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Research according to


Discipline research
Different types of research are often
associated with a specific field or
academic discipline
EG, Law, Public Management,
OR with the technique involved in
the research process.

Historical research
Undertaken when the researcher tries
to give a rational explanation for, or the
causes of a particular event.
He or she also gives a logical
interpretation of the effect of such an
event on the individuals and the society
Original documents are usually used
for this type of research, but artefacts
can also be studied.

Descriptive research

Concerned with information

obtained through
It is what the researcher
observes and describes in
words, and on which his or
her conclusion is based.

Correlational research

Aimed at searching
for a relationship
between different
types of data

Answers are sought to

questions, eg,Is
there a connection
between two matters,
what exactly is this

Evaluation research

Involves the
application of social
interventions, eg,
changing the
conditions under
which people live
to identify the
shortcomings or
usefulness of

Participatory research

Where people are

supposed to benefit
from the research are
involved in all stages
of the research from
planning to

Action research

Takes place when a

particular request for
assistance emanates
from members of the
public who
experience a
particular problem

Analytical research

Appropriate for a study

based on quantitative
data and where
statistical data is
required in order to
determine the meaning
of data.

Experimental research

manipulation of
conditions or
situations in which
external influences
are controlled or

Explanatory research

Entails the
identification of
why something
is the way it is.

Where does legal fall?

Methods &

Methods and Methodologies

The research method or methodology

you adopt will depend partly on the
topic you have selected and partly
based on your own interests and/or
Factors such as the amount of time
and resources that you can commit to
your research are also likely to factor.

A summary of methods!


Qualitative research
Aims to gather an in-depth understanding of human
behaviour and the reasons that govern such
Investigates the why and how of decision making,
not just what, where, when.
Information only on the particular cases studied, and
any more general conclusions are only propositions.
Quantitative methods used to seek empirical
support for such research hypotheses.
Produces descriptive data

Qualitative research
In written or spoken words pertaining to
experience or perception
Usually no numbers assigned to these
Point of view of the of participant
Understanding rather than explaining
Focus on real life experience of people
Eg, Intergroup relations in South Africa

Qualitative Methods
Observation and Participant observation
Observation is the systematic observation, recording,
description, analysis and interpretation of peoples
In participant observation, the researcher participates
to some degree in the lives and activities of the people
being observed
Focus groups

Quantitative research

Associated with analytical research

Purpose is to arrive at universal statement
Mathematical/numerical- counting and measuring,
statistics, percentages
Computational techniques.
Methods experiments, surveys, questionnaires,
Quantitative analysis

Quantitative research
The process of measurement is central to
quantitative research because it provides the
fundamental connection between empirical
observation and mathematical expression of
quantitative relationships.
In layman's terms, this means that the quantitative
researcher asks a specific, narrow question and
collects a sample of numerical data from
participants to answer the question

Quantitative Research