Qualitative and Quantitative Research Differences Research Paper

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Discussion of the Differences Between Quantitative and Qualitative Research

Q1. How does a research problem/question guide the determination to conduct a quantitative versus a qualitative research study?

In general, qualitative research is exploratory in nature and seeks to understand a particular phenomenon from a particular subject’s perspective (McLeod, 2017). It is open-ended in its focus and the researcher has no predetermined conclusions before embarking upon the study. As a result, it focuses on a small rather than a large population. In stark contrast, a quantitative study seeks to understand a phenomenon in an objective fashion that is generalizable to a large population (McLeod, 2017). It is often framed in the form of a predetermined hypothesis and is narrow in its focus.

Q2. Discuss the value of using a conceptual framework or theory (grand or mid-range) to guide a quantitative research study. Address the debate of the appropriateness of using of a conceptual framework or theory to guide a qualitative research study.

Within the framework of nursing research in particular, it is not unusual to use a nursing theory to frame the structure of a quantitative study, particularly to narrow a hypothesis and build upon previous research (Thompson, 2017).

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The risk is using a theory which is overly theoretical in its approach for a data-driven study. Similarly, even though qualitative research is more open-ended, it can still be useful to use a theory or an operational definition of caring, self-care, or another nursing concept to focus the responses of participants to a greater degree.

Q3. What specific types of research designs are used in quantitative research? What specific types of designs are used in qualitative research?

Quantitative research designs such as cross-sectional (comparing different populations), cohort (following a population united by a similar characteristic), longitudinal (for an extended period of time) or descriptive research studies are all driven by an attempt to answer a particular research question (Labaree, 2018). Qualitative designs include phenomenological (studying a particular phenomenon in a general fashion), case studies (focusing on a single person or group), ethnographies (study of a particular culture), or grounded theory approaches (creating a theory after doing inductive research) (Labaree, 2018). Unlike quantitative research, qualitative research designs are not designed to answer a specific, limited, and enclosed question.

Q4. What are differences in determining sample size between quantitative and qualitative research studies?

Quantitative research studies….....

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Labaree, R. (2018). Organizing your social sciences research paper: Types of research designs. USC. Retrieved from: https://libguides.usc.edu/writingguide/researchdesigns

McLeod, S. A. (2017). Qualitative vs. quantitative research. Simply Psychology. Retrieved from: https://www.simplypsychology.org/qualitative-quantitative.html

Thompson, C. (2017). How to use a theory to frame your research. Nursing Education Expert. Retrieved from: https://nursingeducationexpert.com/theory-frame-research/

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