What Are the Different Types of Scientific Research?
Thanks to scientific research, we’re able to recognize problems, invent solutions, and come up with new ideas in every aspect of life. All types of scientific research begin as hypotheses and observations, until they’re developed into findings, results, and plans for further development.
From medical accomplishments to discovering new ways to construct existing models, in order to improve ourselves and the world we live in, we need to use various types of scientific research and research methods.
What Is Scientific Research?
There are many ways to define research. To put it simply, research includes gathering, organizing, and implementing information in order to understand, explain, or prove a theory or a topic. Even though research is vital in both scientific and non-scientific fields, one of the most relevant and comprehensive types of research is scientific research.
If we were to discuss the history of scientific research, we would have to go back to the beginnings of science and research itself. The earliest developments of these two terms can be traced back to Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia, somewhere from 3000 to 1200 BCE. The modern age of scientific research has seen amazing advances and achievements in the past couple of centuries alone, and it will only continue to grow in the near future.
Scientific research uses a wide variety of scientific models, theories, and data collections to find explanations for why certain phenomena occur in the real world. Whether through experiments, case studies, or a focus group, scientific research can be executed in many different ways. The end goal of scientific research is to broaden human knowledge.
Scientific research is important because it helps us understand how things work. In addition, it further develops various areas of study, such as biology, chemistry, psychology, medicine, and other fields. Moreover, scientific research helps solve pre-existing problems and new ones that might occur in the future. Thanks to scientific research, mere observations and theories can be transformed into practical learning and established facts.
What Are the Types of Scientific Research?
There are many different types of scientific research, from quantitative and qualitative, to mixed and explanatory research. Since it can be classified in numerous ways, the classification mainly depends on the research method, data collection techniques, and of course, the research problem.
Here are some of the most basic types of scientific research:
Quantitative and Qualitative Research
The main distinction of scientific research is between quantitative and qualitative research.
Quantitative research, like the name implies, includes studies based on numbers. Quantitative methods can either imply counting or measuring some type of data. Since this type of scientific research is numeric, its aim is to evaluate the “when,” “where,” and “what” of the research topic or question. It’s mainly expressed in numbers, statistics, and graphs. Quantitative data collection methods include surveys, experiments, and observations. It basically measures numerical data in order to discover patterns.
Qualitative research focuses on the quality of the data, rather than the quantity. This is a type of exploratory and descriptive research, which is why qualitative methods include case studies, interviews, focus groups, literature reviews, and similar.
As opposed to quantitative research, qualitative research aims to investigate the “why” and the “how” of the decision-making process. It’s achieved through organizing, interpreting, and summarizing data. In other words, qualitative research is used when you want to understand textual data, as opposed to quantitative research, which aims to test a hypothesis with the help of numerical data. The aim of this form of research is to get a better understanding of the given topic or the potential issue it may generate. This ultimately leads to a solution, which may or may not be based on empirical data.
Mixed research uses a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods. The mixed method is valuable because it enhances the strengths and diminishes the weaknesses of both quantitative and qualitative research.
Applied and Basic Research
Another important classification of scientific research is between basic and applied research.
Applied research is conducted in order to solve particular issues by using already familiar and accepted knowledge, theories, and principles. This type of scientific research entails a variety of experiments and case studies. It also investigates the relationship between variables. It’s solution-driven since its main goal is to provide a practical solution to a problem that has already been defined.
Basic research is otherwise known as fundamental or theoretical research. The main goal of basic research is to develop new, scientific theories or to alter existing ones in order to expand various fields of science and human knowledge. As opposed to applied research, which is solution-driven, basic research is theory-driven.
Classification research seeks to organize units of data into categories, as well as to demonstrate the difference between those relationships.
What Are the 5 Steps of the Scientific Method?
There are many ways to go about a scientifically based research project. Here’s how researchers and scientists usually conduct research:
1. Ask a Question
No matter the topic, every type of scientific research has to start with a question, whether it’s “why,” “how,” or “what.” Therefore, the first step is to identify the research problem apart from which field of science you’re publishing, arts and humanities, natural science, psychology, etc.
At the very beginning of your research, you are also allowed to make predictions regarding the topic. The prediction can be based on existing theories and knowledge or your own theories.
2. Do Background Research
After you decide what type of information your research study will be based on, the next step is to do background research. This is where you will make an overview of the previously published literature on the topic that you’re interested in. At this point, you’re supposed to gather enough resources and literature to use as references. The more evidence you have, the better chances of proving your theory.
3. Construct a Hypothesis and Collect Data
One of the most significant aspects of conducting your own quantitative research is coming up with a hypothesis that the entire research project will be about. This step includes specifying the purpose of your research, devising a framework research design, and outlining specific research questions.
When it comes to qualitative research, the next step would be to collect data. This can be done through interviews, focus groups, surveys, secondary research, or observation.
4. Test Your Theory
Once you have constructed your hypothesis and collected all the data, it’s finally time to test your theory. You can select the research method that will help you achieve your goal most efficiently. Depending on whether you have chosen quantitative research or qualitative research, or even a mixed method, the next step is to do a study. This can take the form of an interview, a case study, a focus group, a questionnaire, etc.
5. Evaluate the Results and Make a Conclusion
The final step of your scientific research is to assess the results of your work. Once you have proven, interpreted, or classified the data at hand, you need to come to a conclusion and report your findings.
Even if your predictions were incorrect, you could still draw conclusions from your research.
Choose AKJournals to Help Your Scientific Research Work
Scientific research aims to answer, interpret, and analyze various problems, questions, and occurrences in virtually all scientific fields. There are various types of scientific research. Some of the most important include quantitative, qualitative, applied, basic, mixed, and classification.
AKJournals offers journals in various fields, including arts and humanities, business and economics, mathematics and statistics, medical and health sciences, biology and life sciences, and many more fields of research. As a subscriber, you will have access to all of these journals, which would surely help you with your research project.