A Quick Guide to Quantitative Research in the Social Sciences
Christine Davies, Carmarthen, Wales
Copyright Year: 2020
Publisher: University of Wales Trinity Saint David
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It is meant to be an overview, but it incredibly condensed and spends almost no time on key elements of statistics (such as what makes research generalizable, or what leads to research NOT being generalizable). read more
It is meant to be an overview, but it incredibly condensed and spends almost no time on key elements of statistics (such as what makes research generalizable, or what leads to research NOT being generalizable).
Contains VERY significant errors, such as saying that one can "accept" a hypothesis. (One of the key aspect of hypothesis testing is that one either rejects or fails to reject a hypothesis, but NEVER accepts a hypothesis.)
Very relevant to those experiencing the research process for the first time. However, it is written by someone working in the natural sciences but is a text for social sciences. This does not explain the errors, but does explain why sometimes the author assumes things about the readers ("hail from more subjectivist territory") that are likely not true.
Some statistical terminology not explained clearly (or accurately), although the author has made attempts to do both.
Very consistently laid out.
Chapters are very short yet also point readers to outside texts for additional information. Easy to follow.
Generally logically organized.
Easy to navigate, images clear. The additional sources included need to linked to.
Minor grammatical and usage errors throughout the text.
Makes efforts to be inclusive.
The idea of this book is strong--short guides like this are needed. However, this book would likely be strengthened by a revision to reduce inaccuracies and improve the definitions and technical explanations of statistical concepts. Since the book is specifically aimed at the social sciences, it would also improve the text to have more examples that are based in the social sciences (rather than the health sciences or the arts).
This text is exactly intended to be what it says: A quick guide. A basic outline of quantitative research processes, akin to cliff notes. The content provides only the essentials of a research process and contains key terms. A student or new... read more
This text is exactly intended to be what it says: A quick guide. A basic outline of quantitative research processes, akin to cliff notes. The content provides only the essentials of a research process and contains key terms. A student or new researcher would not be able to use this as a stand alone guide for quantitative pursuits without having a supplemental text that explains the steps in the process more comprehensively. The introduction does provide this caveat.
There are no biases or errors that could be distinguished; however, it’s simplicity in content, although accurate for an outline of process, may lack a conveyance of the deeper meanings behind the specific processes explained about qualitative research.
The content is outlined in traditional format to highlight quantitative considerations for formatting research foundational pieces. The resources/references used to point the reader to literature sources can be easily updated with future editions.
The jargon in the text is simple to follow and provides adequate context for its purpose. It is simplified for its intention as a guide which is appropriate.
Each section of the text follows a consistent flow. Explanation of the research content or concept is defined and then a connection to literature is provided to expand the readers understanding of the section’s content. Terminology is consistent with the qualitative process.
As an “outline” and guide, this text can be used to quickly identify the critical parts of the quantitative process. Although each section does not provide deeper content for meaningful use as a stand alone text, it’s utility would be excellent as a reference for a course and can be used as an content guide for specific research courses.
The text’s outline and content are aligned and are in a logical flow in terms of the research considerations for quantitative research.
The only issue that the format was not able to provide was linkable articles. These would have to be cut and pasted into a browser. Functional clickable links in a text are very successful at leading the reader to the supplemental material.
No grammatical errors were noted.
There are no cultural insensitivities noted.
This is a very good outline “guide” to help a new or student researcher to demystify the quantitative process. A successful outline of any process helps to guide work in a logical and systematic way. I think this simple guide is a great adjunct to more substantial research context.
Table of Contents
- Section 1: What will this resource do for you?
- Section 2: Why are you thinking about numbers? A discussion of the research questjion and paradigms.
- Section 3: An overview of the Research Process and Research Designs
- Section 4: Quantitative Research Methods
- Section 5: the data obtained from quantitative research
- Section 6: Analysis of data
- Section 7: Discussing your Results
About the Book
This resource is intended as an easy-to-use guide for anyone who needs some quick and simple advice on quantitative aspects of research in social sciences, covering subjects such as education, sociology, business, nursing. If you area qualitative researcher who needs to venture into the world of numbers, or a student instructed to undertake a quantitative research project despite a hatred for maths, then this booklet should be a real help.
About the Contributors
Christine Davies, Ph.D