Research Design Essay

2402 WordsMay 26, 201510 Pages
Below are the basic elements a research design should contain. The emphasis given to each element will differ depending on the type of research you are undertaking – e.g., long dissertation versus short journal article – as well as the problem / research question you pose. For example if what you are primarily doing is updating old research with new data you may spend most of your time on item #4, explaining why your data is far superior to that used in prior studies. If, on the other hand, your argument is that prior research left out key variables you may spend most of your time explaining your model, item #3. I. BASIC MATERIAL / INTRODUCTION: This material should appear at the beginning of the research paper. For a book or dissertation, the first 1-2 chapters may be devoted to this material. For a journal article or conference paper it will usually cover the first 1-3 pages. 1. What is your research question? You begin with a question, not a thesis or purpose statement. (Experienced scholars may begin talking a bout their “research purpose”, but there will be a question embedded somewhere in their beginning discussion.) Your question must be clear and reasonably precise. It is generally of the form: a. What explains Y (the dependent variable)? E.g., why is it some people vote and others do not? But may also take the general form of b. What is the impact of X (the independent or causative variable)? E.g. Some states have adopted term limits for their legislators. What effect does this have on the politics or policies of the state? Or c. Are X and Y truly related and / or is that relationship causal? E.g., We know from prior research that the state of the economy is related to a president’s popularity / election prospects. Do people really think about the economy as they cast their votes or is the relationship merely a

More about Research Design Essay

Open Document