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Qualitative Research

by Tanja Tuulikki Välisalo last modified Mar 09, 2010 02:34 PM


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Qualitative research enables you to increase the overall understanding of the quality, characteristics and meanings of your research object or topic.

You can use various research methods. A common feature of these methods is an emphasis on points of view of expressions and language, and your research object´s surroundings, backgrounds, aims and meanings.

Qualitative research and quantitative research form a methodological pair. There is a clearly defined difference between qualitative and quantitative analysis.The aim of quantitative research is to describe and interpret an object statistically with numbers. You can use both strategies to complement each other in one research project or to act as separate analyses of a single research topic. While either qualitative or quantitative methods directly form the basis of most methods of analysis, a mid-way point between qualitative and quantitative methods applies to several methods of analysis. Whether or not you decide to combine qualitative and quantitative methods in your study depends on the aims of your study and your philosophical position.

Read more on qualitative research from the links below:

Qualitative research. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

Trochim, William M., 2006. Qualitative Measures. The Research Methods Knowledge Base, 2nd Edition.

Shuttleworth, Martyn, 2008. Qualitative research design. Experiment Resources.

Walker, Rob, 2004. Getting and analysing qualitative data. The PREST training resources. Commonwealth of Learning. (pdf)

Read what is written in Data Analysis on qualitative analysis.