Research methods key terms

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Data

Information collected as part of a research project

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Primary data

New data produced by the reasearcher for the research project

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Secondary data

Data which has already been produced which can be used by the researcher

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Quantitative data

Numerical data - data using numbers

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Qualitative data

Data which uses words/opinions rather than numbers

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Validity

Data which represents a true or accurate description or measurment 

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Reliability

When different researchers using the same methods obtain the same results

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Interpretivism

An approach which focuses on the meanings and definitions which guide and direct behaviour

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Positivism

An approach which attempts to explain behaviour in terms of cause and effect relationships

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Objectivity

Lack of bias or prejudice but instead results based on a fair research project

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Subjectivity

An investigation/ research project which is bias rather than neutral

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Representativness

How representative the data is for the whole situation

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Cause and effect

Cause and effect is a relationship between events or things, where one is the result of the other or others. This is a combination of action and reaction.

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Correlation

A measurement of the strength of the relationship between two or more variables

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Generalisability

Generalisability describes the extent to which research findings can be applied to settings other than that in which they were originally tested.

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Bias

Inclination or prejudice for or against one person or group, especially in a way considered to be unfair.

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(PET)

Practical 

Ethical

Theoretical

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Sample

A selection from the possible research selection

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Verstehen

Empathic understanding of human behaviour

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