in tribal village.
A good researcher needs to be fully aware of the limits
of your resources and also clearly define the time
frame while designing your research. Unless you draw
up a schedule of the different steps of your research, it
is likely to become a long drawn process, which is bad
for both quality and relevance.
Ex. Cholera epidemics….
But in social sciences unless we not get
liberal time in our research, it will fail
because we cannot subject social
realities to overnight machine test in
the laboratory to obtain quick results.
The purpose of reviewing the existing literature on
your research theme is to help you assess the
feasibility of the project but also to formulate an
effective methodology. You would need to consult
academic journals, conferences, government report,
books, internet, etc.
You may review two types of literature, literature
concerning the concepts and theories, and the
empirical literature consisting of studies made
earlier. You may come across even such studies that
contain both theoretical as well as substantive aspects
of your research. A more sophisticated and clearer
statement of specific research question is likely to
emerge after the literature review.
The hypothesis is a tentative assumption made in
order to test its logical or empirical consequences.
You may define a hypothesis as a proposition or a
set of proposition set forth as an explanation for
the occurrence of some specified phenomena
either asserted merely as a provisional conjecture
to guide some investigation or accepted as highly
probable in the light of established facts.
A hypothesis may have variables and it may be
looking for the nature of the relationship
between the variables.
Dependent variables: the variable that you wish to
Independent variables: other variables expected
to explain the change in dependent variables
Relationship among variables:
We discussed earlier in methodology.
Our methodological and philosophical
orientations govern our choice of methods.
Methodological and theoretical basis of research
also help you identify appropriate methods and
techniques of data collection.
Before starting with data collection you have to
identify the universe and the unit of study. The
identification of universe implies demarcation of the
physical area and social unit of study. The universe
consists of the population within a well-defined area
where the study is to be conducted. However such a
group is usually too large and not possible to be
covered by a single investigator.
A pilot study is an exploratory study done before
the actual work starts in the field. It is a pre-testing
of your research methods and techniques
in order to perfect them. Pilot study will ensure
that right questions have been put in the
questionnaires for making the fieldwork fruitful.
It makes you aware of difficulties beforehand and
provides you an opportunity of modifying your
techniques to suit field condition.
A universe is often too large for an individual to
work upon. A sample is the smaller
representation of a larger whole. Sampling allows
the researcher to work scientifically and saves
time. A sampling frame includes all the elements
of a population from which the sample is drawn.
The determination of an error while sampling,
statistically, or qualitatively is known as sampling
Therefore a sample must be a true representative
as well as being adequate in size.
Portion of a population or universe which represent
the characteristics of population is called sample
and the method of selection of such sample is
known as sampling.
On the basis of nature of research and population there
are different sampling methods:
1) Simple random sampling 2) Multi-stage sampling
3) Systematic sampling 4) Stratified random
5) Cluster sampling 6) Snow-ball sampling
7) Area sampling 8) Quota sampling
Often in social research requires the study of the
‘other’ community and researchers need to make
extensive preparations to gain entry into the
society under study.
Study on alien society or culture.
Study on own society or culture.
There is several way of data collection:
1. Primary data: those data which are
collected by researcher himself.
2. Secondary data: data which we get by
After data collection, you would turn to their analysis.
Analysis requires a number of closely related operation
such as establishing categories and their application to raw
data through coding, tabulation so that you can draw
Often the nature of data collected by you determines the
nature of analysis, yet at the stage of opting for certain
methods of data collection you would have some idea of
the analytical tools you are likely to employ.
Keep in mind the ethics of representation, especially if the
research deals with sensitive issues. While you seek to
unravel social reality, you cannot play with the privacy of
the peoplewho are more than just the subject of research.
Whatever may be the types of research works and
studies, one thing that is important is that they all
meet on the common ground of scientific method
employed by them. One expects scientific research to
satisfy the following criteria:
The purpose of the research should be clearly defined
and common concepts be used.
The research procedure used should be described in
sufficient detail to permit another researcher to repeat
the research for further advancement, keeping the
continuity of what has already been attained.
The procedural design of the research should be
carefully planned to yield results that areas objective as
The researcher should report with complete
frankness, flaws in procedural design and estimate
their effects upon the findings.
The analysis of data should be sufficiently adequate
to reveal its significance and the methods of
analysis used should be appropriate. The validity
and reliability of the data should be checked
Conclusions should be confined to those justified
by the data of the research and limited to those for
which the data provide an adequate basis.
Greater confidence in research is warranted if the
researcher is experienced, has a good reputation in
research and is a person of integrity.