Skip Nav

Difference Between Qualitative and Quantitative Research

Differences

❶If your study aims to find out, for example, what the dominant human behavior is towards a particular object or event and at the same time aims to examine why this is the case, it is then ideal to make use of both methods.

Quantitative Research

Qualitative Research
How to Cite
Qualitative research – the emphasis is on understanding

Methods Non-structured techniques like In-depth interviews, group discussions etc. Structured techniques such as surveys, questionnaires and observations. Result Develops initial understanding Recommends final course of action. Qualitative research is one which provides insights and understanding of the problem setting. It is an unstructured, exploratory research method that studies highly complex phenomena that are impossible to elucidate with the quantitative research.

Although, it generates ideas or hypothesis for later quantitative research. Qualitative research is used to gain an in-depth understanding of human behaviour, experience, attitudes, intentions, and motivations, on the basis of observation and interpretation, to find out the way people think and feel. Quantitative research is a form of research that relies on the methods of natural sciences, which produces numerical data and hard facts.

The research is also known as empirical research as it can be accurately and precisely measured. The data collected by the researcher can be divided into categories or put into rank, or it can be measured in terms of units of measurement. The differences between qualitative and quantitative research are provided can be drawn clearly on the following grounds:.

An ideal research is one, which is conducted by considering both the methods, together. Although, there are some particular areas which require, only one type of research which mainly depends on the information required by the researcher. Your email address will not be published. Research is used to test a theory and ultimately support or reject it. Experiments typically yield quantitative data, as they are concerned with measuring things.

However, other research methods, such as controlled observations and questionnaires can produce both quantitative information. For example, a rating scale or closed questions on a questionnaire would generate quantitative data as these produce either numerical data or data that can be put into categories e.

Experimental methods limit the possible ways in which a research participant can react to and express appropriate social behavior. Findings are therefore likely to be context-bound and simply a reflection of the assumptions which the researcher brings to the investigation. Statistics help us turn quantitative data into useful information to help with decision making. We can use statistics to summarise our data, describing patterns, relationships, and connections.

Statistics can be descriptive or inferential. Descriptive statistics help us to summarise our data whereas inferential statistics are used to identify statistically significant differences between groups of data such as intervention and control groups in a randomised control study.

Quantitative experiments do not take place in natural settings. In addition, they do not allow participants to explain their choices or the meaning of the questions may have for those participants Carr, Poor knowledge of the application of statistical analysis may negatively affect analysis and subsequent interpretation Black, Variability of data quantity: Large sample sizes are needed for more accurate analysis.

Small scale quantitative studies may be less reliable because of the low quantity of data Denscombe, This also affects the ability to generalize study findings to wider populations. The researcher might miss observing phenomena because of focus on theory or hypothesis testing rather than on the theory of hypothesis generation.

Sophisticated software removes much of the need for prolonged data analysis, especially with large volumes of data involved Antonius, Quantitative data is based on measured values and can be checked by others because numerical data is less open to ambiguities of interpretation. Hypotheses can also be tested because of the used of statistical analysis Antonius, Doing quantitative research in the social sciences: An integrated approach to research design, measurement and statistics.

Using thematic analysis in psychology. Qualitative Research in Psychology , 3, 77— The strengths and weaknesses of quantitative and qualitative research: Journal of advanced nursing, 20 4 , Within market research, this may include, but is not limited to:. A quantitative research technique will be used where a stable and representative measurement of the market is required. Stability is important in any instance where research is to be repeated and in cases where there is an interest in detecting changes over time.

Due to the nature of survey sampling , researchers need to be mindful of margins-of-error and their implications for reporting. Increasing a sample size is often a good way to narrow the level of error. Representativeness becomes very important where market research is to be used to support business decision-making. Quantitative research conducted on a random-sampling basis is well suited to this task.

Sufficiently large, quantitative samples are able to cover a wide and therefore representative cross-section of the market. For example, quantitative research may tell you that Advert A is recalled more often than Advert B, but how does A work as an advert and why is it more effective than B?

This is when qualitative research is needed. Qualitative research is often concerned with empathizing with the customer and establishing the meanings he or she attaches to products, brands and other marketing objects. Another focus is motivation: For example, why does one product meet customer needs over another — and what are these needs that are being met?

Qualitative research is conducted amongst smaller samples compared to quantitative research. In the case of attitudes to brands, for example, qualitative research may determine a specific view held about the brand, whereas quantitative research would tell us what proportion holds that view. Each technique has its own specific advantages, depending on the nature of the target audience and the type of information that needs to be collected.

For instance, while techniques such as interviews rely more on direct questioning of research subjects, ethnographic studies are predicated on observation.

Quantitative and qualitative research work in tandem. The qualitative element frequently takes place at the front end of the study, exploring values that need measuring in the subsequent quantitative phase.

In this way, qualitative research can help to improve the usefulness and efficacy of quantitative research studies. Qualitative research may offer a diagnostic understanding of what is wrong, while the quantitative research provides hard data across different respondent groups that can lead to specific recommendations with measures that can be used as controls to determine the effectiveness of actions.

Qualitative research

Main Topics

Privacy Policy

What’s the difference between qualitative and quantitative research? Susan E. DeFranzo September 16, Many times those that undertake a research project often find they are not aware of the differences between Qualitative Research and Quantitative Research methods.

Privacy FAQs

Qualitative Methods Quantitative Methods Methods include focus groups, in-depth interviews, and reviews of documents for types of themes.

About Our Ads

What’s the difference between qualitative and quantitative approaches? Adar Ben-Eliyahu, Ph.D. In the world of research, there are two general approaches to gathering and reporting information: qualitative and quantitative approaches. The qualitative approach to research is focused on understanding a phenomenon from a closer perspective. The differences between qualitative and quantitative research are provided can be drawn clearly on the following grounds: Qualitative research is a method of inquiry that develops understanding on human and social sciences, to find the way people think and feel.

Cookie Info

The main difference between qualitative and quantitative research methods is the approach. With qualitative research methods, you’re starting with a specific observation before . The difference between qualitative and quantitative research is a fundamental distinction within research practice. Below, we outline how "qual" and "quant" data vary, and .