Different research designs can be conveniently described if we categorize them as: 1. Research Design in Case of Exploratory Research Studies 2. Research Design in Case of Descriptive and Diagnostic Research Studies 3. Research Design in Case of Hypothesis-Testing Research Studies.
1. Research Design in Case of Exploratory Research Studies:
Exploratory research studies are also termed as formulative research studies. The main purpose of such studies is that of formulating a problem for more precise investigation or of developing the working hypotheses from an operational point of view.
The major emphasis in such studies is on the discovery of ideas and insights. As such the research design appropriate for such studies must be flexible enough to provide opportunity for considering different aspects of a problem under study.
In built flexibility in research design is needed because the research problem, broadly defined initially, is transformed into one with more precise meaning in exploratory studies, which infact may necessitate changes in the research procedure for gathering relevant data.
Generally, the following three methods in the context of research design for such studies are talked about:
(a) The survey of concerned literature;
(b) The experience survey, and
(c) The analysis of ‘insight-stimulating’ examples.
2. Research Design in Case of Descriptive and Diagnostic Research Studies:
Descriptive research studies are those studies which are concerned with describing the characteristics of a particular individual, or of a group, whereas diagnostic research studies determine the frequency with which something occur or its association with something else.
The studies concerning whether certain variables are associated are examples of diagnostic research studies. As against this, studies concerned with specific predictions, with narration of facts and characteristics concerning individual group or situation are all examples of descriptive research studies.
Most of the social research comes under this category. From the point of view of the research design, the descriptive as well as diagnostic studies share common requirement and as such we may group together these two types of research studies.
In descriptive as well as in diagnostic studies, the researcher must be able to define clearly, what he wants to measure and must find adequate methods for measuring it along with a clear cut definition of ‘population’ he wants to study. Since the aim to obtain complete and accurate information in the said studies, the procedure to be used must be carefully planned.
The research design must make enough provision for protection against bias and must maximize reliability, with due concern for the economical completion of the research study.
The design in such studies must be rigid and not flexible and must focus attention on the following:
(a) Formulation the objective of the study (what the study is about and why is it being made?)
(b) Designing the methods of data collection (what techniques of gathering data will be adopted?)
(c) Selecting the sample (how much material will be needed?)
(d) Collecting the data (where can the require data be found and with what time period should the data be related?)
(e) Processing and analysing the data.
(f) Reporting the findings.
3. Research Design in Case of Hypothesis-Research Studies:
Hypothesis-testing research studies (generally known as experimental studies) are those where the researcher test the hypotheses of causal relationship between variable. Such studies require procedures that will not only reduce bias and increase reliability, but will permit drawing inferences about causality.
Usually experiments meet this requirement. Hence, when we talk of research design in such studies, we often mean the design of experiments. Today, the experiment designs are being used in researches relating to phenomena of several disciplines. Since experiments designs originated in the context of agricultural operations, we still use, through in a technical sense, several terms of agricultural (such as treatments, yield, plot, block etc.,) in experiment designs.
“Many a time management is not convinced about the utility of research and regards it as an unnecessary activity over which no found should be spend”.
The advance all progress is born of inquiry. Doubt it often better than overconfidence, for it heads to inquiry, and inquiry leads to invention is famous Hudson maxim in content of which the significance of research can be understood by increased amount of research and make progress possible.
Research inculcates scientific and inductive thinking and it promotes the development of logical habits of thinking and organisation.
The role of research in several fields of applied economics, whether selected to business or to the economy as a whole, has greatly increased in modern times. The increasingly complex nature of business and government has focused attention on the use of research in solving operational problem. Research as on aid to economic policy, has gained added importance both for government and business.
In addition to what has been stated the significance of research can also be understood keeping in view the following points:
(a) The student who is to write a master’s of Ph.D. thesis research may mean careerism or a way to attain a Right position in the social structure.
(b) To professionals in research methodology, research may mean a source of livelihood.
(c) To philosophers and thinkers, research may mean the outlet for new ideas and insights.
(d) To literary men and women, research may mean the development of new styles and creative work.
(e) To analysis and intellectuals, research may mean the generalisation of new theories.
Thus research is the fountain of knowledge for the sake of knowledge and in importance source of providing guidelines for solving different business, governmental and social problems. It is a sort of formal training which enables one to understand the new development in one’s field in a better way.