Which Research Designs Will Allow You to Draw a Conclusion About a Phenomenon?
For certain purposes, several designs might be appropriate. These include ethnography and focus groups as well as laboratory experiments. You can find out more about each research design at Chapters 9-12. The following research designs allow you to draw a conclusion about a specific phenomenon.
Experimental studies: These studies isolate cause and effect, and allow researchers to differentiate between treatment effects and placebos. They also limit the effects of experimenters, because they cannot reveal their conditions and can’t affect the experimental group differently. These designs can be difficult to apply correctly.
External validity: Research refers to the generalizability and validity of results. It refers to the ability to generalize results to a population, context, and time period. In general, survey research has more external validity than laboratory experiments, as laboratory experiments use artificial treatments and strong controls on extraneous factors, making them less likely to be generalizable to real-life settings.
Two-group design. This design compares treatment effects on two groups. However, it can have confounding consequences. A two-group study may show that the treatment group has a higher mortality rate compared to the control group. It is important to note that both groups must be identical.
Association studies: These studies are not suitable for causality studies. Although association studies don’t distinguish between cause and effect, they allow researchers to compare two groups and determine if the conditions are causal. If a relationship isn’t clear, the association study will fail to prove cause-and-effect.
Cohort comparison: This research design involves comparing two groups of people with the same characteristics. One group will have been exposed to the agent of interest, while the other group has not. The main disadvantage of this research design is that it is difficult to control for confounding factors. These variables must be controlled carefully to ensure reliability.
Random sample: A random sample of people is hard to conduct and often impossible in many cases. A large number of cases of a condition or disease may go undiagnosed or not detected. In addition, different countries or doctors may have different disease classifications. Therefore, researchers usually use samples of patients. Random sample can be problematic because it is difficult to choose the controls.