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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

18MBA23 - RESEARCH METHODOLOGY


Course Objectives:

• The primary objective of this course is to develop a research orientation among


the students and to acquaint them with fundamentals of research methods.
Specifically, the objective of the course is to introduce them to the basic concepts
used in research, specifically social science research methods and its approach to
business decision making. It includes discussions on sampling techniques, research
designs and techniques of analysis.
Teaching objectives:

• To develop understanding of the basic framework of research process.


• To develop an understanding of the basic components of the research design along with
the various research designs and techniques.
• To develop an insight into the fundamental concepts of research and its methodologies
• To equip the students with various research analytical tools used in business research so
as to organize and conduct research in a more appropriate manner
• To identify various sources of information for literature review and data collection.
• To gain an insight into the applications of research methods To equip the students with
the right style to facilitate them in developing research proposals and writing research
reports / thesis.
Learning Outcomes:
At the end of the course, the students will be able to:

1. Understand the various research techniques, approaches and strategies appropriate to


business
2. Apply a range of quantitative and qualitative research techniques to business and/or
management problems
3. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of data analysis, interpretation and report
writing
4. Develop necessary critical thinking skills in order to evaluate different research
approaches in business.
Course Contents:
Unit 1 - Business Research: Meaning, types, process of research. Management problem.
Defining the research problem. Research design. Formulating the research Hypothesis.
Sampling design. Data Collection, data analysis and interpretation. Developing the research
proposals. Research Application in business decisions. Features of good research study.
Unit 2 - Research Design: Meaning and Significance of research design. Types of Business
Research Design: Exploratory and Conclusive Research Design. Exploratory Research:
Meaning, purpose, methods –secondary resource analysis, comprehensive case methods,
expert opinion survey, focus group discussions. Conclusive research Design - Descriptive

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Research - Meaning, Types – cross sectional studies and longitudinal studies. Experimental
research design – Meaning and classification of experimental designs- Pre experimental
design, Quasi-experimental design, True experimental design, statistical experimental design.
Unit 3 – Sampling: Concepts. Types of Sampling - Probability Sampling (simple random
sampling, systematic sampling, stratified random sampling, cluster sampling). Non Probability
Sampling (convenience sampling, judgemental sampling, snowball sampling- quota
sampling). Errors in sampling
Unit 4 - Data Collection and Measurement Scales: Data Collection: Primary and Secondary
data. Primary data collection methods - Observations, survey, Interview and Questionnaire,
Qualitative Techniques of data collection. Secondary data -Sources – advantages and
disadvantages. Questionnaire design – Meaning - process of designing questionnaire.
Measurement and Scaling Techniques: Basic measurement scales-Nominal scale, Ordinal
scale, Interval scale, Ratio scale. Attitude measurement scale - Likert’s Scale, Semantic
Differential Scale, Thurstone scale, Multi-Dimensional Scaling.
Unit 5 - Hypothesis Sampling: Hypothesis: Meaning, Types, characteristics, source,
Formulation of Hypothesis, Errors in Hypothesis. Parametric and Non Parametric Test: T-Test,
Z-Test, F-Test, U-Test, K-W Test (problems on all tests). Statistical Analysis: Bivarate Analysis
(Chi-Square only), Multivariate Analysis (only theory). ANOVA: One- Way and Two Way
Classification. (Theory Only).
Unit 6 - Data Analysis and Report Writing: Preparing the Data for Analysis: Editing, Coding,
Classification, Tabulation, Validation, Analysis and Interpretation. Report writing and
presentation of results: Importance of report writing, types of research report, report
structure, guidelines for effective documentation.
Reference:
1. Research Methodology - C R Kothari, Vishwa Prakashan, 2002
2. Business Research Methods. Donald R. Cooper & Pamela s Schindler, TMH/9e/2007

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Unit 1 - Business Research


Meaning, types, process of research. Management problem. Defining the research problem.
Formulating the research Hypothesis. Developing the research proposals. Research design
formulation. Sampling design. Data Collection, data analysis and interpretation. Research
Application in business decisions. Features of good research study.

Business Research

Meaning: “Research is a systematic inquiry to describe, explain, predict and control the
observed phenomenon. Research involves inductive and deductive methods.”

Research may be very broadly defined as systematic gathering of data and information and
its analysis for advancement of knowledge in any subject.

Research refers to the systematic method consisting of articulating the problem, formulating
a hypothesis, collecting the facts or data, analyzing the facts and reaching certain conclusions
either in the form of solutions(s) towards the concerned problem or in certain generalizations
for some theoretical formulation.

In short, research is the search for knowledge through objective and systematic method of
finding solution to a problem. Research is conducted with a purpose to understand:

• What do organizations or businesses really want to find out?


• What are the processes that need to be followed to chase the idea?
• What are the arguments that need to be built around a concept?
• What is the evidence that will be required that people believe in the idea or concept?

Methods of research

1. Inductive Method of Research: Inductive research methods are used to analyze the
observed phenomenon. Inductive research approaches are associated with qualitative
research.
2. Deductive method of Research: Deductive methods are used to verify the observed
phenomenon. Deductive methods are more commonly associated with quantitative
research.

Characteristics of Research

1. Research is systematic in approach. Rules and procedures are an integral part of research
that set the objective of a research process.
2. Research is based on logical reasoning and involves both inductive and deductive
methods.
3. The data that is derived is in real time and pertains to actual observations.
4. An in-depth analysis of all the data collected from research is conducted.

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5. Research is analytical in nature and creates a path for generating new questions.
6. Accuracy is one of the important character of research, the information that is obtained
while conducting the research should be accurate and true to its nature.

Objective of Research in Research Methodology

1. To gain familiarity with a phenomenon or to achieve new insights into it. (exploratory
or formulative research studies)
2. To describe accurately the characteristics of a particular individual, situation or a
3. group. (descriptive research)
4. To determine the frequency with which something occurs or with which it is
associated with something else. (studies with this object known as diagnostic
research)
5. To test a hypothesis of a causal relationship between variables. (such studies are
known as hypothesis testing research)

Definition of Research Method:

The techniques and procedure, that are applied during the course of studying research
problem are known as the research method. It encompasses both qualitative and quantitative
method of performing research operations, such as survey, case study, interview,
questionnaire, observation, etc.

Definition of Research Methodology: Research Methodology is the study of methods so as


to solve the research problem. It is the science of learning the way research should be
performed systematically. It refers to the rigorous analysis of the methods applied and also
clarifies the reason for using a particular method or technique.

Difference between Research Methods and Research Methodology

Research Methods Research Methodology


Research Method implies the Research methodology signifies way to
methods employed by the researcher efficiently solving research problems.
to conduct research.
Research Method indicates a Research methodology is a science of
behaviour or an instrument used in understanding, how research is
the selection and construction of the performed methodically.
research technique.
Research Method involves carrying Research methodology involves study
out experiment, test, surveys and so of different techniques which can be
on. utilized in the performance of
experiment, test, surveys etc.

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Research Method comprises of Research methodology indicates an


different investigation techniques. entire strategy towards achievement of
objective.
The objective of Research Method is The objective of Research methodology
to discover solution to research is to apply correct procedures so as to
problem. determine solutions.

Types of Research

1. Applied versus Fundamental Research


2. Descriptive versus Analytical Research
3. Qualitative versus Quantitative Research
4. Conceptual versus Empirical Research

1. Applied Research Vs. Basic Research


Applied Research:
• Applied research focuses on analyzing and solving real-life problems.
• This type of research refers to the study that helps solve practical problems using
scientific methods.
• This research plays an important role in solving issues that impact the overall well-
being of humans.
For example, finding a specific cure for a disease.
Basic Research:
• Basic research is mostly conducted to enhance knowledge and covers fundamental
aspects of research.
• The main motivation of this research is knowledge expansion and is a non-
commercial research
• It doesn’t facilitate in creating or inventing anything.
For example, an experiment is a good example of basic research.
• Future research is the systematic study of possible future conditions.
• It includes analysis of how those conditions might change as a result of the
implementation of policies and actions, and the consequences of these policies
and actions.

2. Descriptive Research vs. Analytical Research


Descriptive Research
• It includes surveys and fact-finding enquiries of different kinds.
• It tries to discover answers to the questions who, what, when and sometimes how.
• In social science and business research we quite often use the term Ex post facto
research for descriptive research studies.

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• Here the research is conducted to understand the exact nature of the problem to
find out relevant solutions.
For e.g Revenue of a car company has decreased by 12% in the last year. The
following could be the probable causes: There is no optimum production, poor
quality of a product, no advertising, economic conditions etc.

Analytical Research:
• The researcher analyses the available data or facts to critically evaluate the
problem. It is an attempt to discover cause and therefore compare.
• In analytical research, the researcher has no control over variables

3. Qualitative Research Vs. Quantitative Research

Qualitative Research: Qualitative research is a process that is about inquiry or investigation.

• It helps in-depth understanding of the problems or issues in their natural settings.


• This is a non- statistical research method.
• This research is heavily dependent on the experience of the researchers and the
questions used to probe the sample.
• The sample size is usually restricted to 6-10 people in a sample.
• Open-ended questions are asked in a manner that one question leads to another. T
• he purpose of asking open-ended questions is to gather as much information as
possible from the sample.

The methods used in qualitative research are as follows;

• One-to-one interview
• Focus groups
• Ethnographic Research
• Content/ Text Analysis
• Case study research

Quantitative Research: Quantitative research is a structured way of collecting data and


analyzing it to draw conclusions. Quantitative data is all about numbers.

• This research method uses a computational, statistical and similar method to


collect and analyze data.
• Quantitative research involves a larger population as more number of people
means more data to be analyzed to obtain accurate results.

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• This type of research method uses close-ended questions because, in quantitative


research, the researchers are typically looking at measuring the extent and
gathering guaranteed or authentic statistical data.

The methods used in quantitative research are as follows;

• Online surveys, questionnaires and polls are preferable data collection tools used
in quantitative research.
• The other methods are using online surveys, data collection through mobile
phones, emails or online polls.
4. Conceptual Research Vs. Empirical Research

Conceptual Research:

• Conceptual research is related to some abstract idea(s) or theory.


• It is generally used by philosophers, researchers and thinkers to develop new
concepts or to reinterpret existing ones.

Empirical Research:

• The empirical research relies on experience or involves observation alone, often


without due regard for system and theory.
• It is a data-based research, with analyses coming up with conclusions, which are
capable of being verified by observation or experiment.

Research Design

Definition: A research design is a framework or blueprint for conducting the a research


project. It is the set of methods and procedures used in collecting and analyzing measures of
the variables specified in the research problem.

Types of Research Design

There are many ways to classify research designs. They are;

1. Exporatory Research Design


2. Descriptive Research Design
3. Experimental or Causal Research Design

Research Process

The research process involves identifying, locating, assessing and analyzing the information
needed to support the research question. The Steps involved in Research Process in Research
Methodology are as follows;

a. Formulating the Research Problem;

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b. Extensive Literature Survey;

c. Developing the Hypothesis;

d. Preparing the Research Design;

e. Determining Sample Design;

f. Collecting the Data;

g. Execution of the Project;

h. Analysis of Data;

i. Hypothesis Testing,

j. Generalizations and Interpretation,

k. Preparation of the Report

a. Formulating the Research Problem: This task of formulating or defining a research


problem is a step of greatest importance in the entire research process. The problem to
be investigated must be defined clearly. The formulation of a research problem
constitutes the first step in a scientific enquiry. Basically two steps are involved in
formulating the research problem i.e, Understanding the problem thoroughly and
Rephrasing the same into meaningful terms from an analytical point of view.

b. Extensive literature survey: Once the problem is formulated, a brief summary of it


should be written down and an extensive literature survey connected with the problem
should be conducted. For this purpose, the abstracting and indexing journals and
published or unpublished bibliographies have to be undertaken. The sources to be
referred are academic journals, conference proceedings, government reports, books
etc., must be referred depending on the nature of the problem. In this process, it should
be remembered that one source will lead to another. The earlier studies, if any, which
are similar to the study in and should be carefully studied.
c. Development of Working Hypotheses: After extensive literature survey, researcher
should state in clear terms the working hypothesis or hypotheses. Working hypothesis is
tentative assumption made in order to draw out and test its logical or empirical
consequences. As such the manner in which research hypotheses are developed is
particularly important since they provide the focal point for research. In most types of
research, the development of working hypothesis plays an important role. Hypothesis
should be very specific and limited to the piece of research in hand because it has to be
tested.

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d. Preparing the Research Design: After formulating the research problem, next stage is to
prepare a research design. It is a blue print on how to conduct research. The conceptual
structure has to be developed in order to facilitate the research in a systematic manner.
A suitable research design will minimize bias and maximize the reliability of the data
collected and analyses.

The research design may be Exploratory Research, Descriptive or Experimental or Causal


Research Designs. The preparation of the research design, should consider the following;

• The means of obtaining the information


• The availability and skills of the researcher
• Explanation of the way in which selected means of obtaining information will be
organized and the reasoning leading to the selection
• The time limit for research
• The cost factor relating to research.
e. Determining sample design: Sample Design indicates the selection of sample. A sample
design is a definite plan determined before any data are actually collected for obtaining
a sample from a given population. Samples can be either probability samples or non-
probability samples.
• With probability samples each element has an equal chance of being included in the
sample. Probability samples are those based on simple random sampling, systematic
sampling,stratified sampling, cluster/area sampling.
• Non-probability samples are those based on convenience sampling, judgment
sampling and quota sampling techniques.
f. Data Collection: Data collection is very crucial in research. There are 2 types of data .
• Primary Data: Primary data can be collected either through experiment or through
survey using questionnaires and interview methods.
• Secondary Data: Secondary data can be sourced from journals, magazines, books,
etc.
g. Data Analysis: The collected raw data has to be edited, tabulated and coded before
subjecting it to through coding, tabulation and then drawing statistical inferences using
appropriate statistical tools and software.
h. Testing of the Hypothesis: This step indicates to the researcher whether to accept the
null hypothesis or to reject the null hypothesis so formulated at the beginning of the
research process. Hypothesis testing will result in either accepting the null hypothesis or
in rejecting it. Various tests, such as Chi square test, t-test, F-test, have been developed
by statisticians for the purpose. The hypotheses may be tested through the use of one
or more of such tests, depending upon the nature and object of research inquiry.
i. Generalizations and interpretation: If a hypothesis is tested and upheld several times,
it maybe possible for the researcher to arrive at generalization, i.e., to build a theory. If
the researcher had no hypothesis to start with, he must explain his findings on the basis

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of some theory which is known as interpretation. The process of interpretation may


quite often trigger off new questions which in turn may lead to further researches.
j. Preparation of the Report: Finally, the researcher has to prepare the report on the
research that has been conducted. The layout of the report should be as follows:

The preliminary pages;


The main text
The end matter.
• Preliminary Pages: The preliminary pages of the report consists of Title, Name of
the researcher and the Institution, Year, Acknowledgements, Foreword, Table of
contents, List of tables and illustrations along with page numbers.
• Main Text: The main text provides the complete outline of the research report
along with all details. Title of the research study is repeated at the top of the first
page of the main text and then follows the other details on pages numbered
consecutively, beginning with the second page. Each main section of the report
should begin on a new page. The main text of the report should have the following
sections:
- Introduction
- Statement of findings and recommendations
- The results
- The implications drawn from the results; and
- The summary.
• End Matter: This refers to the end of the report which comprises of Bibliography
of sources referred, appendices in the form enlistings of all technical data such
as questionnaires, sample information, mathematical derivations, etc.

Management Problem: This refers to the issues that are required to be diagnosed as the root
cause of incidents that are posing a hindrance to the normal working of an organisation.
Research methods are used to determine the appropriate resolution steps that needs to be
taken to ensure that the resolutions are implemented safely and effectively in accordance with
change management and management policies and procedures.

Defining a Research Problem: Defining a research problem is the foundation of any research
method and experimental design. It is one of the first statements made in any research paper
as well as defining the research area.

Operational Definition of a Research Problem: Operationalization indicates the exact


definitions of the variables and the type of scientific measurements used.

Definition of Hypothesis: A hypothesis is a possible answer to a research question. A


hypothesis is a tentative statement about the relationship between two or more variables. It
is a specific, testable prediction of what will be found at the outcome of a research project and
is typically focused on the relationship between two different variables studied in the

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research. It is a presumption on the basis of which a study has to be conducted. This hypothesis
is tested for possible rejection or approval.

In social science research, two forms of hypothesis exists;

1. Null Hypothesis: A neutral statement that can predict that there is no relationship
between two variables.
2. Alternative Hyothesis: A statement which can predict the existence of a relationship
between the variables.
In either case, the variable that is thought to either affect or not affect the outcome is known
as the Independent Variable and the variable that is thought to either be affected or not is
the Dependent Variable.

Formulating a Hypothesis:

Formulating a hypothesis can take place at the very beginning of a research project. The
hypothesis so formulated has to be precise about the defined variables, the nature of the
relationship between that exists between them and how the study has to be conducted.

Sample and Census

In research terminology, a sample is a group of people, objects, or items that are taken from
a larger population for measurement. The sample should be representative of the population
to ensure that the findings can be generalised from the research sample to the population as
a whole.

A census is a study of every unit, everyone or everything, in a population. All items in any field
of inquiry constitute a ‘Universe’ or ‘Population.’ A complete enumeration of all items in the
‘population’ is known as a census inquiry. It can be presumed that in such an inquiry, when all
items are covered, no element of chance is left and highest accuracy is obtained.

Sampling is a process used in statistical analysis in which a predetermined number of


observations are taken from a larger population. The methodology used to sample from a
larger population depends on the type of sampling techniques, i.e. Probability Sampling or
Non-Probability Sampling technique.

Sample Design: A sample design is made up of two elements.

• Sampling method. Sampling method refers to the rules and procedures by which some
elements of the population are included in the sample. Some common sampling methods
are simple random sampling, stratified sampling, convenience sampling, etc.
• Estimator. The estimation process for calculating sample statistics is called the estimator.
The "best" sample design depends on survey objectives and on survey resources.

Data Collection: Data collection is a process of collecting information from all the relevant
sources to find answers to the research problem, test the hypothesis and evaluate the

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outcomes. Data collection methods can be divided into two categories: secondary methods of
data collection and primary methods of data collection.

• Secondary data is a type of data that has already been published in books, newspapers,
magazines, journals, online portals etc.
• Primary data refers to collection of data through the use of questionnaires with open
ended or closed ended questions or through interview process

Data Analysis and Interpretation:

The process of evaluating data using analytical and logical reasoning to examine each
component of the data provided. For this purpose data analysis starts with tabulating, editing
and coding the data, to make it ready for analysis by using statistical tools and software as
planned in the research design.

Data interpretation refers to the implementation of processes through which data is reviewed
for the purpose of arriving at an informed conclusion. The interpretation of data assigns a
meaning to the information analyzed and determines its signification and implications.

Developing the research proposals

Research Proposal: The research proposal is a document that provides a clear and brief
outline of the intended research to assess the originality of the proposed topic. A research
proposal is a document of usually ten to fifteen pages that informs others of a proposed piece
of research. Proposals are evaluated on the basis of cost, potential impact of the proposed
research and on the soundness of the proposed plan for carrying it out.

Contents of a Research Proposal

The contents of a research proposal vary depending on the requirements of evaluation


committee and are generally provided by the evaluation committee or the institution. In
general, the contents are as follows;

A cover page should contain the following;

i. Title of the proposal


ii. Name and affiliation of the researcher (principal investigator) and co-investigators
iii. Institutional affiliation (degree of the investigator and the name of institution where the
study will be performed)
iv. Details of contact such as phone numbers, E-mail id's
v. Lines for signatures of investigators.

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The main contents of the proposal may be presented under the following headings;

a. Introduction
b. Review of literature
c. aims and objectives
d. Research design and methods
e. Ethical considerations
f. Budget
g. Appendices
h. Citations

The steps or the stages in developing a research proposal is as follows;

a. Introduction: This is the 1st step which starts with the Identification of Problem/issues
that needs to be researched. The introduction should be designed to create interest
in the reader about the topic and proposal. This section should indicate the need for
the study, research design and the hypothesis thus formulated. It should also try to
assess the background and significance of the research study in terms of knowledge
of the topic, the gaps existing, line of inquiry and how this research will add to
knowledge, practice and policy.
b. Review of literature: Review of Literature or Preliminary collection of literature
involves looking for relevant literature in the secondary sources of data like jounals,
magazines, websites, etc. to help in developing an initial understanding of the problem
and the identification of relationship amongst variables, the research gaps in the
existing literature. it would help in formulation of hypotheses, Literature should
include supporting data, disagreements and controversies which should help in
formulation of hypothesis. Five ‘C's may be kept in mind while writing a literature
review. A theoretical or a conceptual framework should be considered which includes
the following;
- Identification of variables considered relevant to the study
- Discussing on the direction of relationship between two or more variables
- How and why a certain relationship is expected, these must be supported by
previous research findings.
- A schematic diagram to understand the theoretical relationships.

c. Aims and Objectives: The research purpose (goal or aim) gives a broad indication of
what the researcher wishes to achieve in the research. The hypothesis to be tested
can be the aim of the study. The objectives related to parameters or tools used to
achieve the aim are generally categorised as primary and secondary objectives.

d. Research design and Research Methodology:


- Research Design - The objective is to select a research design that will
appropriately address the research problem within the framework of the

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specific aims of the study. It can be either exploratory or Descriptive in nature.


What is the basis for selection of the population and the sample design that
has been adopted.
- Research Methodology – Here the the researcher identifies how the study will
be conducted by specifying the methods and sources used to conduct the
research must be discussed. Drafting of Research Methodology is based on
the the following questions;

• What is the Unit of Analysis?


• Who are the subjects in the research study?
• What is the sampling technique for the study?
• What is the sample size for the study?
• What statistical techniques would be used for testing hypothesis?
• Which instrument will be used for data collection

e. Data Collection and Analysis: Data can be collected through variety of means that
includes telephonic interviews, personally administered questionnaire, mail
questionnaires, face to face interview, and observation. The researcher is expected to
give a detailed account of the methodology adopted for collection of data, which
include the time frame required for the research. The methodology should be tested
for its validity. If the researcher is planning to acquire data through interviews or
questionnaires, copy of the questions used for the same should be attached as an
annexure with the proposal.

Data Analysis is preceded by tabulating, sorting, editing and coding the data to apply
the appropriate statistical tests using the software based on the research hypothesis.

f. Ethical Considerations: Researchers need to provide adequate information in the


form of obtaining informed consent, protection of the participants' rights and
approval of the institutional review process have to maintained in order to ensure
ethical standards
g. Budget: When the researcher prepares a research budget, he should predict the
expenditure involved from all aspects of the research study and then add an additional
allowance for unpredictable disasters, delays and rising costs. All items in the budget
should be justified.

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h. Appendices: Appendices are documents that support the proposal and application.
The appendices will be specific for each proposal but documents that are usually
required include informed consent form, supporting documents, questionnaires,
measurement tools.
i. Bibliography, References and Citations:
Bibliography: A bibliography is a list of all of the sources used for referring in the
process of research study. In general, a bibliography should include: the authors'
names. the titles of the works. the names and locations of the companies that
published your copies of the sources There is a standard style or format used for
bibliography which may Harvard style or APA (American Psychological
Association)Style or MLA style.
References: This is a list of the the sources you have cited. The references come at the
end of your paper.
Citation: A specific source that you mention in the body of your paper

Research Application in business decisions: Based on the information obtained through the
different business research methods, companies whether new or established can undertake
some essential business decisions such as the following-

• Possibility of the business to survive and succeed in a new geographical region


• Assessment about competitors
• Adopting a suitable market approach for a product

Features of good research study: Every research study, irrespective of its type, should meet
the following some criteria to be classified as good research.

1. The purpose of the research should be clearly defined.


2. The research method should be defined in a clearly with sufficient detail.
3. Any limitations and assumptions made by the researcher during the course of the
study should be clearly highlighted in the research.
4. The research design should be objective in nature so that it provides an easy
understanding about the findings of the research.
5. There should be sufficient data to investigate the research topic and it should be
reliable and valid.
6. The researcher should confine the conclusions to those justified by the data.
7. A good research depends a great deal on the integrity and commitment of the
researcher.

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Questions

3 Marks

1. Define Research.
2. Mention the objectives of research.
3. What is Applied research?
4. What is meant by Conceptual Research?
5. What is meant by Empirical research?
6. What is meant by Quantitative Research?
7. What do you understand by and Qualitative Research.
8. Define a research Problem

7 Marks

1. What do you mean by Research? Explain its significance in Business.


2. Formulate the basic steps in research process
3. Give the application areas of research
4. Briefly describe the formulation of a research problem statement.
5. Distinguish between ‘Research Methods’ and ‘Research Methodology’

10 marks

1. Examine the various types of research.


2. Discuss the steps involved in developing a research proposal
3. Discuss the criteria for a good research study.
4. Discuss the research process in detail.

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Unit 2 - Research Design


Meaning and Significance of research design. Types of Business Research Design:
Exploratory and Conclusive Research Design. Exploratory Research: Meaning, purpose,
methods –secondary resource analysis, comprehensive case methods, expert opinion
survey, focus group discussions. Conclusive research Design - Descriptive Research -
Meaning, Types – cross sectional studies and longitudinal studies. Experimental research
design – Meaning and classification of experimental designs- Pre experimental design,
Quasi-experimental design, True experimental design, statistical experimental design.

Meaning of Research design

The research design is a comprehensive master plan or a blueprint of the research study to be
undertaken which guides the collection and analysis of data.

According to William Zikmund, “Research design is defined as a master plan specifying the
methods and procedures for collection and analyzing the needed information.”

According to Kerlinger, “Research design is the plan, structure, and strategy of investigation
conceived so as to obtain answer to research questions and to control variance.”

Significance of Research Design

Research design is significant because it offers the researcher an opportunity to carry out
different research operations efficiently. The following points justify the significance of
research design;

1. It reduces inaccuracy.
2. Helps to get maximum efficiency and reliability.
3. Eliminates bias and marginal errors.
4. Minimizes wastage of time.
5. Helpful for collecting research materials.
6. Gives an idea regarding the type of resources required in terms of money, manpower,
time, and efforts.
7. Guides the research in the right direction.

Types of Business Research Design: Most research can be divided into three different
categories of research design depending on the nature of the problem and objectives of the
study.

A. Exploratory Research Design


Definition: Exploratory research is defined as a research used to investigate a problem
which is not clearly defined. It is conducted to have a better understanding of the
existing problem, but will not provide conclusive results. For such a research, a

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researcher starts with a general idea and uses this research as a medium to identify
issues, that can be the focus for future research.
For example: Consider a scenario where a juice bar owner feels that increasing the
variety of juices will enable increase in customers, however he is not sure and needs
more information. The owner intends to carry out an exploratory research to find out
and hence decides to do an exploratory research to find out if expanding their variety
on juices will enable him to get more customers or if there is a better idea.
Meaning: Exploratory research is an important part of any marketing or business strategy.
Its focus is on the discovery of ideas and insights as opposed to collecting statistically
accurate data. That is why exploratory research is best suited as the beginning of your
total research plan. It is most commonly used for further defining company issues, areas
for potential growth, alternative courses of action, and prioritizing areas that require
statistical research. The most common example of exploratory research takes place in the
form of open-ended questions. In this type of research there is no need of hypothesis
formulation.
Purpose: The primary objective of exploratory research is to explore a problem to provide
insights into and comprehension for more precise investigation. It focuses on the
discovery of ideas and thoughts. The exploratory research design is suitable for studies
which are flexible enough to provide an opportunity for considering all the aspects of the
problem.
Significance of Exploratory Research Design:
• Exploratory research is carried out when a topic needs to be understood in depth,
especially if it hasn’t been done before.
• The goal of such a research is to explore the problem and enable a researcher to
set a strong foundation for exploring his ideas, choosing the right research design
and finding variables that actually are important for the analysis and not actually
derive a conclusion from it.
Exploratory Research Design – Methods
The following methods are used for conducting exploratory research
a. Interviews: An interview belongs to qualitative research method. An interview with
a subject matter expert can be carried out in person or on telephone which have
open-ended questions to get meaningful information about the topic. For example:

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An interview with an employee can give you more insights to find out the degree of
job satisfaction.
b. Focus groups: Focus group is yet another widely used method in exploratory
research. In such a method a group of people is chosen and are allowed to express
their insights on the topic that is being studied. However when choosing the focus
group, it should be ensured that the focus group members should have a common
background and have comparable experiences.
For example: A focus group helps a research identify the opinions of consumers
if they were to buy a phone. Such a research can help the researcher
understand what the consumer value while buying a phone. It may be screen
size, brand value or even the dimensions. Based on which the organisation can
understand what are consumer buying attitudes, consumer opinions, etc.
c. Observations: Observation research is a type of qualitative observation which is
done to observe a person and draw the finding from their reaction to certain
parameters. In such a research, there is no direct interaction with the subject.
For example: An FMCG company wants to know how it’s consumer react to the
new shape of their product. The researcher observes the customers first
reaction and collects the data, which is then used to draw inferences from the
collective information.

Secondary research methods: Secondary research is gathering information from sources likes
case studies, magazines, newspapers, books, etc.

b. Online research: In today’s world, this is one of the fastest way to gather information
on any topic. A lot of data is readily available on the internet and the researcher can
download it whenever he needs it. An important aspect to be noted for such a research
is the genuineness and authenticity of the source websites that the researcher is
gathering the information from.
For example: A researcher needs to find out what is the percentage of people that
prefer a specific brand phone. The researcher just enters the information he needs
in a search engine and gets multiple links with related information and statistics.
c. Literature research: Literature research is one of the most inexpensive method used
for discovering a hypothesis. There is tremendous amount of information available in
libraries, online sources, or even commercial databases. Sources can include
newspapers, magazines, books from library, documents from government agencies,
specific topic related articles, literature, Annual reports, published statistics from
research organisations and so on.
For example: A company has low sales. It can be easily explored from available
statistics and market literature if the problem is market related or organisation
related or if the topic being studied is regarding financial situation of the country,
then research data can be accessed through government documents or
commercial sources.

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d. Case study research: Case study research can help a researcher with finding more
information through carefully analyzing existing cases which have gone through a
similar problem. Such analysis are very important and critical especially in today’s
business world. The researcher just needs to make sure he analyses the case carefully
in regards to all the variables present in the previous case against his own case. It is
very commonly used by business organisations or social sciences sector or even in the
health sector.
For example: A particular orthopedic surgeon has the highest success rate for
performing knee surgeries. A lot of other hospitals or doctors have taken up this
case to understand and benchmark the method in which this surgeon does the
procedure to increase their success rate.

Steps to conduct an Exploratory Research

1. Identify the problem: A researcher identifies the subject of research and the problem
is addressed by carrying out multiple methods to answer the questions.
2. Create an Assumption statement: When the researcher has found out that there are
no prior studies and the problem is not precisely resolved, the researcher will assume
some criteria to proceed further.
3. Apply the appropriate research Methodology: Once the data has been obtained, the
researcher will continue his study through descriptive investigation. Qualitative
methods are used to further study the subject in detail and find out if the information
is true or not.

Characteristics of Exploratory Research

1. They are not structured studies


2. It is usually low cost, interactive and open ended.
3. To carry out exploratory research, generally there is no prior research done or the
existing ones do not answer the problem precisely enough.
4. It is a time consuming research and has risks associated with it.
5. The researcher will have to go through all the information available from the secondary
sources for the particular study he is doing.
6. This method is very flexible and broad spectrum.
7. The research needs to have a prior idea on the scope and significance of the problem
undertaken.
8. The research should also have a few theories as a reference which can support its
findings as that will make it easier for the researcher to assess it and move ahead in his
study

Advantages of Exploratory research

1. The researcher has a lot of flexibility and can adapt to changes as the research
progresses.

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2. It is usually low cost.


3. It helps lay the foundation of a research, which can lead to further research.
4. It enables the researcher understand at an early stage, if the topic is worth investing
the time and resources and if it is worth pursuing.
5. It can assist other researchers to find out possible causes for the problem, which can
be further studied in detail to find out, which of them is the most likely cause for the
problem.

Disadvantages of Exploratory research

1. This research is not conclusive.


2. It provides only qualitative data where interpretation of such information can be
judgmental and biased.
3. Most of the times, exploratory research involves a smaller sample, hence the results
cannot be accurately interpreted for a generalized population.
4. Many a times, if the data is being collected through secondary research, then there is
a chance of that data being old and is not updated.

B. Descriptive Research Design:

Descriptive research takes up the bulk of survey research (Online or Offline) and is considered
conclusive in nature due to its quantitative nature. Unlike exploratory research, descriptive
research is preplanned and structured in design so the information collected can be
statistically inferred on a population. Descriptive research design covers the characteristics of
people, materials, Scio-economics characteristics such as their age, education, marital status
and income etc. The main idea behind using this type of research is to define an opinion,
attitude or behaviour held by a group of people on a given subject over time.

For example:

An apparel brand that wants to understand the fashion purchasing trends among Bengaluru
buyers will conduct a demographic survey of this region, gather population data and then
conduct descriptive research on this demographic segment. The research will then uncover
details on “what is the purchasing pattern of Bengaluru buyers”, but not cover any
investigative details on “why” the patterns exits. Because for the apparel brand is trying to
enter into this market and therefore understanding the nature of their market is the objective
of the study.

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OR

A speciality food group launching a new range of barbecue rubs would like to understand
what flavors of rubs are favored by different sets of people. To understand the preferred
flavor palette, they conduct a descriptive research study using different methods like
observational methods in supermarkets. By also conducting a survey whilst collecting in-
depth demographic information, offers insights about the preference of different markets..
Conducting a thorough descriptive research helps the organization tweak their business
model and amplify marketing in core markets.

Characteristics of Descriptive Research: The term descriptive research refers to the research
questions, research design and data analysis that would be conducted on that topic. Some
distinctive characteristics of descriptive research are:

• Descriptive research is a quantitative research method that attempts to collect


quantifiable information to be used for statistical analysis of the population sample.
• It is a very popular market research tool that allows to collect and describe the nature
of the demographic segment.
• In descriptive research, none of the variables are influenced in any way.
• Descriptive research is generally a cross-sectional study where different sections
belonging to the same group are studied.
• The data collected and analyzed from descriptive research can then be further
researched using different research techniques.

Applications of Descriptive Research

1. Define respondent characteristics:


2. Measure data trends:
3. Conduct comparisons:
4. Validate existing conditions:
5. Conduct research at different times:

Cross-Sectional Study: Cross-sectional study is defined as an observational study where data


is collected as a whole to study a population at a single point in time to examine the

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relationship between variables of interest. The cross-sectional study offers a snapshot of a


single moment in time but doesn’t consider what happens before or after. The researcher
records information about the participants without changing anything or manipulating the
natural environment in which they exist. The most important feature of a cross-sectional
study is that it can compare different samples at one given point in time or allow the study of
many variables at a given time and can create subsets within the given parameters.

Longitudinal Study: Longitudinal study, like the cross-sectional study, is also an observational
study, in which data is gathered from the same sample repeatedly over an extended period
of time. Longitudinal study can last from a few years to even decades depending on what kind

Differentiate the cross sectional study with the longitudinal study

Cross-sectional study Longitudinal study


• Cross-sectional studies are quick to • Longitudinal studies may vary from a
conduct as compared to longitudinal few years to even decades.
studies.
• A longitudinal study requires a
• A cross-sectional study is conducted at
researcher to revisit participants of the
a given point in time.
study at proper intervals.
• Longitudinal study is conducted with
• Cross-sectional study is conducted with
the same sample over the years.
different samples.
• Longitudinal study can justify cause-
• Cross-sectional studies cannot pin
and-effect relationship.
down cause-and-effect relationship.
• Only one variable is considered to
• Multiple variables can be studied at a
conduct the study.
single point in time.
• Since the study goes on for years
• Cross-sectional study is comparatively longitudinal study tends to get
cheaper. expensive.

C. Causal Research Design

Causal research is quantitative in nature as well as preplanned and structured in design. For
this reason, it is also considered conclusive research. Causal research differs in its attempt to
explain the cause and effect relationship between variables. This is opposed to the
observational style of descriptive research, because it attempts to decipher whether a

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relationship is causal through experimentation. Also, known also as Diagnostic Research


Design. Causal research has two objectives:

a. To understand which variables are the cause and which variables are the effect
b. To determine the nature of the relationship between the causal variables and the
effect to be predicted.

Conclusive research is inclusive of both descriptive and casual research.

D. Experimental Research Design


Definition: An experimental research design is the one where the researchers have
complete control over the extraneous variables & can predict confidently that the
observed effect on the dependable variable is only due to the manipulation of the
independent variable.
Experimental research is any research conducted with a scientific approach, where a set
of variables are kept constant while the other set of variables are being measured as the
subject of experiment. A true experimental research is considered to be successful only
when the researcher establishes cause and effect of a phenomenon and confirms that
a change in the dependent variable is solely due to the manipulation of the independent
variable.
Based on the classification of various conditions and groups, there are three primary
types of experimental research design:
• Pre-experimental research design
• True experimental research design
• Quasi-experimental research design
a. Pre-Experimental Research Design: This is the simplest form of experimental research
design. A group or various groups, are kept under observation after factors are
considered for cause and effect. It is usually conducted to understand whether further
investigation needs to be carried out on the target group/s, due to which it is considered
to be cost-effective.
b. True Experimental Research Design: True experimental research is the most accurate
form of experimental research design as it relies on statistical analysis to prove or

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disprove a hypothesis. It is the only type of Experimental Design that can establish a
cause-effect relationship within a group/s.
c. Quasi-Experimental Research Design: The word “Quasi” indicates resemblance. A quasi-
experimental research design is similar to experimental research but is not exactly that.
The difference between the two is the assignment of a control group. In this research
design, an independent variable is manipulated before calculating the dependent
variable. Quasi-research is used in field settings where random assignment is either
irrelevant or not required.

Advantages of Experimental Research

• Researchers have a stronger hold over variables to obtain desired results.


• Subject or industry is not a criterion for experimental research due to which any
industry can implement it for research purposes.
• Results are extremely specific.
• Once the results are analyzed, they can be applied to various other similar
aspects.
• Cause and effect of a hypothesis can be derived so that researchers can analyze
greater details.
• Experimental research can be used in association with other research methods.

Distinguish Exploratory and Conclusive Research Design

Exploratory Research Design Conclusive Research Design (Descriptive +


Causal)

• In exploratory research design, the • In descriptive research design, the


research is conducted for formulating research describes and explains an
a problem for more clear individual, group or a situation on the
investigation. basis of some numerical quantity.

• Exploratory research is one which • Descriptive research, on the other


aims at providing insights into the hand, aims at describing something,
understanding of the problem faced mainly functions and characteristics.
by the researcher.
• The objective of exploratory research • The objective of descriptive research
design is to discover the ideas and design is to describe characteristics
thoughts. and functions.

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• The overall design is very flexible so • The overall design is very rigid which
that it provides an opportunity to protects against bias and also
consider various aspects of the maximise reliability.
problem.
• The research process is unstructured • The research process is structured

• Non-probability sampling techniques • Probability sampling techniques are


are used Probability sampling used.

• There is no pre-planned statistical • The statistical design for analysis is pre-


design for analysis planned

• The following methods are used for • It uses methods like quantitative
conducting exploratory research- analysis of secondary data, surveys,
Survey of concerning literature panels, observations, interviews,
Experience survey questionnaires, etc.
Analysis of insights stimulatin

Questions

3 Marks
1. What do you understand by the term ‘Research Design’
2. What is the meaning of Quasi experimental design?
3. What is the meaning of statistical experimental design?
4. List out the types of business research design.

7 Marks

1.Explain the significance of a good research design.


2.Write short notes on;
a.Exploratory Research Design
b.Conclusive Research Design
c.Causal / Experimental Research Design
3.Write a brief note on the classification of Experimental research design.
4.Write short notes on how Exploratory Research Design differs for Descriptive Research
Design.
10 marks

1. Is a single research design suitable in all research studies. Discuss


2. Discuss the various Exploratory Research methods employed in business management
research.
***************

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Unit 3: Sampling
Concepts. Types of Sampling - Probability Sampling (simple random sampling, systematic
sampling, stratified random sampling, cluster sampling). Non Probability Sampling
(convenience sampling, judgemental sampling, snowball sampling- quota sampling). Errors
in sampling
A Sample is a subset of the total population. It can be an individual element or a group of
elements selected from the population. it is representative of the population and suitable for
research in terms of cost, convenience and time.

The sample group can be selected based on a probability or a non-probability approach. A


sample usually consists of various units of the population. The size of the sample is
represented by “n”.

Characteristics of a good sample

The sample which satisfies all or few of the following conditions:

1. Representativeness: The samples so selected out of the population are the best
representative of the population under study. Thus, good samples are those who
accurately represent the population. Probability sampling technique yield
representative samples. On measurement terms, the sample must be valid. The
validity of a sample depends upon its accuracy.
2. Accuracy: Accuracy is defined as the degree to which bias is absent from the sample.
An accurate (unbiased) sample is one which exactly represents the population. It is

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free from any influence that causes any differences between sample value and
population value.
3. Size: A good sample must be adequate in size and reliable. The sample size should be
such that the inferences drawn from the sample are accurate to a given level of
confidence to represent the entire population under study.

The size of sample depends on number of factors. Some important among them are:

1. Homogeneity or Heterogeneity of the universe: Selection of sample depends on the


nature of the universe. It says that if the nature of universe is homogeneous then a
small sample will represent the behaviour of entire universe. This will lead to selection
of small sample size rather than a large one. On the other hand, if the universe is
heterogeneous in nature then samples are to be chosen as from each heterogeneous
unit.
2. Number of classes proposed: If a large number of class intervals to be made then the
size of sample should be more because it has to represent the entire universe. In case
of small samples there is the possibility that some samples may not be included.
3. Nature of study: The size of sample also depends on the nature of study. For an
intensive study which may be for a long time, large samples are to be chosen. Similarly,
in case of general studies large number of respondents may be appropriate one but if
the study is of technical in nature then the selection of large number of respondents
may cause difficulty while gathering information.

Sampling: Sampling is the act, process, or technique of selecting a representative part of a


population for the purpose of determining the characteristics of the whole population. In
other words, the process of selecting a sample from a population using special sampling
techniques called sampling.

Population or Universe: The entire aggregation of items from which samples can be drawn is
known as a population. In sampling, the population may refer to the units, from which the
sample is drawn. Population or populations of interest are interchangeable terms. A
population of interest may be the universe of nations or cities. “N” represents the size of the
population.

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Census: A complete study of all the elements present in the population is known as a census.
It is a time consuming and costly process. Limitations include failure in generating a complete
and accurate list of all the members of the population and refusal of the elements to provide
information. The national population census is an example of census survey.

Precision: Precision is a measure of how close an estimate is expected to be, to the true value
of a parameter. Precision is a measure of similarity. Precision is usually expressed in terms of
imprecision and related to the standard error of the estimate.

Bias: Bias is the term refers to how far the average statistic lies from the parameter it is
estimating the error, which arises when estimating a quantity. Errors from chance will cancel
each other out in the long run, those from bias will not. Bias can take different forms.

Steps in Sampling Process

The sampling process can be divided into seven steps as given below:

1. Defining the target population.


2. Specifying the sampling frame.
3. Specifying the sampling unit.
4. Selection of the sampling method.
5. Determination of sample size.
6. Specifying the sampling plan.
7. Selecting the sample.

1. Defining the Target Population:


The target population is defined in terms of element, sampling unit, extent and time
frame. The definition should be in line with the objectives of the research study. A
well-defined population reduces the probability of including the respondents who do
not fit the research objective of the company For ex, if a kitchen appliances firm wants
to conduct a survey to ascertain the demand for its micro ovens, it may define the
population as ‘all women above the age of 20 who cook (assuming that very few men
cook)’.
However, this definition is too broad and will include every household in the country,
in the population that is to be covered by the survey. Therefore, the definition can be

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further refined and defined at the sampling unit level, that, all women above the age
20, who cook and whose monthly household income exceeds Rs.20,000. This reduces
the target population size and makes the research more focused. The population
definition can be refined further by specifying the area from where the researcher has
to draw his sample, that is, households located in Bangalore.
2. Specifying the Sampling Frame: A sampling frame is the list of elements from which
the sample may be drawn. Continuing with the micro oven ex, an ideal sampling frame
would be a database that contains all the households that have a monthly income
above Rs.20,000.
A sampling frame error occurs when the sampling frame does not accurately
represent the total population or when some elements of the population are missing
another drawback in the sampling frame is over –representation. A telephone
directory can be over represented by names/household that have two or more
connections.
3. Specifying the Sampling Unit: A sampling unit is a basic unit that contains a single
element or a group of elements of the population to be sampled. In this case, a
household becomes a sampling unit and all women above the age of 20 years living in
that particular house become the sampling elements.
4. Selection of the Sampling Method: The sampling method outlines the way in which
the sample units are to be selected. The choice of the sampling method is influenced
by the objectives of the business research, availability of financial resources, time
constraints, and the nature of the problem to be investigated.
All sampling methods can be grouped under two distinct heads:
• Probability and Non-Probability sampling.
5. Determination of Sample Size: The sample size plays a crucial role in the sampling
process. Sample size determination is the act of choosing the number of observations
or replicates to include in a statistical sample. Larger sample sizes generally lead to
increased precision when estimating unknown parameters. There are various ways of
classifying the techniques used in determining the sample size.
• In non-probability sampling procedures, the allocation of budget, thumb rules and
number of sub groups to be analysed, importance of the decision, number of

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variables, nature of analysis, incidence rates, and completion rates play a major
role in sample size determination.
• In the case of probability sampling, however, formulae are used to calculate the
sample size after the levels of acceptable error and level of confidence are
specified
6. Specifying the Sampling Plan: In this step, the specifications and decisions regarding
the implementation of the research process are outlined. This step outlines the steps
of the sampling plan.
7. Selecting the Sample: This is the final step in the sampling process, where the actual
selection of the sample elements is carried out. At this stage, it is necessary that the
interviewers stick to the rules outlined for the smooth implementation of the business
research. This step involves implementing the sampling plan to select the sampling
plan to select a sample required for the survey.

Sampling Error: A sampling error is a statistical error that occurs when an analyst does
not select a sample that represents the entire population of data and the results found in
the sample do not represent the results that would be obtained from the entire
population

A sample design is a blueprint or a framework, or road map, that serves as the basis for the
selection of a survey sample and affects many other important aspects of a survey as well. A
sample design is made up of two elements.

Sample Frame: A sampling frame is the source material or device from which a sample is
drawn. One must define a sampling frame that represents the population of interest, from
which a sample is to be drawn. The sampling frame may be identical to the population.

Sample Unit: A sampling unit can refer to any single person, animal, plant, product or ‘thing’
being researched. In the context of market research, a sampling unit is an individual person.
The term sampling unit refers to a singular value within a sample database.

For example, if you were conducting research using a sample of university students, a single
university student would be a sampling unit.

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

Sampling method. Sampling method refers to the rules and procedures by which some
elements of the population are included in the sample. Some common sampling methods are
simple random sampling, stratified sampling and cluster sampling.

Estimator: The estimation process for calculating sample statistics is called the estimator.
Different sampling methods may use different estimators. For example, the formula for
computing a mean score with a simple random sample is different from the formula for
computing a mean score with a stratified sample.

Population parameter. A population parameter is the true value of a population attribute,


such as the population mean. The population mean and standard deviation are two common
parameters. In statistics, Greek symbols usually represent population parameters, such as μ
(mu) for the mean and σ (sigma) for the standard deviation.

For example, the average height of adult women in the United States is a parameter that has
an exact value—we just don’t know what it is!

Sample statistic. A statistic is a characteristic of a sample. If you collect a sample and calculate
the mean and standard deviation, these are sample statistics. A sample statistic is an
estimate, based on sample data of a population parameter to make conclusions about a
population. by using particular sampling techniques. The reason for conducting a sample
survey is to estimate the value of some attribute of a population.

Difference between Population Parameter and Sample statistic

Basis for Comparison Sample Statistic Population Parameter


Meaning Statistic is a measure which Parameter refers to a
describes a fraction of measure which describes
population. population.
Numerical value Variable and Known Fixed and Unknown
Statistical Notation x̄ = Sample Mean μ = Population Mean
s = Sample Standard σ = Population Standard
Deviation Deviation

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p̂ = Sample Proportion P = Population Proportion


x = Data Elements X = Data Elements
n = Size of sample N = Size of Population
r = Correlation coefficient ρ = Correlation coefficient

Types of sampling design in Research Methodology

On the representation basis, the sample designs are basically of two types viz., non-
probability sampling and probability sampling

• Probability sampling is based on the concept of random selection


• Non-Probability sampling is based on the concept of convenience or in other
words ‘non-random’ sampling.

Probability Sampling

Definition: Probability Sampling is a sampling technique in which sample from a larger


population are chosen using a method based on the theory of probability. Probability
sampling uses statistical theory to select randomly, a small group of people (sample) from an
existing large population and then predict that all their responses together will match the
overall population.

For a participant to be considered as a part of probability sample, he/she must be selected


using a random selection. The most important requirement of probability sampling is that
everyone in the population has a known and an equal chance of getting selected.

For example, in a population of 100 people every person would have odds of 1 in 100 for
getting selected. Probability sampling gives the best chance to create a sample that is truly
representative of the population.

Types of Probability Sampling

1. Simple Random Sampling


2. Stratified Random Sampling

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3. Cluster Sampling
4. Systematic Sampling

1. Simple Random Sampling: This sampling technique usually works around large
population and is a completely random method of selecting the sample. This sampling
method is as easy as assigning numbers to the individuals (sample) and then randomly
choosing from those numbers through an automated process. Finally, the numbers that
are chosen are the members that are included in the sample. There are two ways in which
the samples are chosen in this method of sampling: Lottery system and using random

number tables.
2. Stratified Random Sampling: This is a common method to arrange or classify by gender,
age, ethnicity and similar ways. It involves a method where a larger population can be
divided into smaller mutually exclusive groups, that usually don’t overlap but represent
the entire population together and then using simple random sampling to choose
members from groups. Members in each of these groups should be distinct so that every
member of all groups get equal opportunity to be selected using simple probability (This
sampling method is also called “random quota sampling”).

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3. Cluster Sampling: This is a way to randomly select participants when they are
geographically spread out. Cluster sampling usually analyses a particular population in
which the sample consists of more than a few elements, for example, city, family,
university etc. The clusters are then selected by dividing the greater population into
various smaller sections.

4. Systematic Sampling: Systematic sampling is an extended implementation of the same


old probability technique in which each member of the group is selected at regular periods
to form a sample. In this method, you choose every “nth” individual to be a part of the
sample. For example, you can choose every 5th person to be in the sample There’s an
equal opportunity for every member of a population to be selected using this sampling
technique.

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What are the steps involved in Probability Sampling?

1. Choose your population of interest carefully: Carefully think and choose from the
population, people whose opinions should be collected and then include them in the sample.

2. Determine a suitable sample frame: Sample frame should include a sample from the
population of interest and no one from outside in order to collect accurate data.

3. Select the sample and start the survey: It can sometimes be challenging to find the sample
that responds to true probability survey but, in most cases, drawing a probability sample will
save you time, money, and a lot of frustration. You probably can’t send surveys to everyone
but you can always give everyone a chance to participate, this is what probability sample is
all about.

When to use Probability Sampling

1. When the sampling bias has to be reduced: This sampling method is used when the bias
has to be minimum. The selection of the sample largely determines the quality of the
research’s inference. Probability sampling leads to higher quality findings because it
provides an unbiased representation of the population.
2. When the population is usually diverse: When your population size is large and diverse
this sampling method is usually used extensively as probability sampling helps researchers
create samples that fully represent the population.
3. To create an accurate sample: Probability sampling help researchers create an accurate
sample of their population. Researchers can use proven statistical methods to draw
accurate sample size to obtained well-defined data.

Advantages of Probability Sampling

1. It’s Cost-effective: This process is both cost and time effective and a larger sample can
also be chosen based on numbers assigned to the samples and then choosing random
numbers from the bigger sample.

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2. It’s simple and easy: Probability sampling is an easy way of sampling as it does not
involve a complicated process. Its quick and saves time. The time saved can thus be
used to analyse the data and draw conclusions.
3. It’s non-technical: This method of sampling doesn’t require any technical knowledge
because of the simplicity with which this can be done.

Definition of Non-Probability Sampling

Definition: Non-probability sampling is a sampling technique where the samples are gathered
in a process that does not give all the individuals in the population equal chances of being
selected. Under this technique, there is no probability attached to the unit of the population
and the selection relies on the subjective judgment of the researcher. Therefore, the
conclusions drawn by the researcher cannot be inferred from the sample to the whole
population rather it can be extrapolated.

Types of non-probability sampling are listed below:

1. Convenience Sampling
2. Quota Sampling
3. Judgment or Purposive Sampling
4. Snowball Sampling

1. Convenience Sampling: Convenience sampling is probably the most common of all


sampling techniques. With convenience sampling, the samples are selected because
they are accessible to the researcher. Subjects are chosen simply because they are
easy to recruit. This technique is considered easiest, cheapest and least time
consuming.
2. Quota Sampling: Quota sampling is a non-probability sampling technique wherein the
researcher ensures equal or proportionate representation of subjects depending on
which trait is considered as basis of the quota.
For example, if basis of the quota is college year level and the researcher needs equal
representation, with a sample size of 100, he must select 25 1st year students, another
25 2nd year students, 25 3rd year and 25 4th year students. The bases of the quota
are usually age, gender, education, race, religion and socioeconomic status.

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

3. Judgmental Sampling: Judgmental sampling is more commonly known as purposive


sampling. In this type of sampling, subjects are chosen to be part of the sample with
a specific purpose in mind. With judgmental sampling, the researcher believes that
some subjects are more fit for the research compared to other individuals. This is the
reason why they are purposively chosen as subjects.
4. Snowball Sampling: Snowball sampling is usually done when there is a very small
population size. In this type of sampling, the researcher asks the initial subject to
identify another potential subject who also meets the criteria of the research. The
downside of using a snowball sample is that it is hardly representative of the
population.

Key Differences Between Probability and Non-Probability Sampling

Basis for Comparison Probability Sampling Non-Probability Sampling


Probability sampling is a
Non-probability sampling is a
sampling technique, in which
method of sampling wherein, it is
the subjects of the
Meaning not known that which individual
population get an equal
from the population will be
opportunity to be selected as
selected as a sample.
a representative sample.
Alternately known as Random sampling Non-random sampling
Basis of selection Randomly convenience
Opportunity of
Not specified and unknown Fixed and known
selection
Research Exploratory Conclusive
Result Unbiased Biased
Method Objective Subjective
Inferences Statistical Analytical
Hypothesis Tested Generated

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Questions
3 Marks
1. Explain the concept of sampling
2. Name the two types of sampling.
3. What do you understand by ‘Sampling Error’?
4. What do you mean by ‘Sample Design’?
5. What is probability sampling design?
6. What is non-probability sampling design?
7. What is the concept of convenience sampling?
7 Marks
1. What are the steps in sampling design?
2. How would you state the difference between a sample survey and a census survey?
3. Differentiate between:
a. quota sampling and simple random sampling
b. stratified sampling and cluster sampling.
4. Write short notes on:
a. Multi-stage sampling
b. Purposive sampling
5. ‘’A systematic Bias results from the errors in the sampling procedures”. What do you
mean by systematic bias?
6. Identify the attributes of sampling error.
7. List out the features of a good sample design.
8. Construct a sampling plan.

10 marks
1. Discuss the main steps considered in preparing a sample design
2. Discuss the different types of the probability and non-probability sampling techniques.

*******************

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Unit 4: Data Collection and Measurement Scales


Data Collection: Primary and Secondary data. Primary data collection methods -
Observations, survey, Interview and Questionnaire, Qualitative Techniques of data
collection. Secondary data -Sources – advantages and disadvantages. Questionnaire design
– Meaning - process of designing questionnaire.

Measurement and Scaling Techniques: Basic measurement scales-Nominal scale, Ordinal


scale, Interval scale, Ratio scale. Attitude measurement scale - Likert’s Scale, Semantic
Differential Scale, Thurstone scale, Multi-Dimensional Scaling.

DATA: Primary Data & Secondary Data

Data: The facts and figures which can be numerically measured are studied in statistics.
Numerical measures of same characteristic are known as observation and collection of
observations is termed as DATA. Data are collected by individual research workers or by
organization through sample surveys or experiments, keeping in view the objectives of the
study. The data collected may be:

• Primary Data
• Secondary Data

Data collection is a process of collecting information from all the relevant sources to find
answers to the research problem, test the hypothesis and evaluate the outcomes. Data
collection methods can be divided into two categories:

1. Secondary methods of data collection


2. Primary methods of data collection.
PRIMARY DATA COLLECTION METHODS
1. Quantitative Data:
Quantitative data collection methods describe and measure the level of occurrences
on the basis of numbers and calculations. Quantitative data collection methods are
more structured than in Qualitative research. These are data that are based on
mathematical calculations in various formats like quantities, values or numbers,
making them measurable. Thus, they are usually expressed in numerical forms.
Quantitative methods are cheaper to apply and they can be applied within shorter
duration of time compared to qualitative methods. The use of statistics to generate
and subsequently analyse this type of data add credibility to it, so that quantitative
data is overall seen as more reliable and objective.
Methods of quantitative data collection and analysis include questionnaires with
closed-ended questions, methods of correlation and regression, mean, mode and
median and others.
a. Interviews:

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• Face -to -face interviews have a distinct advantage of enabling the researcher to
establish rapport with potential participants and therefor gain their co-operation.
These interviews yield highest response rates in survey research. They also allow the
researcher to clarify ambiguous answers and when appropriate, seek follow-up
information. Disadvantages include impractical when large samples are involved time
consuming and expensive.
• Telephone interviews are less time consuming and less expensive and the researcher
has ready access to anyone on the planet who has a telephone. Disadvantages are that
the response rate is not as high as the face-to- face interview but considerably higher
than the mailed questionnaire. The sample may be biased to the extent that people
without phones are part of the population about whom the researcher wants to draw
inferences.
b. Computer Assisted Personal Interviewing (CAPI):
CAPI is a form of personal interviewing, but instead of completing a questionnaire, the
interviewer brings along a laptop or hand-held computer to enter the information
directly into the database. This method saves time involved in processing the data, as
well as saving the interviewer from carrying around hundreds of questionnaires.
However, this type of data collection method can be expensive to set up and requires
that interviewers have computer and typing skills.
c. Questionnaires: Questionnaires often make use of Checklist and rating scales. These
devices help simplify and quantify people's behaviour and attitudes. A checklist of
attributes like behaviour, characteristics or other entities that the researcher is looking
for is developed in the questionnaire. Either the researcher or survey participant simply
checks whether each item on the list is observed, present or true or vice versa. A rating
scale is more useful when a behaviour needs to be evaluated on a continuum. They are
also known as Likert scales
• Paper-pencil-questionnaires can be sent to a large number of people and saves the
researcher time and money. People are more truthful while responding to the
questionnaires regarding controversial issues in particular due to the fact that their
responses are anonymous. The disadvantages are that the majority of the people
who receive questionnaires don't return them and those who do might not be
representative of the originally selected sample.
• Web based questionnaires: A new and inevitably growing methodology is the use of
Internet based research using a secure web-site to fill in a questionnaire. This type of
research is often quicker and less detailed. The disadvantages of this method include
the exclusion of people who do not have a computer or are unable to access a
computer.
2. Qualitative Data: These data, on the other hand, do not involve numbers or mathematical
calculations rather they are descriptive in nature. Qualitative research is closely
associated with words, sounds, feeling, emotions, colours and other elements that are
non-quantifiable. Qualitative studies aim to ensure greater level of depth of

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understanding and unlike quantitative data, they are generally not measurable and are
only gained mostly through narratives and observation.
Qualitative Data Collection Methods include interviews, questionnaires with open-ended
questions, focus groups, observation, game or role-playing, case studies etc. Generally,
qualitative methods are time-consuming and expensive to conduct, and so researchers
try to lower the costs incurred by decreasing the sample size or number of respondents.
Qualitative Data Methods:
Face-to-Face Personal Interviews: This is considered to be the most common data
collection instrument for qualitative research, primarily because of its personal approach.
The interviewer will collect data directly from the interviewee on a one-on-one and face-
to-face interaction. This is ideal for when data to be obtained must be highly personalized.
The interview may be informal and unstructured – conversational. The questions asked
are mostly unplanned and spontaneous, with the interviewer letting the flow of the
interview dictate the next questions to be asked.
a. Paper Surveys/Questionnaires: Questionnaires often utilize a structure comprised of
short questions and, in the case of qualitative questionnaires, they are usually open-
ended, with the respondents asked to provide detailed answers, in their own words.
b. Focus Groups Methods: This method is basically an interview method done in a group
discussion format. The object of the data is analysing behaviour and attitudes
particularly in social situations. Ideally, the focus group should have at least 3 people
and a moderator to around 10 to 13 people maximum, plus a moderator. Resources
for one-on-one interviews are limited therefore, using the focus group approach is
highly recommended.
c. Observation: In this method, to get reliable information and valid data, the researcher
involves himself with his respondents and generally taking a look at everything, while
taking down notes. Apart from note-taking, other documentation methods may be
used, such as video and audio recording, photography.
d. Longitudinal studies: This is a data collection method that is performed repeatedly,
on the same data sources, over an extended period of time. It is an observational
research method that could even cover a span of years and, in some cases, even
decades. The goal is to find correlations through an empirical or observational study
of subjects with a common trait or characteristic.
e. Case Studies: In this qualitative method, data is gathered by taking a close look and
an in-depth analysis of a “case study” or “case studies” – the unit or units of research
that may be an individual, a group of individuals, or an entire organization. This
methodology’s versatility is demonstrated in how it can be used to analyse both
simple and complex subjects. However, the strength of a case study as a data
collection method is attributed to how it utilizes other data collection methods, and
captures more variables than when a single methodology is used. In analysing the case
study, the researcher may employ other methods such as interviewing, floating
questionnaires, or conducting group discussions in order to gather data.

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OVERVIEW OF DATA COLLECTION TECHNIQUES

Technique Key Facts


• Interviews can be conducted in person or over the telephone
• Interviews can be done formally (structured), semi-structured or
informally
Interviews • Questions should be focused, clear and encourage open-ended
responses
• Interviews are mainly qualitative in nature

• Responses can be analysed with quantitative methods by


assigning numerical values to Likert-type scales
Questionnaires • Results are generally easier (than qualitative techniques) to
and Surveys analyse
• Pre-test / Post-test can be compared and analysed

• Allows for the study of the dynamics of a situation,


frequency counts of target behaviours, or other
behaviours as indicated by needs of the evaluation
• Good source for providing additional information about a
Observations particular group, can use video to provide documentation
• Can produce qualitative (e.g., narrative data) and
quantitative data (e.g., frequency counts, mean length of
interactions, and instructional time)

• A facilitated group interview with individuals that have


something in common
• Gathers information about combined perspectives and
Focus Groups opinions
• Responses are often coded into categories and analysed
thematically

• Involves studying a single phenomenon


• Examines people in their natural settings
Ethnographies, • Uses a combination of techniques such as observation,
Oral History, and interviews, and surveys
Case Studies • Ethnography is a more holistic approach to evaluation
• Researcher can become a confounding variable

• Consists of examining existing data in the form of databases,


Documents and
meeting minutes, reports, attendance logs, financial records,
Records
newsletters, etc.

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

• This can be an inexpensive way to gather information but may


be an incomplete data source

The choice between quantitative or qualitative methods of data collection depends on the
area of your research and the nature of research aims and objectives.

Quantitative Qualitative
Requirement Question Hypothesis
Method Control and randomization Curiosity and reflexivity
Data collection Response Vewpoint
Outcome Dependent variable Accounts
Ideal Data Numerical
Sample size Large (power) Small (saturation)
Context Eliminated Highlighted
Analysis Rejection on null Synthesis

SECONDARY DATA: SOURCES – ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES

Secondary Data - Methods of Data Collection: Secondary data is a type of data that
has already been published in books, newspapers, magazines, journals, online portals
etc. There is an abundance of data available in these sources about any research area
selected.

When the researcher utilises secondary data, then he has to look into various sources
from where he can obtain them. In this case he is certainly not confronted with the
problems that are usually associated with the collection of original data.

Secondary data may either be published data or unpublished data. Usually published
data are available in:

a. Various publications of the central, state are local governments;


b. Various publications of foreign governments or of international bodies and their
subsidiary organisations;
c. Technical and trade journals;
d. Books, magazines and newspapers;
e. Reports and publications of various associations connected with business and
industry, banks, stock exchanges, etc.;
f. Reports prepared by research scholars, universities, economists, etc. in different
fields;

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

g. Public records and statistics, historical documents, and other sources of published
information.

The sources of unpublished data are many; they may be found in diaries, letters,
unpublished biographies and autobiographies and also may be available with scholars
and research workers, trade associations, labour bureaus and other public/ private
individuals and organisations.

Characteristics of Secondary Data: By way of caution, the researcher, before using


secondary data, must look for following characteristics so as to evaluate whether the
data is reliable, relevant, accurate and so on;

1. Reliability of data: The reliability can be tested by finding out such things about the
said data:

a. Who collected the data?


b. What were the sources of data?
c. Were they collected by using proper methods?
d. At what time were they collected?
e. Was there any bias of the compiler?
f. What level of accuracy was desired?
g. Was it achieved?

2. Availability of Data: It has to be seen that the kind of data you want is available or
not. If it is not available then you have to go for primary data.
3. Relevance of the Data: It should be meeting the requirements of the problem like;
a. Units of measurement should be the same.
b. Concepts used must be same and currency of data should not be outdated.
c. The object, scope and nature of the original enquiry must also be studied.
4. Accuracy of the Data: In order to find the accuracy of the data;
a. Specification and methodology used;
b. Margin of error should be examined;
c. The dependability of the source must be seen.
5. Adequacy of data: Adequate data should be available. The researcher should use the
data only If the level of accuracy achieved in data is found to be adequate in terms of
authenticity and economical enough for the purpose of the present enquiry.

Therefore, application of appropriate set of criteria to select secondary data can be


used as an important role in terms of increasing the levels of research validity and
reliability. These criteria include, but not limited to;

a) The date of publication

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

b) Credentials of the author


c) Reliability of the source
d) Quality of discussions
e) Depth of analysis
f) The extent of contribution of the text to the development of the research area etc.

Advantages and disadvantages of secondary data collection

Advantages:

1. It is economical. It saves efforts and expenses.


2. It is time saving.
3. It helps to make primary data collection more specific since with the help of secondary
data, we are able to make out what are the gaps and deficiencies and what additional
information needs to be collected.
4. It helps to improve the understanding of the problem.
5. It provides a basis for comparison for the data that is collected by the researcher.

Disadvantages:

1. Secondary data is something that seldom fits in the framework of the marketing research
factors.
2. Accuracy of secondary data is not known.
3. Data may be outdated.

KEY DIFFERENCES BETWEEN PRIMARY AND SECONDARY DATA

The fundamental differences between primary and secondary data are discussed in the
following points:

1. The term primary data refers to the data originated by the researcher for the first time.
Secondary data is the already existing data, collected by the investigator agencies and
organisations earlier.
2. Primary data is a real-time data whereas secondary data is one which relates to the past.
3. Primary data is collected for addressing the problem at hand while secondary data is
collected for purposes other than the problem at hand.
4. Primary data collection is a very involved process. On the other hand, secondary data
collection process is rapid and easy.
5. Primary data collection sources include surveys, observations, experiments,
questionnaire, personal interview, etc. On the contrary, secondary data collection
sources are government publications, websites, books, journal articles, internal records
etc.

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6. Primary data collection requires a large amount of resources like time, cost and
manpower. Conversely, secondary data is relatively inexpensive and quickly available.
7. Primary data is always specific to the researcher’s needs, and he controls the quality of
research. In contrast, secondary data is neither specific to the researcher’s need, nor he
has control over the data quality.
8. Primary data is available in the raw form whereas secondary data is the refined form of
primary data. It can also be said that secondary data is obtained when statistical methods
are applied to the primary data.
9. Data collected through primary sources are more reliable and accurate as compared to
the secondary sources.

Basis for
Primary Data Secondary Data
Comparison
Primary data refers to the first
Secondary data means data
Meaning hand data gathered by the
collected by someone else earlier.
researcher himself.
Data Real time data Past data
Process Very involved Quick and easy
Surveys, observations, Government publications,
Source experiments, questionnaire, websites, books, journal articles,
personal interview, etc. internal records etc.
Cost
Expensive Economical
effectiveness
Collection time Long Short
Always specific to the researcher's May or may not be specific to the
Specific
needs. researcher's need.
Available in Crude form Refined form
Accuracy and
More Relatively less
Reliability

QUESTIONNAIRE DESIGN: MEANING -& PROCESS OF DESIGNING QUESTIONNAIRE

Questionnaire: A set of printed or written questions with a choice of answers, devised for the
purposes of a survey or statistical study. Questionnaire is a systematic, data collection
technique consists of a series of questions required to be answered by the respondents to
identify their attitude, experience, and behaviour towards the subject of research.

A questionnaire is a research instrument consisting of a series of questions (or other types of


prompts) for the purpose of gathering information from respondents. The questionnaire was
invented by the Statistical Society of London in 1838.

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

Questionnaire Design: Questionnaire design is the process of designing the format and
questions in the survey instrument that will be used to collect data about a particular
phenomenon. In designing a questionnaire, all the various stages of survey design and
implementation should be considered. These include the following nine elements:

1. Determination of goals, objectives, and research questions;


2. Definition of key concepts;
3. Generation of hypotheses and proposed relationships;
4. Choice of survey mode (mail, telephone, face-to-face, Internet);
5. Question construction;
6. Sampling;
7. Questionnaire administration and data collection;
8. Data summarization and analysis;
9. Conclusions and communication of results.

Questionnaire Design Process: One goal of the questionnaire design process is to reduce the
total amount of measurement error in a questionnaire. The following steps are involved in
the questionnaire design process;

1. Specify the Information Needed: The first and the foremost step in designing the
questionnaire is to specify the information needed from the respondents such that the
objective of the survey is fulfilled. The researcher must completely review the
components of the problem, particularly the hypothesis, research questions, and the
information needed.
2. Define the Target Respondent: At the very outset, the researcher must identify the
target respondent from whom the information is to be collected. The questions must be
designed keeping in mind the type of respondents under study.
3. Specify the type of Interviewing Method: The next step is to identify the way in which
the respondents are reached. In personal interviews, the respondent is presented with
a questionnaire and interacts face-to-face with the interviewer. Thus, lengthy, complex
and varied questions can be asked using the personal interview method. In telephone
interviews, the respondent is required to give answers to the questions over the
telephone. Here the respondent cannot see the questionnaire and hence this method
restricts the use of small, simple and precise questions. The questionnaire can be sent
through mail or post. It should be self-explanatory and contain all the important
information such that the respondent is able to understand every question and gives a
complete response. The electronic questionnaires are sent directly to the mail ids of the
respondents and are required to give answers online.
4. Determine the Content of Individual Questions: Once the information needed is
specified and the interviewing methods are determined, the next step is to decide the
content of the question. The researcher must decide on what should be included in the
question such that it contributes to the information needed for the research on hand. In

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

some situations, the indirect questions which are not directly related to the information
needed may be asked. It is useful to ask neutral questions at the beginning of a
questionnaire with intent to establish respondent’s involvement and rapport.
5. Overcome Respondent’s Inability and Unwillingness to Answer: The researcher should
not presume that the respondent can provide accurate responses to all the questions.
He must attempt to overcome the respondent’s inability to answer by designing the
questions in a simple and easy language such that it is easily understood by each
respondent. Despite being able to answer the question, the respondent is unwilling to
devote time in providing information. The researcher must attempt to understand the
reason behind such unwillingness and design the questionnaire in such a way that it
helps in retaining the respondent’s attention.
6. Decide on the Question Structure: The researcher must decide on the structure of
questions to be included in the questionnaire. The question can be structured or
unstructured. The unstructured questions are the open-ended questions which are
answered by the respondents in their own words. These questions are also called as a
free-response or free-answer questions. While, the structured questions are called as
closed-ended questions that pre-specify the response alternatives. These questions
could be a multiple choice question, dichotomous (yes or no) or a scale.
7. Determine the Question Wording: The desired question content and structure must be
translated into words which are easily understood by the respondents and the
information desired should sync with what is expected. On the other hand, if the wrong
information is given, then “ response error” arises due to which the result is biased.
8. Determine the Order of Questions: At this step, the researcher must decide the
sequence in which the questions are to be asked. The opening questions are crucial in
establishing respondent’s involvement and rapport, and therefore, these questions
must be interesting, non-threatening and easy. Usually, the open-ended questions
which ask respondents for their opinions are considered as good opening questions,
because people like to express their opinions.
9. Identify the Form and Layout: The format, positioning and spacing of questions has a
significant effect on the results. The layout of a questionnaire is specifically important
for the self-administered questionnaires. The questionnaires must be divided into
several parts, and each part shall be numbered accurately to clearly define the branches
of a question.
10. Reproduction of Questionnaire: Here, we talk about the appearance of the
questionnaire, i.e. the quality of paper on which the questionnaire is either written or
printed. In case, the questionnaire is reproduced on a poor-quality paper; then the
respondent might feel the research is unimportant due to which the quality of response
gets adversely affected. Thus, it is recommended to reproduce the questionnaire on a
good-quality paper having a professional appearance. In case, the questionnaire has
several pages, then it should be presented in the form of a booklet rather than the sheets
clipped or stapled together.

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

11. Pretesting: Pretesting means testing the questionnaires on a few selected respondents
or a small sample of actual respondents with a purpose of improving the questionnaire
by identifying and eliminating the potential problems. All the aspects of the
questionnaire must be tested such as question content, structure, wording, sequence,
form and layout, instructions, and question difficulty. The researcher must ensure that
the respondents in the pre-test should be similar to those who are to be finally surveyed.

Thus, the questionnaire design is a multistage process that requires the researcher’s attention
to many details.

Design a questionnaire consisting of 20 questions for a pharmaceutical


company which is planning to launch a new vaccine for Flu.

Hi, we at Bizolytics, a leading market research firm globally, wanted to seek feedback from
you on the acceptance of Flu Vaccine. This will not take more than 10-15 minutes of your time.
The questions which are mentioned here do not have any right or wrong answers; we are just
interested in your honest opinion. Your opinion is highly treasured and will be kept strictly
confidential. Thank You.

Flu Vaccination Survey

Instructions: Use single code or mark only once

Demographic Profiling

1. Name (Optional): ________________________


2. Age
<25 years 1
25 to 35 years 2
35 to 50 years 3
>50 years 4

3. Gender
Male 1
Female 2

4. Education
Below Graduation 1
Graduate 2
Post Graduate 3

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

Others 4

5. Occupation
Professional (Engineer/ Doctor/ CA) 1
Manager 2
Supervisory level 3
Clerical/Salesmen 4
Businessman/Industrialist 5
Businessmen/ Industrialists with
6. Marital Status Married 1
Not Married 2

7. Is your household

Single Income household 1


Double Income Household 2

8. Please choose the city where you are currently living in


Mumbai 1
Delhi 2
Bangalore 3
Chennai 4
Hyderabad 5
Kolkata 6
Pune 7
Ahmedabad 8
Others 9

PART B

9. Are you aware of the Flu Vaccine


Yes 1
No 2

10. Did you get a Flu Vaccine


Yes 1
No 2

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11. Specify any other reason you have for hesitating to get a flu vaccine

The boxes 1,2,3,4,5 indicate the following

1 – Strongly 2 – Disagree 3 – Neutral 4 – Agree 5 – Strongly


Disagree Agree

12. I hesitate to get a flu shot because:

Sl. Flu Vaccine – Opinion and Details Code


No. 1 2 3 4 5
a. The flu is not a serious illness.
b. I got a flu shot last year so I don’t need it
this year
c. I am afraid of the side effects
d. I feel the vaccine will make me sick with
the flu.
e. I don’t have time.
f. I prefer alternative medicines to vaccines
g. I don’t believe in vaccines.
h. I am afraid of needles

Thank You!!

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18MBA23 – Research Methodology

PART B

MEASUREMENT SCALES AND TECHNIQUES

Measurement Scales and Techniques

Scaling is a quantitative measurement tool frequently used in commercial marketing research


studies. In business marketing, for instance, survey or focus group respondents can
communicate their opinions and preferences regarding a particular object or between a select
group of objects. This information can be categorized by unique properties into variables and
used to gain insights on market demand preferences.

The 4 levels of Measurement Scales in business research are classified in to Nominal, Ordinal,
Ratio and Interval.

Nominal

Nominal scale is the placement of data into categories without order. This, the crudest of
measurement scales, classifies individuals, companies, products, brands or other entities into
categories where no order is implied. Hence it is often referred to as a categorical scale. It is
a system of classification that involves a simple count of the numbers assigned to label each
category.

For instance, a market survey that uses a simple "yes or no" scaling option is nominal because
the options do not represent a continuum, order, or distance between the two options.

Ordinal

A classification that implies an order is described as an ordinal scale. Ordinal scales involve
the ranking of individuals, attitudes or items along the continuum of the characteristic being
scaled. This is a simple market research tool indicating the respondent's preference among a
list of items.

For example, if a researcher asked farmers to rank 5 brands of pesticide in order of preference
he/she might obtain response.. or a researcher may ask a survey respondent to rank a list of
breakfast cereals by order of preference. In this example, the researcher gains insights on the
preference order, but not on the degree of preference between any of the two brands.

Interval Scales

Interval scaling is developed when a survey respondent is asked to provide feedback on


individual merchandise or service. It is only with an interval scaled data that researchers can
justify the use of the arithmetic mean as the measure of average. The interval or cardinal scale
has equal units of measurement, thus making it possible to interpret not only the order of
scale scores but also the distance between them. It deals with continuous data and hence
also called a Cardinal Scale.

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An example of an interval rating scale is to ask a survey respondent to try a product and to
rate their preference on a zero to 10 rating scale, with zero representing unfavourable and 10
most favourable.

Ratio scales

The highest level of measurement is a ratio scale. This has the properties of an interval scale
together with a fixed origin or zero point. Examples of variables which are ratio scaled include
weights, lengths and times. Ratio scales permit the researcher to compare both differences
in scores and the relative magnitude of scores. For instance, the difference between 5 and 10
minutes is the same as that between 10 and 15 minutes, and 10 minutes is twice as long as 5
minutes.

Sources of Error in Measurement

Measurement should be precise and unambiguous in an ideal research study. This objective,
however, is often not met with in entirety. As such the researcher must be aware about the
sources of error in measurement. The following are the possible sources of error in
measurement.

• Respondent: At times the respondent may be reluctant to express strong negative


feelings or it is just possible that he may have very little knowledge but may not admit
his ignorance. All this reluctance is likely to result in an interview of ‘guesses.’
Transient factors like fatigue, boredom, anxiety, etc. may limit the ability of the
respondent to respond accurately and fully.
• Situation: Situational factors may also come in the way of correct measurement. Any
condition which places a strain on interview can have serious effects on the
interviewer-respondent rapport. For instance, if someone else is present, he can
distort responses by joining in or merely by being present. If the respondent feels that
anonymity is not assured, he may be reluctant to express certain feelings.
• Measurer: The interviewer can distort responses by rewording or reordering
questions. His behaviour, style and looks may encourage or discourage certain replies
from respondents. Careless mechanical processing may distort the findings. Errors
may also creep in because of incorrect coding, faulty tabulation and/or statistical
calculations, particularly in the data-analysis stage.
• Instrument: Error may arise because of the defective measuring instrument. The use
of complex words, beyond the comprehension of the respondent, ambiguous
meanings, poor printing, inadequate space for replies, response choice omissions, etc.
are a few things that make the measuring instrument defective and may result in
measurement errors. Another type of instrument deficiency is the poor sampling of
the universe of items of concern. Researcher must know that correct measurement
depends on successfully meeting all of the problems listed above. He must, to the
extent possible, try to eliminate, neutralize or otherwise deal with all the possible
sources of error so that the final results may not be contaminated.

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Scale Construction Techniques

In social science studies, while measuring attitudes of the people we generally follow the
technique of preparing the opinionnaire* (or attitude scale) in such a way that the score of
the individual responses assigns him a place on a scale. Under this approach, the respondent
expresses his agreement or disagreement with a number of statements relevant to the issue.
While developing such statements, the researcher must note the following two points:

A. That the statements must elicit responses which are psychologically related to the
attitude being measured.
B. That the statements need be such that they discriminate not merely between
extremes of attitude but also among individuals who differ slightly.
Researchers must as well be aware that inferring attitude from what has been
recorded in opinionnaires has several limitations. People may conceal their attitudes
and express socially acceptable opinions. They may not really know how they feel
about a social issue. People may be unaware of their attitude about an abstract
situation; until confronted with a real situation, they may be unable to predict their
reaction. Even behaviour itself is at times not a true indication of attitude. Thus, there
is no sure method of measuring attitude; we only try to measure the expressed
opinion and then draw inferences from it about people’s real feelings or attitudes.
Attitude Scales: Attitude scales provide a quantitative measurement of attitudes,
opinions or values by summarising numerical scores given by researchers to people's
responses to sets of statements exploring dimensions of an underlying theme.
Managers are interested in knowing consumers’ attitudes, beliefs, preferences, as well
as competitive reactions among other important market phenomena.

Comparative and non-comparative scaling Techniques: Researchers have identified several


important characteristics for developing high quality scales which require

a. Understanding the defined problem


b. Establishing detailed data requirements
c. Identifying and developing the constructs
d. Understanding the complete measurement scale.

The above stated key features can assist marketing researchers in developing a
reliable and valid scale. The scaling techniques regularly employed in marketing
research can be classified on two basic aspects:

▪ Comparative scaling
▪ Non-comparative scaling.

As the name suggests comparative scaling scaling technique involves direct


comparison of stimulus objects with one another. For example, managers are
generally interested in knowing consumer preference regarding their brand in
comparison to a competitor’s brand. A researcher can then ask question such as which

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of the two brands consumer prefers and this would provide the manager a clear idea
of what consumer preferences are. There are several techniques which are used in
building comparative scale such as paired comparison, rank order, constant sum scale,
and q-sort.

1. Paired Comparison Scaling Technique: In paired comparison scaling, respondents are


asked to choose one among two alternatives on a selected criterion. For example, a
respondent may be asked to choose between two well-known toothpaste brands on
the criterion of quality. The data obtained from paired comparison scaling is ordinal in
nature. When there are more than two stimuli involved paired comparison scaling can
still be useful technique to compare various stimuli. In simple terms, using paired
comparison scaling researcher can generate a rank order among stimuli. Paired
comparison scaling is used in pricing decisions or product testing frequently. Many
food companies and other Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) companies use this
technique to compare their existing product with an upcoming variant or with their
competitor’s products.
2. Rank order scaling Technique: Rank order scaling as the name suggests is about
ranking a specific set of stimuli on a pre-defined criterion. It’s also quite popular
among researchers when trying to understand a specific rank order among various
stimuli. The respondents are provided with various stimuli objects and asked to
rank the most preferred object, the second most preferred object and so on. This
scaling technique also uses comparison between stimuli objects using a pre-
determined criterion. Rank order scaling generates ordinal data and therefore
lacks distance and origin properties. Due to the absence of distance and origin
properties rank order scaling cannot provide an objective difference between
various stimuli objects.
3. Constant sum scaling Technique: In constant sum scaling, respondents are asked
to assign a constant sum of units (could include points, currency, and so on) to a
specific set of stimulus objects with respect to some pre-defined criterion.
Constant sum scales can be helpful when measuring consumer shopping basket
preferences. Such as, how much would they spend on each specific food items if
they had Rs. 100o. With the advent of internet-based surveys, constant sum scales
have become easier to implement because software used in the background can
keep track of the total and inform the respondent of the changes required.
4. Q-sort Scaling Technique: Q-sort can be called an extension to rank order scaling.
It uses a rank order procedure in which objects are sorted into piles based on
similarity with respect to some pre-defined criteria. It provides grouping according
to the respondents’ preferences among a relative larger number of objects quickly.

The non-comparative scaling: In non-comparative scaling, researchers use whatever


rating standard seems appropriate to them. Respondents answering non-comparative
scale-based questions evaluate only one object at a time. Non-comparative scaling

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involves two techniques namely: continuous and itemized rating scales. Itemized
scales are further divided in Likert, semantic differential and stapel scale. For example,
instead of direct comparison between brands researcher may ask the respondent to
rate each brand separately on a scale of 1 – 10 and can evaluate each brand as well as
compare the brands also.

Rating scales: The rating scale involves qualitative description of a limited number of aspects
of a thing or of traits of a person. When we use rating scales (or categorical scales), we judge
an object in absolute terms against some specified criteria i.e., we judge properties of objects
without reference to other similar objects. These ratings may be in such forms as “like-
dislike”, “above average, average, below average”, or other classifications with more
categories such as “like very much—like some what—neutral—dislike somewhat—dislike
very much”; “excellent—good—average—below average—poor”, “always—often—
occasionally —rarely—never”, and so on. There is no specific rule whether to use a two-points
scale, three-points scale or scale with still more points. In practice, three to seven points
scales are generally used for the simple reason that more points on a scale provide an

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opportunity for greater sensitivity of measurement. Rating scale may be either a graphic
rating scale or an itemized rating scale. These statements are ordered progressively in terms
of more or less of some property.

Differential Scales (Thurstone Scales)

The name of L.L. Thurstone is associated with differential scales which have been developed
using consensus scale approach. The researcher gathers a large number of statements,
usually twenty or more, that express various points of view toward a group, institution, idea,
or practice (i.e., statements belonging to the topic area).

These statements are then submitted to a panel of judges, each of whom arranges them in
eleven groups or piles ranging from one extreme to another in position. Each of the judges is
requested to place generally in the first pile the statements which he thinks are most
unfavourable to the issue, in the second pile to place those statements which he thinks are
next most unfavourable and he goes on doing so in this manner till in the eleventh pile he
puts the statements which he considers to be the most favourable.

The Thurstone method has been widely used for developing differential scales which are
utilized to measure attitudes towards varied issues like war, religion, etc. Such scales are
considered most appropriate and reliable when used for measuring a single attitude. But an
important deterrent to their use is the cost and effort required to develop them. Another
weakness of such scales is that the values assigned to various statements by the judges may
reflect their own attitudes. The method is not completely objective; it involves ultimately
subjective decision process. Critics of this method also opine that some other scale designs
give more information about the respondent’s attitude in comparison to differential scales.

Summated Scales (Likert Scales)

Most frequently used summated scales in the study of social attitudes follow the pattern
devised by Likert. For this reason they are often referred to as Likert-type scales. Summated
scales (or Likert-type scales) are developed by utilizing the item analysis approach wherein a
particular item is evaluated on the basis of how well it discriminates between those persons
whose total score is high and those whose score is low. Those items or statements that best
meet this sort of discrimination test are included in the final instrument. Thus, summated

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scales consist of a number of statements which express either a favourable or unfavourable


attitude towards the given object to which the respondent is asked to react. The respondent
indicates his agreement or disagreement with each statement in the instrument. Each
response is given a numerical score, indicating its favourableness or unfavourableness, and
the scores are totalled to measure the respondent’s attitude. In other words, the overall score
represents the respondent’s position on the continuum of favourable-unfavourableness
towards an issue.

In a Likert scale, the respondent is asked to respond to each of the statements in terms of
several degrees, usually five degrees (but at times 3 or 7 may also be used) of agreement or
disagreement. For example, when asked to express opinion whether one considers his job
quite pleasant, the respondent may respond in any one of the following ways:

5. strongly agree,

4. agree,

3. undecided,

2. disagree,

1. strongly disagree.

Advantages: The Likert-type scale has several advantages.

1. It is relatively easy to construct the Likert-type scale in comparison to Thurstone-type


scale because Likert-type scale can be performed without a panel of judges.
2. Likert-type scale is considered more reliable because under it respondents answer
each statement included in the instrument. As such it also provides more information
and data than does the Thurstone-type scale.
3. Each statement, included in the Likert-type scale, is given an empirical test for
discriminating ability and as such, unlike Thurstone-type scale, the Likert-type scale
permits the use of statements that are not manifestly related (to have a direct
relationship) to the attitude being studied.
4. Likert-type scale can easily be used in respondent-centred and stimulus-centred
studies i.e., through it we can study how responses differ between people and how
responses differ between stimuli.

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5. Likert-type scale takes much less time to construct, it is frequently used by the
students of opinion research. Moreover, it has been reported in various research
studies* that there is high degree of correlation between Likert-type scale and
Thurstone-type scale.

Limitations: There are several limitations of the Likert-type scale as well.

1. One important limitation is that, with this scale, we can simply examine whether
respondents are more or less favourable to a topic, but we cannot tell how much more
or less they are.
2. There is no basis for belief that the five positions indicated on the scale are equally
spaced. The interval between ‘strongly agree’ and ‘agree’, may not be equal to the
interval between “agree” and “undecided”. This means that Likert scale does not rise
to a stature more than that of an ordinal scale, whereas the designers of Thurstone
scale claim the Thurstone scale to be an interval scale.
3. One further disadvantage is that often the total score of an individual respondent has
little clear meaning since a given total score can be secured by a variety of answer
patterns. It is unlikely that the respondent can validly react to a short statement on a
printed form in the absence of real-life qualifying situations. Moreover, there
“remains a possibility that people may answer according to what they think they
should feel rather than how they do feel.”

In spite of all the limitations, the Likert-type summated scales are regarded as the most useful
in a situation wherein it is possible to compare the respondent’s score with a distribution of
scores from some well-defined group. They are equally useful when we are concerned with a
programme of change or improvement in which case we can use the scales to measure
attitudes before and after the programme of change or improvement in order to assess
whether our efforts have had the desired effects. We can as well correlate scores on the scale
to other measures without any concern for the absolute value of what is favourable and what
is unfavourable. All this accounts for the popularity of Likert-type scales in social studies
relating to measuring of attitudes.

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Factor Scales

Factor scales are developed through factor analysis or on the basis of intercorrelations of
items which indicate that a common factor accounts for the relationships between items.
Factor scales are particularly “useful in uncovering latent attitude dimensions and approach
scaling through the concept of multiple-dimension attribute space.” More specifically the two
problems viz., how to deal appropriately with the universe of content which is multi-
dimensional and how to uncover underlying (latent) dimensions which have not been
identified, are dealt with through factor scales. An important factor scale based on factor
analysis is Semantic Differential (S.D.) and the other one is Multidimensional Scaling.

Semantic differential scale: Semantic differential scale or the S.D. scale developed by Charles
E. Osgood, G.J. Suci and P.H. Tannenbaum (1957), is an attempt to measure the psychological
meanings of an object to an individual. This scale is based on the presumption that an object
can have different dimensions of connotative meanings which can be located in
multidimensional property space, or what can be called the semantic space in the context of
S.D. scale. This scaling consists of a set of bipolar rating scales, usually of 7 points, by which
one or more respondents rate one or more concepts on each scale item.

Procedure: Various steps involved in developing S.D. scale are as follows:

1. First of all the concepts to be studied are selected. The concepts are usually chosen by
personal judgement, keeping in view the nature of the problem.
2. The next step is to select the scales bearing in mind the criterion of factor composition
and the criterion of scale’s relevance to the concepts being judged (it is common
practice to use at least three scales for each factor with the help of which an average
factor score has to be worked out).
3. One more criterion to be kept in view is that scales should be stable across subjects
and concepts.
4. Then a panel of judges are used to rate the various stimuli (or objects) on the various
selected scales and the responses of all judges would then be combined to determine
the composite scaling.

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Advantages:

1. It is an efficient and easy way to secure attitudes from a large sample.


2. These attitudes may be measured in both direction and intensity.
3. The total set of responses provides a comprehensive picture of the meaning of an
object, as well as a measure of the subject doing the rating. It is a standardized
technique that is easily repeated, but escapes many of the problems of response
distortion found with more direct methods.”

Multidimensional scaling:

Multidimensional scaling (MDS) is relatively more complicated scaling device, but with this
sort of scaling one can scale objects, individuals or both with a minimum of information.
Multidimensional scaling (or MDS) can be characterized as a set of procedures for portraying
perceptual or affective dimensions of substantive interest. It “provides useful methodology
for portraying subjective judgements of diverse kinds.” MDS is used when all the variables
(whether metric or non-metric) in a study are to be analyzed simultaneously and all such
variables happen to be independent. The underlying assumption in MDS is that people
(respondents) “perceive a set of objects as being more or less similar to one another on a
number of dimensions (usually uncorrelated with one another) instead of only one.” Through
MDS techniques one can represent geometrically the locations and interrelationships among
a set of points. In fact, these techniques attempt to locate the points, given the information
about a set of interpoint distances, in space of one or more dimensions such as to best
summarise the information contained in the interpoint distances. The distances in the
solution space then optimally reflect the distances contained in the input data. For instance,
if objects, say X and Y, are thought of by the respondent as being most similar as compared
to all other possible pairs of objects, MDS techniques will position objects X and Y in such a
way that the distance between them in multidimensional space is shorter than that between
any two other objects.

Two approaches, used in MDS are; the metric approach and the non-metric approach.

The metric approach to MDS treats the input data as interval scale data and solves applying
statistical methods for the additive constant* which minimises the dimensionality of the
solution space. This approach utilises all the information in the data in obtaining a solution.

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The data (i.e., the metric similarities of the objects) are often obtained on a bipolar similarity
scale on which pairs of objects are rated one at a time. If the data reflect exact distances
between real objects in an r-dimensional space, their solution will reproduce the set of
interpoint distances. But as the true and real data are rarely available, we require random and
systematic procedures for obtaining a solution. Generally, the judged similarities among a set
of objects are statistically transformed into distances by placing those objects in a
multidimensional space of some dimensionality.

The non-metric approach first gathers the non-metric similarities by asking respondents to
rank order all possible pairs that can be obtained from a set of objects. Such non-metric data
is then transformed into some arbitrary metric space and then the solution is obtained by
reducing the dimensionality. In other words, this non-metric approach seeks “a
representation of points in a space of minimum dimensionality such that the rank order of
the interpoint distances in the solution space maximally corresponds to that of the data. This
is achieved by requiring only that the distances in the solution be monotone with the input
data.”9 The non-metric approach has come into prominence during the sixties with the
coming into existence of high speed computers to generate metric solutions for ordinal input
data.

Advantages:

1. The significance of MDS lies in the fact that it enables the researcher to study “the
perceptual structure of a set of stimuli and the cognitive processes underlying the
development of this structure. Psychologists, for example, employ multidimensional
scaling techniques in an effort to scale psychophysical stimuli and to determine
appropriate labels for the dimensions along which these stimuli vary.”
2. The MDS techniques, infact, do away with the need in the data collection process to
specify the attribute(s) along which the several brands, say of a particular product,
may be compared as ultimately the MDS analysis itself reveals such attribute(s) that
presumably underlie the expressed relative similarities among objects.
3. Thus, MDS is an important tool in attitude measurement and the techniques falling
under MDS promise “a great advance from a series of unidimensional measurements
(e.g., a distribution of intensities of feeling towards single attribute such as colour,

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taste or a preference ranking with indeterminate intervals), to a perceptual mapping


in multidimensional space of objects ... company images, advertisement brands, etc.”

Disadvantages:

1. In spite of all the merits stated above, the MDS is not widely used because of the
computation complications involved under it.
2. Many of its methods are quite laborious in terms of both the collection of data and
the subsequent analyses. However, some progress has been achieved (due to the
pioneering efforts of Paul Green and his associates) during the last few years in the
use of non-metric MDS in the context of market research problems.
3. The techniques have been specifically applied in “finding out the perceptual
dimensions, and the spacing of stimuli along these dimensions, that people, use in
making judgements about the relative similarity of pairs of Stimuli.” But, “in the long
run, the worth of MDS will be determined by the extent to which it advances the
behavioral sciences.”

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Questions
3 Marks
1. What is Primary data?
2. State the Sources of secondary data.
3. What is a questionnaire?
4. What do you understand by the term ‘Multidimensional Scaling (MDS)’
7 Marks
1. Discuss the the methods of primary data collection.
2. What are the sources of secondary data?
3. Mention the Qualitative Techniques of Data collection
4. Differentiate between primary data and secondary data.
5. Examine the merits and demerits of the Observation metod of data collection.
6. Write short notes on
a. Thematic Apperception Test
b. Depth Interviews
7. Write a note on the four types of measurement scales
10 marks
1. Compare the advantages and disadvantage of primary data collection methods.
2. Compare the advantages and disadvantages of Secondary Data collection methods.
3. Design a questionnaire consisting of 20 questions for a pharmaceutical company which is
planning to launch a new vaccine for Flu.

**********

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Unit 5: Hypothesis Testing


• Hypothesis: Meaning, Types, characteristics, source, Formulation of Hypothesis,
Errors in Hypothesis
• Parametric and Non-Parametric Test: T-Test, Z-Test, F-Test, U-Test, K-W Test
(problems on all tests)
• Statistical Analysis: Bivarate Analysis (Chi-Square only), Multivariate Analysis (only
theory)
• ANOVA: One- Way and Two Way Classification. (Theory Only)

After the definition of the research problem, the next important step in the research process
is the formulation of the hypothesis.

Hypothesis:

Research Hypothesis is defined as a tentative assumption made in order to draw out and test
its logical or empirical consequences.

Research Hypothesis is the probable statement of a proposition or a reasonable guess, based


upon the available evidences, which the researcher seeks to prove through his study.

Research Hypothesis is a declarative statement in which the investigator makes a prediction


or a speculation about the outcome of the relationship.

Research Hypothesis is an assumption or proposition which is tested on the basis of the


compatibility of its implications with empirical evidence or with previous knowledge.

Research Hypothesis is a predictive statement, which is capable of being tested using


scientific methods that involve an independent and some dependent variables.

For Example:

• “Drinking sugary drinks daily leads to obesity” or,


• “The female students perform as well as the male students”.

These two statements are hypotheses that can be objectively verified and tested. Thus, they
indicate that a hypothesis is a proposition that can be put to test in order to examine its
validity.

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Types of hypothesis

Hypotheses are of two types, Null Hypothesis and Alternative Hypothesis. The null and
alternative hypotheses are two mutually exclusive statements about a population. A
hypothesis test uses sample data to determine whether to reject the null hypothesis.

Null Hypothesis: When two methods A and B are compared on their relative superiority and
It is assumed that both the methods are equally good, then such a statement is known as the
null hypothesis.

A null hypothesis exists when a researcher believes there is no relationship between the two
variables, or there is a lack of information to state a scientific hypothesis. The null hypothesis
states that a population parameter (such as the mean, the standard deviation, and so on) is
equal to a hypothesized value. The null hypothesis is often an initial claim that is based on
previous analyses or specialized knowledge. The null hypothesis is expressed as H0.

On the other hand, if method A is considered relatively superior to method B, or vice-versa,


then such a statement is known as an Alternative Hypothesis. In an attempt to disprove a
null hypothesis, researchers will seek to discover an alternative hypothesis. The alternative
hypothesis states that a population parameter is smaller, greater, or different than the
hypothesized value in the null hypothesis. The alternative hypothesis is what you might
believe to be true or hope to prove true. The alternative hypothesis is expressed as H1.

One-sided and two-sided hypotheses: The alternative hypothesis can be either one-sided or
two sided.

Two-sided

Use a two-sided alternative hypothesis (also known as a nondirectional hypothesis) to


determine whether the population parameter is either greater than or less than the
hypothesized value. A two-sided test can detect when the population parameter differs in
either direction, but has less power than a one-sided test.

Example: A researcher has results for a sample of students who took a national exam at a high
school. The researcher wants to know if the scores at that school differ from the national
average of 850. A two-sided alternative hypothesis (also known as a nondirectional

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hypothesis) is appropriate because the researcher is interested in determining whether the


scores are either less than or greater than the national average. (H0: μ = 850 vs. H1: μ≠ 850)

One-sided

Use a one-sided alternative hypothesis (also known as a directional hypothesis) to determine


whether the population parameter differs from the hypothesized value in a specific direction.
You can specify the direction to be either greater than or less than the hypothesized value. A
one-sided test has greater power than a two-sided test, but it cannot detect whether the
population parameter differs in the opposite direction.

Example: A researcher has exam results for a sample of students who took a training course
for a national exam. The researcher wants to know if trained students score above the
national average of 850. A one-sided alternative hypothesis (also known as a directional
hypothesis) can be used because the researcher is specifically hypothesizing that scores for
trained students are greater than the national average. (H0: μ = 850 vs. H1: μ > 850)

Characteristics of Hypothesis

A hypothesis should have the following characteristic features

1. It must be precise and clear for inferences to be drawn.


2. A hypothesis must be capable of being put to test.
3. It must state the relationship between two variables, in the case of relational
hypotheses.
4. It must be specific, stated in simple language and limited in scope.
5. It must be consistent and derived from the most known and significant body of
established facts.
6. It must be agreeable to testing within a stipulated or reasonable period of time.
7. A researcher by using the hypothesis and other known and accepted generalizations,
he must be able to derive the original problem condition.

Therefore, a hypothesis should explain what it actually wants to explain, and for this, it
should also have an empirical reference.

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Source of Hypothesis:

1. First, an explorative research work might lead to the establishment of hypothesis.


2. Second, the environment is a source of hypothesis, because environment portrays
broad relationship across factors which form the basis for drawing an inference.
3. Third, analogies are a source of hypothesis

Types of Errors: Two types of errors Type I and Type II are normally committed while
testing the hypothesis using the sample data.

Type I Error: If the null hypothesis is rejected when it is true, then the error committed is
known as type I error. The probability of making a type I error is α, which is the level of
significance you set for your hypothesis test.

An α of 0.05 indicates that you are willing to accept a 5% chance that you are wrong when
you reject the null hypothesis. To lower this risk, you must use a lower value for α.
However, using a lower value for alpha means that you will be less likely to detect a true
difference if one really exists.

Type II Error: When the null hypothesis is false and you fail to reject it, then type II error
is committed. The probability of rejecting the null hypothesis when it is false is equal to
1–β. This value is the power of the test.

The probability of making a type II error is β, which depends on the power of the test. You
can decrease your risk of committing a type II error by ensuring your test has enough
power. You can do this by ensuring your sample size is large enough to detect a practical
difference when one truly exists.

Example of type I and type II error

A medical researcher wants to compare the effectiveness of two medications.

• Null hypothesis (H0): μ1= μ2. The two medications are equally effective.
• Alternative hypothesis (H1): μ1≠ μ2. The two medications are not equally
effective.

A type I error occurs if the researcher rejects the null hypothesis and concludes that the
two medications are different when, in fact, they are not. If the medications have the

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same effectiveness, the researcher may not consider this error too severe because the
patients still benefit from the same level of effectiveness regardless of which medicine
they take. However, if a type II error occurs, the researcher fails to reject the null
hypothesis when it should be rejected. That is, the researcher concludes that the
medications are the same when, in fact, they are different. This error is potentially life-
threatening if the less-effective medication is sold to the public instead of the more
effective one.

Decision based on sample Truth about the population


H0 is true H0 is false
Fail to reject H0 Correct Decision Type II Error - fail to reject
(probability = 1 - α) H0 when it is false
(probability = β)
Reject H0 Type I Error - rejecting Correct Decision
H0 when it is true (probability = 1 - β)
(probability = α)

Formulation of Hypothesis: The third step in the research process after formulating
problem statement and literature review is to formulate hypotheses. The hypothesis is a
tentative solution of a problem. The research activities are planned to verify the
hypothesis and not to find out the solution of the problem or to seek an answer of a
question. It is very essential to a research worker to understand the meaning and nature
of hypothesis.

Testing the hypothesis

• A hypothesis test is a rule that specifies whether to accept or reject a claim about a
population depending on the evidence provided by a sample of data.
• A hypothesis test examines two opposing hypotheses about a population: the null
hypothesis and the alternative hypothesis.
• The null hypothesis is the statement being tested. Usually the null hypothesis is a
statement of "no effect" or "no difference".

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• The alternative hypothesis is the statement you want to be able to conclude is true
based on evidence.
• While formulating the hypothesis test, we set the null hypothesis up as what we want
to disapprove. Because we fix the significance level to be small before the analysis
(usually, a value of 0.05 works well), when we reject the null hypothesis, we have
statistical proof that the alternative is true.

Examples of a hypothesis test include:

1. Does the mean height of undergraduate women differ from 66 inches?


2. Is the standard deviation of their height equal to or less than 5 inches?
3. Do male and female undergraduates differ in height on average?
Is the proportion undergraduate male students significantly higher than the
proportion of undergraduate female students? Statistical Tests
Statistical Test: These are tests intended to decide whether a hypothesis about a
distribution of one or more populations should be rejected or accepted.
The statistical tests may be Parametric Test or Non Parametric Test which tests the
statistical significance of the:-
1. Difference in sample and population means.
2. Difference in two sample means
3. Several population means
4. Difference in proportions between sample and population
5. Difference in proportions between two independent populations
6. Significance of association between two variables

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Procedure for setting up a hypothesis and testing it

1. Set up a Hypothesis: State the Research Hypothesis in order to establish the hypothesis
to be tested. The statistical hypothesis is an assumption about the value of some
unknown parameter and the hypothesis provides some numerical value or range of
values for the parameter. Construct a Null Hypothesis and Alternative Hypothesis.
Formulate the Null Hypotheses: The Null Hypothesis denoted by H0 asserts that there
is no true difference between the sample of data and the population parameter and that
the difference is accidental which is caused due to the fluctuations in sampling. Thus, a
null hypothesis states that there is no difference between the assumed and actual value
of the parameter.
The alternative hypothesis denoted by H1 is the other hypothesis about the population,
which stands true if the null hypothesis is rejected. Thus, if we reject H0 then the
alternative hypothesis H1 gets accepted.
2. Set up a Suitable Significance Level: Once the hypothesis about the population is
constructed, the researcher has to state the Level of Significance by choosing a
significance level, α= 0.05, which is the most commonly used significance level, i.e. a
confidence level with which the null hypothesis is accepted or rejected. The significance
level is denoted by ‘α’ and is usually defined before the samples are drawn such that

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results obtained do not influence the choice. In practice, we either take 5% or 1% level
of significance.
If the 5% level of significance is taken, it means that there are five chances out of 100
that we will reject the null hypothesis when it should have been accepted, i.e. we are
about 95% confident that we have made the right decision. Similarly, if the 1% level of
significance is taken, it means that there is only one chance out of 100 that we reject the
hypothesis when it should have been accepted, and we are about 99% confident that
the decision made is correct.
3. Determining a Suitable Test Statistic: After the hypothesis are constructed and the
significance level is decided upon. The next step is to determine the required sample
size and the criteria for a suitable test statistic and its distribution. Most of the statistic

tests assume the following form:


4. Determining the Critical Region: Before the samples are drawn it must be decided that
which values to the test statistic will lead to the acceptance of H0 and which will lead
to its rejection. The values that lead to rejection of H0 is called the critical region.
5. Performing Computations: Once the critical region is identified and values are
computed, apply the formula of the test statistic as shown in step (3) to check whether
the sample results falls in the acceptance region or the rejection region.
6. The conditions to test are also checked. Whether it’s a one tailed or a two tailed or right
tailed or a left tailed test by choosing from the following alternative hypotheses:
• The population mean is less than the target (one sided: μ <0.05)
• The population mean is greater than the target (one sided: μ > 0.05)
• The population mean differs from the target (two sided: μ ≠ 0.05)
7. Decision-making: Once all the steps are performed, We compare the calculated test
statistic with the tabulated values. The statistical conclusions can be drawn and the
management can take decisions. The decision involves either accepting the null
hypothesis or rejecting it. The decision that the null hypothesis is accepted or rejected
depends on whether the computed value falls in the acceptance region or the rejection
region.

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Thus, to test the hypothesis, it is necessary to follow these steps systematically so that the
results obtained are accurate and do not suffer from either of the statistical error i.e. Type-I
error and Type-II error

Parametric and Non-Parametric Tests

Parametric Test: A parametric statistical test is one that makes assumptions about the
parameters (defining properties) of the population distribution(s) from which one's data
are drawn. A parametric test is a hypothesis testing procedure based on the assumption
that observed data are distributed according to normal distribution for some unknown
parameter(s) and are characterized by the fact that they use parameters from the data
like mean, variance or standard deviation. These test may include;

i. t-test,
ii. z-test
iii. Multiple Regression,
iv. Pearson correlation,
v. ANOVA

Parametric Tests are used;

- For Quantitative Data


- For Continuous variables
- When data are measured on approximate interval or ratio scales of measurement.
- When data should follow normal distribution

Non-Parametric Tests: Non-parametric tests refer to a statistical method in which the


data is not required to fit a normal distribution. Nonparametric statistics uses data that is
often ordinal, meaning it does not rely on numbers, but rather on a ranking or order of
sorts. They are also known as distribution free tests. The most common nonparametric
tests are;

i. Mann-Whitney U Test.
ii. Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test.
iii. The Kruskal-Wallis Test.
iv. Chi-squared (x2) Test.

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Statistical Analysis: Bivarate Analysis (Chi-Square only)

Bivariate analysis is one of the simplest forms of statistical analysis. It involves the analysis of
two variables. (often denoted as X, Y), for the purpose of determining the empirical
relationship between them. Bivariate analysis can be helpful in testing simple hypotheses of
association. Bivariate analysis can help determine to what extent it becomes easier to know
and predict a value for one variable (possibly a dependent variable) if we know the value of
the other variable (possibly the independent variable) Bivariate analysis can be descriptive or
inferential in nature. It is the analysis of the relationship between the two variables.

A chi-square goodness of fit test determines if a sample data matches a population. A chi-
square test for independence compares two variables in a contingency table to see if they are
related. In a more general sense, it tests to see whether distributions of categorical variables
differ from each another. It is calculated by using the formula;

Where Oi is the observed frequency and Ei is the expected frequency

Multivariate Analysis: Multivariate analysis is a set of statistical techniques used for analysis
of data that contain more than one variable. ... Multivariate analysis refers to any statistical
technique used to analyse more complex sets of data.

Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)

What is Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)?

Analysis of variance (ANOVA) is an analysis tool used in statistics that splits an observed
aggregate variability found inside a data set into two parts: systematic factors and random
factors.

The systematic factors have a statistical influence on the given data set, while the random
factors do not.

Analysts use the ANOVA test to determine the influence that independent variables have on
the dependent variable in a regression study.

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The t- and z-test methods developed in the 20th century were used for statistical analysis
until 1918, ANOVA is also called the Fisher analysis of variance because Ronald Fisher created
the analysis of variance method and it is the extension of the t- and z-tests.

F= MSE/MST,

where:

F=ANOVA coefficient

MST=Mean sum of squares due to treatment

MSE=Mean sum of squares due to error

The ANOVA test is the initial step in analyzing factors that affect a given data set. The ANOVA
test allows a comparison of more than two groups at the same time to determine whether a
relationship exists between them. The result of the ANOVA, the F statistic (also called the F-
ratio), allows for the analysis of multiple groups of data to determine the variability between
samples and within samples.

If no real difference exists between the tested groups, which is called the null hypothesis, the
result of the ANOVA's F-ratio statistic will be close to 1. Fluctuations in its sampling will likely
follow the Fisher F distribution. This is actually a group of distribution functions, with two
characteristic numbers, called the numerator degrees of freedom and the denominator
degrees of freedom.

Advantages

Analysis of variance, or ANOVA, is a statistical method that separates observed variance data
into different components to use for additional tests.

A one-way ANOVA is used for three or more groups of data, to gain information about the
relationship between the dependent and independent variables.

If no true variance exists between the groups, the ANOVA's F-ratio should equal close to 1.

Example of How to Use ANOVA

A researcher might, for example, test students from multiple colleges to see if students from
one of the colleges consistently outperform students from the other colleges. In a business

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application, an R&D researcher might test two different processes of creating a product to
see if one process is better than the other in terms of cost efficiency.

The type of ANOVA test used depends on a number of factors. It is applied when data needs
to be experimental.

ANOVA is helpful for testing three or more variables. It is similar to multiple two-sample t-
tests. However, it results in fewer type I errors and is appropriate for a range of issues. ANOVA
groups differences by comparing the means of each group and includes spreading out the
variance into diverse sources. It is employed with subjects, test groups, between groups and
within groups.

One-Way ANOVA Versus Two-Way ANOVA

There are two types of ANOVA: one-way (or unidirectional) and two-way. One-way or two-
way refers to the number of independent variables in your analysis of variance test. A one-
way ANOVA evaluates the impact of a sole factor on a sole response variable. It determines
whether all the samples are the same. The one-way ANOVA is used to determine whether
there are any statistically significant differences between the means of three or more
independent (unrelated) groups.

A two-way ANOVA is an extension of the one-way ANOVA. With a one-way, you have one
independent variable affecting a dependent variable. With a two-way ANOVA, there are two
independents. For example, a two-way ANOVA allows a company to compare worker
productivity based on two independent variables, such as salary and skill set. It is utilized to
observe the interaction between the two factors and tests the effect of two factors at the
same time

Questions
3 Marks
1. What is a Hypothesis?
2. Identify the different types of hypothesis.
3. What do you understand by the term ‘Level of Significance’. How is it represented?
4. What is degree of freedom?
5. What is Chi-square test? Explain it significance in statistical analysis.
6. What is the significant difference between Parametric and Non-parametric tests?

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7 Marks
1. What is a t-test? When is it used? Explain with an example.
2. Distinguish between ‘Null Hypothesis’ and ‘Alternative Hypothesis’
3. Compare one tailed test and two tailed test.
4. What do you understand by the terms ‘Acceptance Region’ and ‘Rejection Region’
5. Write a note on Type I error and Type II error.
6. What are the characteristics of hypothesis?
10 Marks
1. Examine the procedure for Hypothesis Testing.
2. Explain the meaning of ANOVA. Describe briefly the technique of analysis of variance
for one way and two way classifications.

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Unit 6: Data Analysis and Report writing


Contents

Preparing the Data for Analysis: Editing, Coding, Classification, Tabulation, Validation,
Analysis and Interpretation

Report writing and presentation of results: Importance of report writing, types of research
report, report structure, guidelines for effective documentation.

After collecting data, the method of converting raw data into meaningful statement; includes
data processing, data analysis, and data interpretation and presentation.

Data Processing occurs when data is collected and translated into usable information. Data
processing starts with data in its raw form and converts it into a more readable format
(graphs, documents, etc.), giving it the form and context necessary to be interpreted.

Data Analysis: Data analysis is a process of inspecting, cleansing, transforming, and modeling
data with the goal of discovering useful information, informing conclusions, and supporting
decision-making. The survey data collected from the field should be processed and analyzed
as indicated in the research plan.

Data processing primarily involves editing, coding, classification and tabulation of data, so
that it becomes suitable for data analysis.

Data Editing
Data editing is a process of examining the raw data to detect errors and omissions and to
correct them, if possible, so as to ensure legibility, completeness, consistency and accuracy.
The recorded data must be legible so that it could be coded later. Completeness involves that
all the items in the questionnaire must be fully completed. It is very important to check
whether or not respondent is consistent in answering the questions and also answering them
correctly as required. In fact, the editing involves a careful scrutiny of the completed
questionnaires. The editing can be done at two stages:

1. Field Editing: The field editing consists of review of the reporting forms by the
investigator for completing or translating what was written in abbreviated form at the
time of interviewing the respondent making it readable for the tabulator.

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2. Central Editing: Central editing should be carried out when all the forms of schedules
have been completed and returned to the headquarters. This type of editing requires
that all the forms are thoroughly edited by the editor who may correct the obvious
errors, such as a wrong entry. The new (corrected) entry made by the editor should be
in some distinctive form. The date of editing may also be recorded on the schedule for
any future reference.

Data Coding

Coding is the process of assigning some symbols (either) alphabetical or numericals or (both)
to the answers so that the responses can be recorded into a limited number of classes or
categories. The data coding is necessary for the efficient analysis of data. The coding
decisions should usually be taken at the designing stage of the questionnaire itself so that
the likely responses to questions are pre-coded. This simplifies computer tabulation of the
data for further analysis. The classes should be appropriate to the research problem being
studied. They must be exhaustive and must be mutually exclusive so that the answer can be
placed in one and only one cell in a given category. Further, every class must be defined in
terms of only one concept.

Data Classification:

Data Classification is broadly defined as the process of organizing data by relevant categories
so that it may be used and protected more efficiently. On a basic level, the classification
process makes data easier to locate and retrieve. There are three main types of data
classification and they are;

1. Content-based classification inspects and interprets files looking for sensitive


information
2. Context-based classification looks at application, location, or creator among other
variables as indirect indicators of sensitive information
3. User-based classification depends on a manual, end-user selection of each
document.

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Data Tabulation

The tabulation is used for summarization and condensation of data. It aids in analysis of
relationships, trends and other summarization of the given data. The tabulation may be
simple or complex. By convention, the dependent variable is presented in the rows and the
independent variable in the columns. The tables are used to view;

- The findings in a simpler way


- To identify trends
- To display relationships in a comparable way between parts of the findings.

Data Validation

Data validation is a form of data cleansing. Data validation means checking the accuracy and
quality of source data before using, importing or otherwise processing data. Different types
of validation can be performed depending on destination constraints or objectives. Data
validation is vital to ensure the data is clean, correct and useful which is crucial because the
validated data forms the basis for informed decisions and decisive actions.

There are 4 main types of validation:

- Prospective Validation.
- Concurrent Validation.
- Retrospective Validation.
- Revalidation (Periodic and After Change)

Data Analysis and Interpretation

Interpretation of data refers to the task of drawing inferences from the collected facts after
an analytical and/or experimental study. In fact, it is a search for broader meaning of research
findings. The task of interpretation has two major aspects;

1. The effort to establish continuity in research through linking the results of a given
study with those of another
2. The establishment of some explanatory concepts.

Data analysis and interpretation is the process of assigning meaning to the collected
information and determining the conclusions, significance and implications of the findings. It

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is an important step in the process of research. In all research studies, analysis follows data
collection.

According to C.R.Kothari (1989), “The term analysis refers to the computation of measures
along with searching for patterns of relationship that exist among data-groups”. Analysis
involves estimating the values of unknown parameters of the population and testing of
hypotheses for drawing inferences.

REPORT

The meaning and significance of Research report is considered a major component of the
research study for the research task remains incomplete till the report has been presented
and/or written. A report is a written document on a particular topic, which conveys
information and ideas and may also make recommendations. Reports often form the basis of
crucial decision making.

Research report is the final stage of every research in which research procedure, analysis,
findings and so forth aspects of research endeavors are presented in organized and
systematic way. It is the process of scientific and professional communication regarding
research findings

Criteria for a good Report

A good report can be written by keeping the following features in mind -

1. All points in the report should be clear to the intended reader.


2. The report should be concise with information kept to a necessary minimum and
arranged logically under various headings and sub-headings.
3. All information should be correct and supported by evidence.
4. All relevant material should be included in a complete report.

Layout of the research Report

A comprehensive layout of the research report should comprise preliminary pages, the main
text and the end matter.

1. Preliminary Pages: In its preliminary pages the report should include the following;

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- The cover page should include – The Title of the research study, Name of the
researcher, Name of the Institution and the date of submission.
- The consequent pages should be followed by certificates, acknowledgements,
‘Preface’ or ‘Foreword’, a table of contents followed by list of tables and
illustrations with mandatorily specifying the page numbers and brief synopsis
also known by the name an executive summary or an abstract which should state
in brief the purpose of doing a particular study, the methodology adopted along
with the justification of the sample design in brief and the tentative results in not
more than 150 -200 words with 3 – 5 keywords.
2. The Main Text: The main text provides the complete outline of the research report
along with all details. The Title of the research study is repeated at the top of the first
page of the main text and then follows the other details on pages numbered
consecutively, beginning with the second page. Each main section of the report should
begin on a new page. The main text of the report should have the following sections:
- Introduction: The purpose of introduction is to introduce the research project to
the readers. It should contain a clear statement of the problem, its research
objectives of research i.e., enough background should be given to make clear to
the reader why the problem was considered worth investigating.
- A background information on the organisation where the study was conducted
and why it was chosen.
- A conceptual note which should include the definitions of the major concepts
employed in the study should be explicitly stated in the introduction of the
report.
- Review of literature indicates a brief summary of other relevant research may
also be stated so that the present study can be seen in that context
- A full explanation on Research Methodology should give the methodology
adopted in conducting the study must be fully explained by giving the resaons
for selecting a particular research design and formulating the hypothesis. The
methods of data collection, the tools used has to be specified.
- The Data analysis follows the research methodology where a detailed
description of all the statistical tools used for analysisng the data has to be

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mentioned by justifying whether the research supported the formulated


hypotheses or not.
- The Statement of findings and recommendations gives a detailed analysis of
results in relation to the research questions and hypothesis and the implications
drawn thereof.
- A detailed presentation of the findings of the study, with supporting data in the
form of tables and charts together with a validation of results, is the next step in
writing the main text of the report.
- Toward the end of the main text, the researcher should again put down the
results of his research clearly and precisely and draw implications. A statement
of the inferences drawn from the present study which may be expected to apply
in similar circumstances. The relevant questions that still remain unanswered or
new questions raised by the study along with suggestions for the kind of research
that would provide answers for them.
- Conlusion: It is considered a good practice to finish the report with a short
conclusion which summarises and summarizes the main points of the study. The
conclusion drawn from the study should be clearly related to the hypotheses that
were stated in the introductory section. At the same time, a forecast of the
probable future of the subject and an indication of the kind of research which
needs to be done in that particular field is useful and desirable.
- Summary: It has become customary to conclude the research report with a very
brief summary, resting in brief the research problem, the methodology, the
major findings and the major conclusions drawn from the research results. The
scientific reader would like to know in detail about such thing: How was the study
carried out? What was its basic design? If the study was an experimental one,
then what were the experimental manipulations? If the data were collected by
means of questionnaires or interviews, then exactly what questions were asked
(The questionnaire or interview schedule is usually given in an appendix)? If
measurements were based on observation, then what instructions were given to
the observers? Regarding the sample used in the study the reader should be told:
Who were the subjects? How many were there? How were they selected? All
these questions are crucial for estimating the probable limits of generalizability

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of the findings. The statistical analysis adopted must also be clearly stated. In
addition to all this, the scope of the study should be stated and the boundary
lines be demarcated. The various limitations, under which the research project
was completed, must also be narrated.
3. End Matter: Bibliography of sources consulted has to included at the end of the
report, appendices should be enlisted in respect of all technical data such as
questionnaires, sample information, mathematical derivations and the like ones.
Index (an alphabetical listing of names, places and topics along with the numbers of
the pages in a book or report on which they are mentioned or discussed) should
invariably be given at the end of the report. The value of index lies in the fact that it
works as a guide to the reader for the contents in the report.

Contents of a Research report

Section 1: Preliminary Part which includes Title page/Cover Sheet, certificates,


acknowledgement, table of contents, list of tables and figures

Section 2: Synopsis/Executive summary (a basic summary of the report, including sample,


treatment, design, results, and implications) (≤ 150 words)

Section 3: Introduction (8-10 pages)


• Basic introduction of the topic of study
• Conceptual explanation and its relation to the study
• Company Background
• Supportive statistics (can be from periodicals)
• Statement of Purpose
• Statement of Significance
• Tentative outcome
• Timeline
• Chapterisation

Section 4: Research question(s) or hypotheses


• An overall research question (optional)
• A quantitative-based (hypotheses)
• A qualitative-based (research questions)
Note: You will generally have more than one, especially if using hypotheses.

Section 5: Review of Literature


Should be organized by subheadings

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• Should adequately support your study using supporting, related, and/or refuting
evidence
• Should always be a synthesis, not a collection of individual summaries
• Should be able to identify the research Gap

Section 6: Research Methodology


• Procedure: Describe data collection
• Sample: Describe the sample or dataset, including basic demographics
• Instrument: Describe, in detail, how you implemented the instrument; Describe the
reliability and validity associated with the instrument
Data Analysis: Describe type of procedure (t-test, interviews, etc.) and software (if
used)

Section 7: Results
Restate Research Question 1 (Quantitative) and Describe results
Restate Research Question 2 (Qualitative) and Describe results

Section 8: Discussion

• Restate Overall Research Question, Describe how the results, when taken together,
answer the overall question.

• Describe how the results confirm or contrast the literature you reviewed

Section 9: Suggestions and Implications for future research

Section 10: Limitations


- Discuss, in several sentences, the limitations of this study.
- Research Design (overall, then info about the limitations of each separately)
- Sample
- Instrument/s
- Other limitations

Section 11: Conclusion (A brief closing summary)

Section 12: Bibliography and References (APA format)

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Questions
3 Marks
1. What is Data Analysis?
2. What do you understand by the term ‘Documentation’?
7 Marks
1. Explain the steps in data presentation.
2. ‘Interpretation is a fundamental component of research process’, Explain.
OR
3. Explain the task of data interpretation in the context of research methodology.
4. Describe in brief the layout of a research report
5. What are the characteristics of a good research report?
6. Write a note on Bibliography and its importance in research report.
10 marks
1. Discuss the significance of research report and narrate the various steps in writing a
report.

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