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SOCW 6301 Week 3 Discussion
SOCW 6301 Week 3 Discussion
Discussion: Formulating Research Questions
Research problems can come from a variety of places. A topic can come up during a discussion with a colleague that motivates you to want to learn more about it. You may have a question for which you cannot find an answer, so you decide to conduct a research study in hopes of finding an answer. You may identify a particular gap in knowledge and be inclined to investigate that gap and close it with the results of a research study.
For this Discussion, consider how crafting a good research question is the cornerstone for designing robust studies that yield useable data. Review the Sessions episode on the Talia Johnson case. Locate two articles authored by the researcher David Lisak on the topics of the undetected rapist and predatory nature.
By Day 3
Post two potential research questions related to the Sessions episode. Consider potential ethical or political issues related to the feasibility of investigating the questions. Evaluate each question in terms of how it might:
- Contribute to development of new knowledge for social work
- Lead to more effective practice interventions
- Lead to social change
- Be useful to other researchers
Finally, explain the criteria you used to decide which sources of information should be included. Please use the resources to support your answer.
Quantitative and Qualitative Research Questions
According to Creswell (2009), quantitative research is a “means for testing objective theories by examining the relationship among variables that can be measured and analyzed using statistical procedures.” Qualitative research, Creswell posits, is a “means for exploring and understanding the meaning individuals or groups ascribe to social or human problems.”
Consider the phenomenon of pain. Ethics committees and institutional review boards do not allow researchers to inflict equal doses of pain on subjects to examine their physiological response. In quantitative research, pain can be measured physiologically by blood pressure, changes in blood chemistry, muscle contractions, and pain scales (which are still subjective, but at least quantifiable). Researchers using a qualitative perspective may ask participants about their experience of being in physical pain, whether being in pain has changed them in any way, or what they have learned from experiencing physical pain.
For this Assignment, consider differences in how you might frame a research question in order to explore it using quantitative or qualitative research methods.
Submit a 2-page paper that highlights one of the research questions you shared in your Discussion post. Design a quantitative research question related to this problem and a qualitative research question related to the same problem. Please use the resources to support your answer.
Note: To access this week’s required library resources, please click on the link to the Course Readings List, found in the Course Materials section of your Syllabus.