Research Design- Different Types of Research Design

Research Design- Types of Research Design & Different Types of Research Method

Research Design

Nobody can deny the importance of sophisticated research. Research is the process of discovering new knowledge and ideas. Recently, research has become more advanced by skilled and trained researchers. At the present time, researchers conduct the mixed method of research by applying both non-experimental and experimental designs. Usually, there are two types of research design such as experimental and nonexperimental research. Experimental research is divided into many designs including Descriptive, Historical, Correlation, Qualitative and et cetera. On the other hand, experimental research is divided into two methods for example True experimental and Quasi-experimental research methods.

Difference Between Nonexperimental and Experimental Research

Nonexperimental Research Experimental Research
Firstly, Nonexperimental research determines the natural relationship between variables. In contrast, experimental research investigates the cause-and-effect relationship between variables.
Additionally, the researcher does not control the setting of the study. On the other hand, researchers control the setting of the study.
In this research design, researchers do not introduce external variables. In this research design, researchers introduce external variables.
Researchers do not manipulate the independent variable. Nonetheless, the researcher manipulates the independent variable methodically.
For example,  Investigating the perception of the children in the  COVID-19 pandemic. For example, Testing the effect of the COVID-19 vaccine among children.
Usually, Nonexperimental research is both quantitative and qualitative.  Whereas, experimental research is quantitative.
Nonexperimental research is intended to explain the characteristics of the subject including the current situation, comparative position, and prediction. However, experimental research is used to solve the problems, create advanced innovation, and especially to progress in medical science.
Types of Research Design
Research Design Types of Research Design & Different Types of Research Method
Figure 1: Types of Research Design

1. Nonexperimental Research

Nonexperimental research explains the researcher’s observation describing the natural condition of the study phenomenon. The nonexperimental research determines the normal relationship between variables but not intended to identify the cause-and-effect relationship between variables. It only describes relationships between variables without testing causal relationships among them. This research is not involved in the manipulation of the independent variable. Therefore, it does not introduce any external variable, and variables are not manipulated. Researchers do not control the setting of the research.

For example, a researcher wants to investigate the relationship between the awareness of fake news sharing and Brand the trust of Facebook among youth. Here, the researcher wants to determine the relationship between awareness of fake news sharing and Brand trust of Facebook. Actually, it does not indicate the causal relationship between variables.

The nonexperimental research includes the following methods:

  1. Descriptive Research Design
  2. Survey Research
  3. Historical Research
  4. Correlational Research
  5. Qualitative Research
  6. Developmental Research
  7. Observational Research
  8. Secondary Data Analysis Research
  9. Epidemiology Research
  10. Ethnographies Research
Descriptive Research Design

The descriptive research method describes the characteristics and features of existing phenomena at the time of research. It also provides a broad picture of the phenomena to convey a better understanding through the study. The time frame of the study is present. Descriptive research is the foundation of all other types of researches. It does not involve control variables or treatments. However, the correlation between variables is characterized.  There are many types of descriptive research for example Survey research, Correlation research, Developmental research (Longitudinal approach, & Cross-section approach), Normative research, Naturalistic observational research, Comparative research, Data analysis research, Action research, etc. 

For example, a researcher wants to survey the practice of social media-based citizen journalism among students. Based on the topic, the researcher should apply the descriptive research method to explain the feature of the practice of social media-based citizen journalism among students. Another example of the descriptive research design is ” the perception of Malaysia people on the use of social media to spread fake political news”.

Survey Research Design

Survey research examines the relationships and frequency between sociological and psychological variables. It assesses the psychological factors such as beliefs, values, attitudes, prejudices, discriminations, opinions, and preferences.

Examples of the survey research are evaluating the following:

  • Student’s attitudes toward the use of smartphones in the classroom.
  • Teacher’s opinion in conducting online classes
  • The perception of teenagers in the advantage of social media platforms
How to Conduct Survey Research

Any survey research begins with a general (flow) plan that shows the entire process of survey research.

  1. Clarify the purpose of the study
  2. Defining the sample plan
  3. Define a method also part of the interviewing session 

Defining method stage of survey research will determine the answer to the following questions

  • How will the questions be structured?
  • What types of questions will be asked?
  • How will the sample be defined?
  • How will the data be collected?

4. Finally, Coding and scoring

Tools of the Survey Research- Interview

The interview is the basic tool of the survey research design. However, a Face sheet is an essential element to conduct an interview session properly. Face sheet information represents neutral information about the respondent of the study such as age, gender, living place, educational level, income, etc.

Pros of  the Face sheet—Neutral background information
  • First, it helps establish rapport with the respondents or interviewees. For example, where did you study? How many siblings do you have?
  • Secondly, it establishes data frames or characteristics.
Two Types of Questions For Interviewees. 
  • Structured questions in which respondents can give explicit answers.
  • On the other hand, open-ended questions permit the interviewee to give elaborative answers.

Advantages of the Interview 

  • Flexibility in collecting data
  • The interviewer can set the tone and agenda

Disadvantages of the Interview

  • Expensive
  • Lack of anonymity, so responses might not be honest
  • Lack standardized questions
 Process of developing an Interview
  • Firstly, describe the goals of the project.
  • Secondly, select an appropriate sample.
  • thirdly, develop interview questions.
  • Fourthly, train interviewers.
  • Finally, Conduct interviews.
The Ten Essential Commandments of Interviewing 
  1. Do not begin the interview cold.
  2. Remember that you are there to get information.
  3. Be direct.
  4. Dress appropriately.
  5. Find a quiet place to conduct the interview.
  6. If your interviewee doesn’t give a satisfactory answer the first time, don’t give up.
  7. Use a tape recorder.
  8. Make the interviewee a part of the interview.
  9. To be a good interviewer practice more.
  10. Thank interviewees for their help, and ask for questions. 
Advantages and Disadvantages of Survey Research

Advantages of Survey Research design

  • Permits researcher to get a broad picture (good generalization)
  • Efficient data collection
  • Can yield very accurate results

Disadvantages of Survey Research design

  • Bias (Interviewer bias and Interviewee bias)
  • Non-response

Correlational Research Design

Correlation research design describes the relationship between two variables. It identifies the associated factors of the phenomenon that are co-related to one another. It also discovers how connected these factors to each other, and what is the strength of the relationship between variables. The strength of the relationship is measured by a numerical index called the correlation coefficient. The time frame of this research might be present or past and future. Actually, it shows the past or present relationship between variables and offers predictions for the future. It implies that variables share something in common.

For example, a researcher wants to identify the relationship between social media addiction among students and their results in the final exam. Based on the topic, the researcher should use a Correlation research design to identify the relationship between social media addiction among students and their results in the final exam. Another example of the correlation research design is “Influence of Teenager’s Awareness of Fake News Spreading and Perceived Message Trustworthiness towards The Brand Trust of Twitter”.

Correlation Coefficient

The correlation coefficient measures the degree of linear relatedness between two variables. There are two types of correlation for example positive correlation and negative correlation. The positive correlation is good, yet the negative correlation is not bad. basically, both positive and negative correlation indicates the direction of relationship nothing else.

The strength of the relationship is indicated by the absolute value of the coefficient. Variance increases when a stronger relationship between variables existed. Varies between –1.00 and +1.00.

Example of the Two Types of Correlation
If X… And Y… So, correlation is Example
Increases in value Increases in value Positive or direct For example, height gets (X), more one weighs (Y).
Decreases in value Decreases in value Positive or direct For example, the less time study makes (X), the lower result of the exam (Y).
Increases in value Decreases in value Negative or inverse For example, the more time on Facebook (X), the lower result of the exam (Y).
Decreases in value

 

Increases in value

 

Negative or inverse

 

For example, the less time one Facebook (X), the good result on the test (Y).
Historical Research

Historical research investigates the past event and establishes the present concept of the event. It also describes the past fact of the event that affects the current situation. The objective of the historical research method is to collect and evidence from the past event to develop a fact that defends or refutes the hypothesis. Historical research is another term of historiography.

For example, researchers desire to identify the historical progress of women’s education in Malaysia. So, the historical research design will be the option to conduct the research.

Qualitative Research

Qualitative research design examines human behavior in the social, political, and cultural context in which it occurs. The qualitative research method is part of nonexperimental research therefore it never test the cause and effect relationship between variables. The researcher applies different paradigms and tools to conduct qualitative research. The most important tools of qualitative research are interviews, ethnography, case studies, and ethnography. It provides nonnumerical qualitative data that is also known as primary data. In qualitative research, the researchers focus on the content of informants rather than the frequency of particular content.  Here, the informant is the interviewees or people who been interviewed by the researcher. The time frame is present and past.

For example, a researcher desires to identify the effectiveness of the government policy to educate all girl-children. So, he or she will implement the qualitative research method to identify the effectiveness of the government policy to educate all girl-children in the country.

Experimental Research
  • Tries to discover causal relationships
  • Two types:
  1. True experimental research
  2. Quasi-experimental research

True experimental Research

  • For example, Comparing two different techniques

Quasi-Experimental Research

  • For example, Participants are preassigned to groups
  • Useful when the researcher cannot manipulate variables.
When to use what research design

Research design cheat sheet

The research design cheat sheet attached below will

Research design
Figure 2: Research Design Cheat Sheet
Basis Research Design and Applied Research Design

Basic research has no instant execution to the world. Researchers apply this research design to expand the knowledge of certain phenomena. Pure research is another name of basic research. For example, a study looking at how the online class during the COVID-19 pandemic increases depression among students. Researchers are intended to expand knowledge by this study or research; it has no instant application to society.

Applied research has immediate execution or application to the world. Researchers use this research to solve the problem. Therefore, it has an immediate practical use to resolve the problem or answer the question. For example, the research to invent the COVID-19 vaccine is an instance of applied research; because it has immediate application to the world.

 

Sample of Questionnaires: Sample of Survey Questions in Research

Sample of Questionnaires

The sample of questionnaires has been collected from University Putra Malaysia. New researchers will get a concept on how to create a survey questionnaire. This sample of questionnaires represents an example of questionnaires.

The author has uploaded some different samples of questionnaires and set download links here so that readers download the pdf form. This sample of questionnaires might provide a better level of understanding for the new researchers.

Sample of Questionnaires Download Link
  1. Sample of Questionnaire 
  2. Sample of Questionnaire
  3. Sample of questionnaire
Sample of Questionnaires

Dear respondent,

We are KOM3431 Communication Research Students from the Department of Communication, Faculty of Modern Languages, and Communication. We are currently doing our individual assignment on data analysis. We wish to collect some information about your awareness of obesity.

You are invited to participate in this survey in which your insight and information are valuable for us to strategize the health communication campaign to be more effective. We greatly appreciate your help in providing us your honest answers to the questions below. I reassure you that the information gathered in this survey will only be used for event purposes and will be kept confidential.

Thank you.

SECTION A: DEMOGRAPHIC
1 Ethnic : □ Malay □ Indian
2 Gender : □ Chinese □ Other: ______________
□ Male □ Female
3 Age : Below 15 31–35
15–19 36–40
20–25 41–45
26–30 Above 45

 

  1. Which written language(s) do you understand? (Choose whichever relevant)
Malay English
Chinese Tamil

 

  1. Which spoken language do you prefer? (Choose one (1) ONLY)
Malay English
Mandarin Tamil
Cantonese Hakka
Hokkien Other: ___________
SECTION B: MEDIA CONSUMPTION
  1. What are the main sources you use the most to obtain health information? (Choose minimum one (1) answer and maximum three (3) answers)
Newspaper Internet
Magazine Facebook
Television Instagram
Radio Twitter
WeChat Other: ______________

 

  1. If you have selected a newspaper as one of the sources for obtaining information pertaining to health, which newspaper vehicle do you read the most? (Choose one (1) ONLY)
Sin Chew Daily Guang Hwa Daily
China Press Oriental Daily
Nanyang Siang Pau The Star
Utusan Malaysia Berita Harian
Kosma! News StraitTime
Guang Ming Daily Other: ______________
SECTION C: MEDIA PREFERENCE
  1. Do you watch local television (TV) station(s)?
  • Yes (Proceed to Q2)
  • No (Proceed to Q4)
  1. How many hours of TV do you watch in a day? (Choose one (1) ONLY)
  • Less than 1 hour per day
  • 4-6 hours per day
  • 1-3 hours per day
  • More than 6 hours per day
  1. Which TV channel you watch the most? (Choose one (1) ONLY)
Astro NTV 7
RTM 1 8TV
RTM 2 TV 9
TV 3 Other: ______________

 

  1. Do you listen to the local radio?
  • Yes (Proceed to Q5)
  • No (Proceed to Q7)
  1. How many hours of local radio station do you listen in a day? (Choose one (1) ONLY)
  • Less than 1 hour per day
  • 1-3 hours per day
  • 4-6 hours per day
  • More than 6 hours per day
  1. Which local radio station you listen to the most? (Choose one (1) ONLY)
One FM Hitz.FM
988 FM Fly FM
Melody FM Lite FM
MY FM Mix FM
Ai FM Era FM
Red FM Hot FM
Sinar FM Other: ______________

 

  1. Which social media do you use the most? (Choose one (1) ONLY)
Facebook Twitter
Instagram WeChat
WhatsApp Other: ______________

SECTION DAwareness about Obesity

Tick (✓) the spaces provided to indicate your level of agreement with the statements below.

I. Problem Recognition
No Statements Strongly

Disagree/

1

2 3 4 Strongly

Agree/

5

1 Obesity is becoming an increasingly large problem in my community.
2 There is an urgent need to solve the obesity problem in my community.
3 There is much room for local authorities and the government to improve the policies in controlling obesity in Malaysia.
4 I believe the prevention of obesity is very important.
II. Constraint Recognition
No Statements Strongly

Disagree/

1

2 3 4 Strongly

Agree/5

1 I am not able to do anything to solve the obesity problem in my community.
2 My efforts to combat the obesity problem in my community is pointless.
3 I do not see any points in trying to encourage my community members to control their weights.
4 I think I could not affect my community members to control their weight and to prevent obesity.
III. Involvement Recognition
No Statements Strongly

Disagree/

1

2 3 4 Strongly

Agree/

5

1 I am concerned that overweight is affecting my life.
2 I believe obesity could affect my health.
3 I have a strong opinion about obesity.
4 I feel that obesity affects me personally.

– – End of Survey Questionnaire – –

Thank you for answering.