An Analysis of Qualitative and Quantitative Data
Is there one right way
to conduct social research?
When undertaking Social research there are two most commonly used methods: quantitative and qualitative; There is often a great divide between the users of qualitative and quantitative methods of research. Put simply, quantitative research uses mathematical principals and it is statistical, therefore it is often viewed as more reliable and valid. On the other hand there is qualitative research which is based on interviewing and finding out the "why" of a particular situation. Qualitative research is interpretative rather than descriptive, is non-numerical and is known for it's credibility and auditability.
A balanced assessment of the two forms of research requires a knowledge of the history behind the two forms of research, an in depth look at what they are and what they both entail as social research and to discover the different methods that can be used within qualitative and quantitative research. We also need to find out the strengths and weaknesses of both qualitative and quantitative data so fair judgement can be made to discover if there is a correct way to undertake social research.
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