This book offers a comprehensive and rounded view of research as a tool for logical problem-solving. It is built on the philosophical-pragmatic foundation that the value of knowledge and research methodologies lies in their usefulness in engaging with the real world.

Basic Research Methods: An Entry to Social Science Research synthesizes both positivist and non-positivist methodologies. It is for students who are undertaking their first social science research course or their first research project. The techniques are basic ones, but many masters and doctoral research studies use them. From an experiential base, students would be able to build a more advanced conceptual and theoretical understanding of research through further reading and practice.

The book covers both quantitative and qualitative methods. It discusses policy-applied-pure-action model of research, treatment of participatory research as an ethical rather than a methodological issue, inclusion of project evaluation as a type of case study, addition of binary measurement to the standard classification, practical use of Microsoft Excel for analysis of both words and numbers, a building block approach to writing, and the author's own thoughts on application of research.

Real-life examples from different subject areas in Asia are used in this concise textbook, which has been written in an engaging language, adopting the inductive approach.

Quantitative Data

Quantitative data

Even the most basic social science data can be expressed numerically and tested statistically. This understanding sees many areas of qualitative research that historically contained very little quantitative data or analysis (anthropological case studies, for example) now, sometimes, using statistical tests.

A strength of quantitative research is that detailed rules encourage care. The rules get very complicated, but every statistical test has procedures that others can replicate. This provides an intellectual discipline that encourages accuracy. If we pay careful attention to the procedures and rules, the work will be systematic and thorough. Many researchers, including myself, are without a strong mathematical background and find that statistics are difficult. This is not a reason to avoid them; it is a challenge. There is a ...

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