Research methodology: a step by step guide for beginners

THIS IS a practical introductory text for healthcare students with minimal understanding of the research process. The focus of the text integrates quantitative and qualitative methodologies through the following operational steps:

Planning and doing research.

Formulating a research problem.

Conceptualising a research design.

Constructing an instrument for research design.

Selecting a sample.

Writing a research proposal.

Collecting data.

Processing and displaying data.

Writing a research report.

The content is thorough in its scope. It describes how to: develop a research question, identify variables, process and display data and offers a clear description of research design, sampling techniques and attitudinal scales.

Although the introduction claims to give equal weight to quantitative and qualitative research, the content veers more towards quantitative research and the qualitative appreciation is minimal. Because of this, I would not recommend it to students who wish to engage in qualitative research only, but it works well as a foundation for those wanting to do mainly quantitative work.

The underpinning philosophy of research is similarly limited. This aside, the text is useful because of its clear diagrams and examples, making the book an accessible reference for planning and conducting research.

The book attempts to demonstrate the translation of research theory into practice and is a useful addition to learning resources.

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