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Research Design

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Research Design

Research design is a general plan or ‘blueprint’ that will dictate how the research study is to be performed. The researcher will use essential components such as: type of data needed, cost, time, research objectives and target population to decide upon guidelines to be followed during the research study. A good research design should be simple to ensure it is easy to follow and should be written down on paper. 
 
There are three main types of research design: exploratory, descriptive and experimental (causal). Each research design method has different qualities and can be used in different scenarios. Exploratory design is adopted when attempting to discover information and does not pursue a definitive answer. Instead, it covers the research topic in all levels of depth to greater the researcher’s understanding. Exploratory research design can provide the first step in fully understanding a problem or question but is limited in giving a definitive answer.
 
Descriptive design is performed when answering a specific question, often involving a hypothesis. However, it cannot be used to explain the results or to allow the researcher to understand why the research study gave the answers it did. Descriptive research design, however, is also effective at allowing the researcher to analyse the data to gain a greater understanding of the problem.
 
Experimental design attempts to measure the effect of manipulating the independent variable on the dependent variable. It is better than descriptive and exploratory design in finding solutions for marketing problems. Experimental research design can limit bias as the study allows the researcher to have better control over the independent, dependent and extraneous variables.

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