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Name: Rajesh Kumar Roll number: 520932980 Learning centre: 03036 Subject: MB 0050- RESEARCH METHODOLOGY Assignment No.: Set 1 Date of submission at learning centre:
ASSIGNMENTS Subject code: MB0050 (4 credits) Marks 60 SUBJECT NAME: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY Note: Each Question carries 10 marks Q1. Give examples of specific situations that would call for the following types of research, explaining why – a) Exploratory research b) Descriptive research c) Diagnostic research d) Evaluation research. Ans: a) Exploratory research- It is also known as formulative research. It is preliminary study of an unfamiliar problem about which the researcher has little or no knowledge. It is illstructured and much less focused on pre-determined objectives. It usually takes the form of a pilot study. The purpose of this research may be to generate new ideas, or to increase the researcher’s familiarity with the problem or to make a precise formulation of the problem or to gather information for clarifying concepts or to determine whether it is feasible to attempt the study. Katz conceptualizes two levels of exploratory studies. “At the first level is the discovery of the significant variable in the situations; at the second, the discovery of relationships between variables.” It is a type of research conducted for a problem that has not been clearly defined. Exploratory research helps determine the best research design, data collection method and selection of subjects. It should draw definitive conclusions only with extreme caution. Given its fundamental nature, exploratory research often concludes that a perceived problem does not actually exist. Exploratory research often relies on secondary research such as reviewing available literature and/or data, or qualitative approaches such as informal discussions with consumers, employees, management or competitors, and more formal approaches through in-depth interviews, focus groups, projective methods, case studies or pilot studies. The Internet allows for research methods that are more interactive in nature. For example, RSS feeds efficiently supply researchers with up-to-date information; major search engine search results may be sent by email to researchers by services such as Google Alerts; comprehensive search results are tracked over lengthy periods of time by services such as Google Trends; and websites may be created to attract worldwide feedback on any subject. The results of exploratory research are not usually useful for decision-making by themselves, but they can provide significant insight into a given situation. Although the results of qualitative research can give some indication as to the "why", "how" and "when" something occurs, it cannot tell us "how often" or "how many". Exploratory research is not typically generalizable to the population at large.
b) Descriptive research- It is a fact-finding investigation with adequate interpretation. It is the simplest type of research. It is more specific than an exploratory research. It aims at identifying the various characteristics of a community or institution or problem under study and also aims at a classification of the range of elements comprising the subject matter of study. It contributes to the development of a young science and useful in verifying focal concepts through empirical observation. It can highlight important methodological aspects of data collection and interpretation. The information obtained may be useful for prediction about areas of social life outside the boundaries of the research. They are valuable in providing facts needed for planning social action program. It also known as statistical research, describes data and characteristics about the population or phenomenon being studied. Descriptive research answers the questions who, what, where, when and how... Although the data description is factual, accurate and systematic, the research cannot describe what caused a situation. Thus, Descriptive research cannot be used to create a causal relationship, where one variable affects another. In other words, descriptive research can be said to have a low requirement for internal validity. The description is used for frequencies, averages and other statistical calculations. Often the best approach, prior to writing descriptive research, is to conduct a survey investigation. Qualitative research often has the aim of description and researchers may follow-up with examinations of why the observations exist and what the implications of the findings are. In short descriptive research deals with everything that can be counted and studied. But there are always restrictions to that. Your research must have an impact to the lives of the people around you. For example, finding the most frequent disease that affects the children of a town. The reader of the research will know what to do to prevent that disease thus, more people will live a healthy life. c) Diagnostic research- It is similar to descriptive study but with a different focus. It is directed towards discovering what is happening, why it is happening and what can be done about. It aims at identifying the causes of a problem and the possible solutions for it. It may also be concerned with discovering and testing whether certain variables are associated. This type of research requires prior knowledge of the problem, its thorough formulation, clear-cut definition of the given population, adequate methods for collecting accurate information, precise measurement of variables, statistical analysis and test of significance. d) Evaluation research- It is a type of applied research. It is made for assessing the effectiveness of social or economic programmes implemented or for assessing the impact of developmental projects on the development of the project area. It is thus directed to assess or appraise the quality and quantity of an activity and its performance, and to specify its attributes and conditions required for its success. It is concerned with causal relationships and is more actively guided by hypothesis. It is concerned also with change over time. Q2.In the context of hypothesis testing, briefly explain the difference between a) Null and alternative hypothesis b) Type 1 and type 2 errors c) Two tailed and one tailed test d) Parametric and non parametric tests.
Ans: a) Null and alternative hypothesis- In the context of statistical analysis, we often talk null and alternative hypothesis. If we are to compare method A with method B about its superiority and if we proceed on the assumption that both methods are equally good, then this assumption is termed as null hypothesis. As against this, we may think that the method A is superior, it is alternative hypothesis. Symbolically presented as: Null hypothesis = H0 and Alternative hypothesis = Ha Suppose we want to test the hypothesis that the population mean is equal to the hypothesis mean (µ H0) = 100. Then we would say that the null hypotheses are that the population mean is equal to the hypothesized mean 100 and symbolical we can express as: H0: µ= µ H0=100
If our sample results do not support these null hypotheses, we should conclude that something else is true. What we conclude rejecting the null hypothesis is known as alternative hypothesis. If we accept H0, then we are rejecting Ha and if we reject H0, then we are accepting Ha. For H0: µ= µ H0=100, we may consider three possible alternative hypotheses as follows: b) Type 1 and type 2 errors- In the context of testing of hypothesis there are basically two types of errors that researchers make. We may reject H0 when H0 is true & we may accept H0 when it is not true. The former is known as Type I & the later is known as Type II. In other words, Type I error mean rejection of hypothesis which should have been accepted & Type II error means accepting of hypothesis which should have been rejected. Type I error is donated by á (alpha), also called as level of significance of test; and Type II error is donated by (beta).
The probability of Type I error is usually determined in advance and is understood as the level of significance of testing the hypothesis. If type I error is fixed at 5%, it means there are about chances in 100 that we will reject H0 when H0 is true. We can control type I error just by fixing it at a lower level. For instance, if we fix it at 1%, we will say that the maximum probability of committing type I error would only be 0.01. But with a fixed sample size, n when we try to reduce type I error, the probability of committing type II error increases. Both types of errors can not be reduced simultaneously. There is a tradeoff in business situations, decision-makers decide the appropriate level of type I error by examining the costs of penalties attached to both types of errors. If type I error involves time & trouble of reworking a batch of chemicals that should have been accepted, where as type II error means taking a chance that an entire group of users of this chemicals compound will be poisoned, then in such a situation one should prefer a type I error to a type II error means taking a chance that an entire group of users of this chemicals compound will be poisoned, then in such a situation one should prefer a type II error. As a result one must set very high level for type I error in one’s testing techniques of a given hypothesis. Hence, in testing of hypothesis, one must make all possible effort to strike an adequate balance between Type I & Type II error. c) Two tailed and one tailed test- In the context of hypothesis testing these two terms are quite important and must be clearly understood. A two-tailed test rejects the null hypothesis if, say, the sample mean is significantly higher or lower than the hypnotized value of the mean of the population. Such a test inappropriate when we have If significance level is % and the two-tailed test to be applied, the probability of the rejection area will be 0.05 (equally split on both tails of curve as 0.025) and that of the acceptance region will be 0.95. If we take µ = 100 and if our sample mean deviates significantly from µ, in that case we shall accept the null hypothesis. But there are situations when only one-tailed test is considered appropriate. A one-tailed test would be used when we are to test, say, whether the population mean in either lower than or higher than some hypothesized value. d) Parametric and non parametric tests- The hypothesis testing determines the validity of the assumption (technically described as null hypothesis) with a view to choose between the conflicting hypotheses about the value of the population hypothesis about the value of the population of a population parameter. Hypothesis testing helps to secede on the basis of a sample data, whether a hypothesis about the population is likely to be true or false. Statisticians have developed several tests of hypothesis (also known as tests of significance) for the purpose of testing of hypothesis which can be classified as: • • Parametric tests or standard tests of hypothesis ; Non Parametric test or distribution – free test of the hypothesis.
Parametric tests usually assume certain properties of the parent population from which we draw samples. Assumption like observations come from a normal population, sample size is large, assumptions about the population parameters like mean, variants etc must hold good before parametric test can be used. But there are situation when the researcher cannot or does
not want to make assumptions. In such situations we use statistical methods for testing hypothesis which are called non parametric tests because such tests do not depend on any assumption about the parameters of parent population. Besides, most non-parametric test assumes only nominal or original data, where as parametric test require measurement equivalent to at least an interval scale. As a result non-parametric test needs more observation than a parametric test to achieve the same size of Type I & Type II error. Q 3. Explain the difference between a causal relationship and correlation, with an example of each. What are the possible reasons for a correlation between two variables? Ans: Economic and business variables are related. For instance, demand and supply of a commodity is related to its price. Demand for a commodity increases as price falls. Demand for a commodity decreases as its price rises. We say demand and price are inversely related or negatively correlated. But sellers supply more of a commodity when its price rises. Supply of the commodity decreases when its price falls. We say supply and price are directly related or positively co-related. Thus, correlation indicates the relationship between two such variables in which changes in the value of one variable is accompanies with a change in the value of other variable. According to L.R. Connor, “if two or more quantities vary in sympathy so that movements in the one tend to be accompanied by corresponding movements in the other(s) they are said to be correlated”. W.I. King defined “Correlation means that between two series or groups of data, there exists some casual connection”. The definitions make it clear that the term correlation refers to the study of relationship between two or more variables. Correlation is a statistical device, which studies the relationship between two variables. If two variables are said to be correlated, change in the value of one variable result in a corresponding change in the value of other variable. Heights and weights of a group of people, age of husbands and wives etc., are examples of bi-variant data that change together. Correlation and Causation Although, the term correlation is used in the sense of mutual dependence of two or more variable, it is not always necessary that they have cause and effect relation. Even a high degree of correlation between two variables does not necessarily indicate a cause and effect relationship between them. Reasons for a correlation between two variables: Correlation between two variables can be due to following reasons:1. Cause and effect relationship: Heat and temperature are cause and effect variable. Heat is the cause of temperature. Higher the heat, higher will be the temperature. 2. Both the correlated variables are being affected by a third variable. For instance, price of rice and price of sugar are affected by rainfall. Here there may not be any cause and effect relation between price of rice and price of sugar.
3. Related variable may be mutually affecting each other so that none of them is either a cause or an effect. Demand may be the result of price. There are cases when price rise due to increased demand. 4. The correlation may be due to chance. For instance, a small sample may show correlation between wages and productivity. That is, higher wage leading to lower productivity. In real life it need not be true. Such correlation is due to chance. 5. There might be a situation of nonsense or spurious correlation between two variables. For instance, relationship between number of divorces and television exports may be correlated. There cannot be any relationship between divorce and exports of television. The above points make it clear that correlation is only a statistical relationship and it does not necessarily signify a cause and effect relationship between the variables. Q 4. Briefly explain any two factors that affect the choice of a sampling technique. What are the characteristics of a good sample? Ans: A part of the population is known as sample. The method consisting of the selecting for study, a portion of the ‘universe’ with a view to draw conclusions about the ‘universe’ or ‘population’ is known as sampling. A statistical sample ideally purports to be a miniature model or replica of the collectivity or the population constituted of all the items that the study should principally encompass, that is, the items which potentially hold promise of affording information relevant to the purpose of a given research. Sampling helps in time and cost saving. It also helps in checking their accuracy. But on the other hand it demands exercise of great care caution; otherwise the results obtained may be incorrect or misleading. Sampling Procedure- The decision process of sampling is complicated one. The researcher has to first identity the limiting factor or factors and must judiciously balance the conflicting factors. The two among various criteria governing the choice of the sampling technique: (1) Purpose of the Survey: What does the researcher aim at? If he intends to generalize the findings based on the sample survey to the population, then an appropriate probability sampling method must be selected. The choice of a particular type of probability sampling depends on the geographical area of the survey and the size and the nature of the population under study. (2) Measurability: The application of statistical inference theory requires computation of the sampling error from the sample itself. Probability samples allow such computation. Hence, where the research objective requires statistical inference, the sample should be drawn by applying simple random sampling method or stratified random sampling method, depending on whether the population is homogenous or heterogeneous. Factors that affect choice of sample • The size of the population: If the population to be studied is quite large, sampling is warranted. However, the size is a relative matter. Whether a population is large or small depends upon the nature of the study, the purpose for which it is undertaken, and the time and other resources available for it.
Amount of funds budgeted for the study: Sampling is opted when the amount of money budgeted is smaller than the anticipated cost of census survey. Facilities: The extent of facilities available – staff, access to computer facility and accessibility to population elements – in another factor to be considered in deciding to sample or not. When the availability of these facilities is limited, sampling is preferable. Time: The time limit within the study should be completed in another important factor to be considered in deciding the question of sample survey. This, in fact, is a primary reason for using sampling by academic and marketing researchers.
Characteristics of a Good Sample The characteristics of a good sample are described below: • Representative ness: a sample must be representative of the population. Probability sampling technique yield representative sample. • Accuracy: accuracy is defined as the degree to which bias is absent from the sample. An accurate sample is the one which exactly represents the population. • Precision: the sample must yield precise estimate. Precision is measured by standard error. • Size: a good sample must be adequate in size in order to be reliable. Q 5. Select any topic for research and explain how you will use both secondary and primary sources to gather the required information. Ans: For performing research on the literacy levels among families, the primary and secondary sources of data can be used very effectively. More specifically the primary sources of data collection is suggested in this regard. Because personal data or data related to human beings consist of: Demographic and socio-economic characteristics of individuals: Age, sex, race, social class, religion, marital status, education, occupation income, family size, location of the household life style etc. 2. Behavioral variables: Attitudes, opinions, awareness, knowledge, practice, intentions, etc. 3. Organizational data consist of data relating to an organizations origin, ownership, objectives, resources, functions, performance and growth. 4. Territorial data are related to geo-physical characteristics, resource endowment, population, occupational pattern infrastructure degree of development, etc. of spatial divisions like villages, cities, talluks, districts, state and the nation.
The data serve as the bases or raw materials for analysis. Without an analysis of factual data, no specific inferences can be drawn on the questions under study. Inferences based on imagination or guess work cannot provide correct answers to research questions. The relevance, adequacy and reliability of data determine the quality of the findings of a study. Data form the basis for testing the hypothesis formulated in a study. Data also provide the facts and figures required for constructing measurement scales and tables, which are analyzed with statistical techniques. Inferences on the results of statistical analysis and tests of significance provide the answers to research questions. Thus, the scientific process of measurements, analysis, testing and inferences depends on the availability of relevant data and their accuracy. Hence, the importance of data for any research studies.
The sources of data may be classified into (a) primary sources and (b) secondary sources. Primary Sources of Data Primary sources are original sources from which the researcher directly collects data that have not been previously collected e.g.., collection of data directly by the researcher on brand awareness, brand preference, brand loyalty and other aspects of consumer behavior from a sample of consumers by interviewing them,. Primary data are first hand information collected through various methods such as observation, interviewing, mailing etc. Advantage of Primary Data • It is original source of data • It is possible to capture the changes occurring in the course of time. • It flexible to the advantage of researcher. • Extensive research study is based of primary data Disadvantage of Primary Data • Primary data is expensive to obtain • It is time consuming • It requires extensive research personnel who are skilled. • It is difficult to administer. Methods of Collecting Primary Data Primary data are directly collected by the researcher from their original sources. In this case, the researcher can collect the required date precisely according to his research needs, he can collect them when he wants them and in the form he needs them. But the collection of primary data is costly and time consuming. Yet, for several types of social science research required data are not available from secondary sources and they have to be directly gathered from the primary sources. In such cases where the available data are inappropriate, inadequate or obsolete, primary data have to be gathered. They include: socio economic surveys, social anthropological studies of rural communities and tribal communities, sociological studies of social problems and social institutions. Marketing research, leadership studies, opinion polls, attitudinal surveys, readership, radio listening and T.V. viewing surveys, knowledge-awareness practice (KAP) studies, farm managements studies, business management studies etc. There are various methods of data collection. A ‘Method’ is different from a ‘Tool’ while a method refers to the way or mode of gathering data, a tool is an instruments used for the method. For example, a schedule is used for interviewing. The important methods are (a) observation, (b) interviewing, (c) mail survey, (d) experimentation, (e) simulation and (f) projective technique. Each of these methods is discussed in detail in the subsequent sections in the later chapters. Secondary Sources of Data
These are sources containing data which have been collected and compiled for another purpose. The secondary sources consists of readily compendia and already compiled statistical statements and reports whose data may be used by researchers for their studies e.g., census reports, annual reports and financial statements of companies, Statistical statement, Reports of Government Departments, Annual reports of currency and finance published by the Reserve Bank of India, Statistical statements relating to Co-operatives and Regional Banks, published by the NABARD, Reports of the National sample survey Organization, Reports of trade associations, publications of international organizations such as UNO, IMF, World Bank, ILO, WHO, etc., Trade and Financial journals newspapers etc. Secondary sources consist of not only published records and reports, but also unpublished records. The latter category includes various records and registers maintained by the firms and organizations, e.g., accounting and financial records, personnel records, register of members, minutes of meetings, inventory records etc. Features of Secondary Sources Though secondary sources are diverse and consist of all sorts of materials, they have certain common characteristics. First, they are readymade and readily available, and do not require the trouble of constructing tools and administering them. Second, they consist of data which a researcher has no original control over collection and classification. Both the form and the content of secondary sources are shaped by others. Clearly, this is a feature which can limit the research value of secondary sources. Finally, secondary sources are not limited in time and space. That is, the researcher using them need not have been present when and where they were gathered. Use of Secondary Data The second data may be used in three ways by a researcher. First, some specific information from secondary sources may be used for reference purpose. For example, the general statistical information in the number of co-operative credit societies in the country, their coverage of villages, their capital structure, volume of business etc., may be taken from published reports and quoted as background information in a study on the evaluation of performance of cooperative credit societies in a selected district/state. Second, secondary data may be used as bench marks against which the findings of research may be tested, e.g., the findings of a local or regional survey may be compared with the national averages; the performance indicators of a particular bank may be tested against the corresponding indicators of the banking industry as a whole; and so on. Finally, secondary data may be used as the sole source of information for a research project. Such studies as securities Market Behaviour, Financial Analysis of companies, Trade in credit allocation in commercial banks, sociological studies on crimes, historical studies, and the like, depend primarily on secondary data. Year books, statistical reports of government departments, report of public organizations of Bureau of Public Enterprises, Censes Reports etc, serve as major data sources for such research studies. Advantages of Secondary Data
Secondary sources have some advantages: • Secondary data, if available can be secured quickly and cheaply. Once their source of documents and reports are located, collection of data is just matter of desk work. Even the tediousness of copying the data from the source can now be avoided, thanks to Xeroxing facilities. • Wider geographical area and longer reference period may be covered without much cost. Thus, the use of secondary data extends the researcher’s space and time reach. • The use of secondary data broadens the data base from which scientific generalizations can be made. • Environmental and cultural settings are required for the study. • The use of secondary data enables a researcher to verify the findings bases on primary data. It readily meets the need for additional empirical support. The researcher need not wait the time when additional primary data can be collected. Disadvantages of Secondary Data The use of a secondary data has its own limitations. • The most important limitation is the available data may not meet our specific needs. The definitions adopted by those who collected those data may be different; units of measure may not match; and time periods may also be different. • The available data may not be as accurate as desired. To assess their accuracy we need to know how the data were collected. • The secondary data are not up-to-date and become obsolete when they appear in print, because of time lag in producing them. For example, population census data are published tow or three years later after compilation, and no new figures will be available for another ten years. • Finally, information about the whereabouts of sources may not be available to all social scientists. Even if the location of the source is known, the accessibility depends primarily on proximity. For example, most of the unpublished official records and compilations are located in the capital city, and they are not within the easy reach of researchers based in far off places. Q6. Case Study: You are engaged to carry out a market survey on behalf of a leading Newspaper that is keen to increase its circulation in Bangalore City, in order to ascertain reader habits and interests. Develop a title for the study; define the research problem and the objectives or questions to be answered by the study. Ans: Generally, there is a significant relationship between the race or ethnic group and the language medium of the newspapers. Generally, Kannada newspapers are mostly read by the kannadigas respondents, Tamil newspapers by the tamilians etc. However, there is no significant relationship in the readership of English newspapers whereby they are read by all the ethnic groups. Title: Reader’s habits and interests in Bangalore Research Problem: To ascertain the reader habits and interests and to increase news paper circulation in Bangalore City. Objectives or questions to be answered:
1. Have you read an entire book in the last 12 months? a. Yes. b. No. 2. How much time do you spend reading web pages each day? a. I don’t read web pages. b. Less than two hours. c. Two to four hours. d. Five or more hours. 3. Where do you read? Check all that apply. a. In school. b. On the bus. c. In a car or truck. d. In bed. e. At the computer. f. In the bathroom. g. In the kitchen or family room. h. At the library. 4. Have you ever pretended that you read a book when you hadn’t? a. Yes. b. No. 5. Why do you usually read a book? a. Because I think I should. b. Because it was assigned to me. c. Because I am interested in the topic or author. d. I don’t read books. 6. Have you ever pretended that you read a web page when you hadn’t? a. Yes. b. No. 7. What is the last book that you read? If you haven’t read a book, write “Not Applicable.” 8. Is being able to read is important? a. Yes. b. No.