Qualitative vs Quantitative

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Published on 12 Mar 2012
Department
Professor
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of 2
Qualitative Data
Quantitative Data
- direction of theorizing: inductive
- relies on interpretive/critical social science
- emphasizes conducting detailed examinations of cases arising in natural
flow of social life
- conceptualization largely determined by data
- deviant case sampling (nonrandom sample where researcher selects
unusual or nonconforming cases purposely as a way to provide insight
into social processes or a setting)
- information in forms of words, pictures, sounds, visuals (soft data)
- used in exploratory research & descriptive research (purpose)
- used in case-studies research (time dimension)
- most closely aligned with interpretive and critical paradigms
- research is more non-linear and cyclical paradigms (purpose is to
construct meaning)
- typical research questions:
- - - how did a certain condition or social situation originate?
- - - how is a condition/situation maintained?
- examine social processes and cases in their social context
- conceptualization and operationalization occur simultaneously with data
collection and preliminary data analysis
- social context is critical
- uses ideal types
- direction of theorizing: deductive
- relies on positivist approach to social science
- emphasizes precisely measuring variables and testing hypotheses
- probability sampling is used
- goal of research: draw representative sample from huge number of cases
to intensely study sampled cases
- information in forms of numbers (hard data)
- used in descriptive research & explanatory research
- meta-analysis overview of existing evidence
- research follow more linear path
Qualitative Data
Quantitative Data
Design Issues
- emphasizes social context for understanding social world
- time is essential
Process of operationalization
- operationalization comes before conceptualization
- not all use similar hard and fast structure copy
Data-collection technique
- qualitative interview
- field research
- focus group
- content analysis
- historical-comparative research
Design Issues
- intervening variables
- null hypothesis
- alternative hypothesis
- ecological fallacy
- reductionism
- Simpson’s paradox
- tautology
- teleology
Process of operationalization
- follows abstract construct to concrete measures
- tends to follow similar structure
Data-collection technique
- experimental research
- survey research
- context analysis
- existing statistics research
Levels of management
- Nominal
- Ordinal
- Interval
- Ratio

Document Summary

Relies on positivist approach to social science. Emphasizes precisely measuring variables and testing hypotheses. Goal of research: draw representative sample from huge number of cases to intensely study sampled cases. Information in forms of numbers (hard data) Used in descriptive research & explanatory research. Emphasizes conducting detailed examinations of cases arising in natural flow of social life. Deviant case sampling (nonrandom sample where researcher selects unusual or nonconforming cases purposely as a way to provide insight into social processes or a setting) Information in forms of words, pictures, sounds, visuals (soft data) Used in exploratory research & descriptive research (purpose) Most closely aligned with interpretive and critical paradigms. Research is more non-linear and cyclical paradigms (purpose is to construct meaning) Examine social processes and cases in their social context. Conceptualization and operationalization occur simultaneously with data collection and preliminary data analysis. Emphasizes social context for understanding social world. Not all use similar hard and fast structure copy.