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Spring 2010 (Jan-June)

MBA – SEM – III

Name : Prashant D. Devale


Contact Number : 9821602706
Email id : pdevale@gmail.com
Roll Number : 510932455
Learning Centre : Karrox Technologies Ltd-
ANDHERI

Subject Code : MB0034


Subject : Research Methodology

Date of Submission at the Learning Centre: 30-4-


2010

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Master of Business Administration- MBA Semester 3
MB0034– Research Methodology - 3 Credits

Assignment Set- 1 (60 Marks)

Note: Each question carries 10 Marks. Answer all the questions.

1. What do you mean by research? Explain its s i g n i f i c a n c e in social and


business sciences.
Ans: - Research simply means a search for facts – answers to questions and solutions to problems.
It is a purposive investigation. It is an organized inquiry. It seeks to find explanations to unexplained
phenomenon to clarify the doubtful facts and to correct the misconceived facts.
The search for facts may be made through either:

• Arbitrary (or unscientific) Method: It’s a method of seeking answers to question consists
of imagination, opinion, blind belief or impression. E.g. it was believed that the shape of the
earth was flat; a big snake swallows sun or moon causing solar or lunar eclipse. It is
subjective; the finding will vary from person to person depending on his impression or
imagination. It is vague and inaccurate. Or

• Scientific Method: this is a systematic rational approach to seeking facts. It eliminates the
drawbacks of the arbitrary method. It is objective, precise and arrives at conclusions on the
basis of verifiable evidences.

Therefore, search of facts should be made by scientific method rather than by arbitrary
method. Then only we may get verifiable and accurate facts. Hence research is a
systematic and logical study of an issue or problem or phenomenon through scientific
method.

Significance in social and business sciences:-


According to a famous Hudson Maxim, “All progress is born of inquiry. Doubt is often better than
overconfidence, for it leads to inquiry, and inquiry leads to invention”. It brings out the significance
of research, increased amounts of which makes progress possible. Research encourages
scientific and inductive thinking, besides promoting the development of logical habits of thinking
and organization.

The role of research in applied economics in the context of an economy or business is greatly
increasing in modern times. The increasingly complex nature of government and business has
raised the use of research in solving operational problems. Research assumes significant role in
formulation of economic policy, for both the government and business. It provides the basis for
almost all government policies of an economic system. Government budget formulation, for
example, depends particularly on the analysis of needs and desires of the people, and the
availability of revenues, which requires research. Research helps to formulate alternative policies,
in addition to examining the consequences of these alternatives. Thus, research also facilitates the
decision making of policy-makers, although in itself it is not a part of research. In the process,
research also helps in the proper allocation of a country’s scare resources. Research is also
necessary for collecting information on the social and economic structure of an economy to
understand the process of change occurring in the country. Collection of statistical information
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though not a routine task, involves various research problems. Therefore, large staff of research
technicians or experts is engaged by the government these days to undertake this work. Thus,
research as a tool of government economic policy formulation involves three distinct stages of
operation which are as follows:

• Investigation of economic structure through continual compilation of facts

• Diagnoses of events that are taking place and the analysis of the forces underlying them;
and

• The prognosis, i.e., the prediction of future developments

Research also assumes a significant role in solving various operational and planning problems
associated with business and industry. In several ways, operations research, market research,
and motivational research are vital and their results assist in taking business decisions. Market
research is refers to the investigation of the structure and development of a market for the
formulation of efficient policies relating to purchases, production and sales. Operational research
relates to the application of logical, mathematical, and analytical techniques to find solution to
business problems such as cost minimization or profit maximization, or the optimization problems.
Motivational research helps to determine why people behave in the manner they do with respect to
market characteristics. More specifically, it is concerned with the analyzing the motivations
underlying consumer behaviour. All these researches are very useful for business and industry,
which are responsible for business decision making.

Research is equally important to social scientist for analyzing social relationships and seeking
explanations to various social problems. It gives intellectual satisfaction of knowing things for the
sake of knowledge. It also possesses practical utility for the social scientist to gain knowledge so
as to be able to do something better or in a more efficient manner. This, research in social
sciences is concerned with both knowledge for its own sake, and knowledge for what it
can contribute to solve practical problems.

2. What is meant by research problem? And what are the characteristics of a good
research problem?
Ans: - Meaning of Research Problem

Research really begins when the researcher experiences some difficulty, i.e., a problem
demanding a solution within the subject-are of his discipline. This general area of interest,
however, defines only the range of subject-matter within which the researcher would see and pose
a specific problem for research. Personal values play an important role in the selection of a topic
for research. Social conditions do often shape the preference of investigators in a subtle and
imperceptible way.

The formulation of the topic into a research problem is, really speaking the first step in a scientific
enquiry. A problem in simple words is some difficulty experienced by the researcher in a
theoretical or practical situation. Solving this difficulty is the task of research.

R.L. Ackoffs analysis affords considerable guidance in identifying problem for research. He
visualizes five components of a problem.

1. Research-consumer: There must be an individual or a group which experiences some


difficulty.

2. Research-consumer’s Objectives: The research-consumer must have available, alternative


means for achieving the objectives he desires.
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3. Alternative Means to Meet the Objectives: The research-consumer must have available,
alternative means for achieving the objectives he desires.

4. Doubt in Regard to Selection of Alternatives: The existence of alternative courses of action


in not enough; in order to experience a problem, the research consumer must have some
doubt as to which alternative to select.

5. There must be One or More Environments to which the Difficulty or Problem Pertains: A
change in environment may produce or remove a problem. A research-consumer may
have doubts as to which will be the most efficient means in one environment but would
have no such doubt in another.
Good research problem having following characteristics

1. Verifiable evidence: That is factual observations which other observers can see and
check.

2. Accuracy: That is describing what really exists. It means truth or correctness of a


statement or describing things exactly as they are and avoiding jumping to unwarranted
conclusions either by exaggeration or fantasizing.

3. Precision: That is making it as exact as necessary, or giving exact number or


measurement. This avoids colourful literature and vague meanings.

4. Systematization: That is attempting to find all the relevant data, or collecting data in a
systematic and organized way so that the conclusions drawn are reliable. Data based on
casual recollections are generally incomplete and give unreliable judgments and
conclusions.

5. Objectivity: That is free being from all biases and vested interests. It means observation is
unaffected by the observer’s values, beliefs and preferences to the extent possible and he
is able to see and accept facts as they are, not as he might wish them to be.

6. Recording: That is jotting down complete details as quickly as possible. Since human
memory is fallible, all data collected are recorded.

7. Controlling conditions: That is controlling all variables except one and then attempting to
examine what happens when that variable is varied. This is the basic technique in all
scientific experimentation – allowing one variable to vary while holding all other variables
constant.

8. Training investigators: That is imparting necessary knowledge to investigators to make


them understand what to look for, how to interpret in and avoid inaccurate data collection.

3. What is hypothesis? Examine the procedures for testing hypothesis


Ans: - A hypothesis is an assumption about relations between variables. It is a tentative
explanation of the research problem or a guess about the research outcome. Before starting the
research, the researcher has a rather general, diffused, even confused notion of the problem. It
may take long time for the researcher to say what questions he had been seeking answers to.
Hence, an adequate statement about the research problem is very important. What is a good
problem statement? It is an interrogative statement that asks: what relationship exists between two
or more variables? It then further asks questions like: Is A related to B or not? How are A and B
related to C? Is A related to B under conditions X and Y? Proposing a statement pertaining to
relationship between A and B is called a hypothesis.

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Procedure for Testing Hypothesis
To test a hypothesis means to tell (on the basis of the data researcher has collected) whether or
not the hypothesis seems to be valid. In hypothesis testing the main question is: whether the null
hypothesis or not to accept the null hypothesis? Procedure for hypothesis testing refers to all
those steps that we undertake for making a choice between the two actions i.e., rejection and
acceptance of a null hypothesis. The various steps involved in hypothesis testing are stated below:

Making a Formal Statement

The step consists in making a formal statement of the null hypothesis (Ho) and also of the
alternative hypothesis (Ha). This means that hypothesis should clearly state, considering the
nature of the research problem. For instance, Mr. Mohan of the Civil Engineering Department
wants to test the load bearing capacity of an old bridge which must be more than 10 tons, in that
case he can state his hypothesis as under:

Null hypothesis HO: µ =10 tons

Alternative hypothesis Ha: µ >10 tons

Take another example. The average score in an aptitude test administered at the national level is
80. To evaluate a state’s education system, the average score of 100 of the state’s students
selected on the random basis was 75. The state wants to know if there is a significance difference
between the local scores and the national scores. In such a situation the hypothesis may be state
as under:

Null hypothesis HO: µ =80

Alternative hypothesis Ha: µ ≠ 80

The formulation of hypothesis is an important step which must be accomplished with due care in
accordance with the object and nature of the problem under consideration. It also indicates
whether we should use a tailed test or a two tailed test. If Ha is of the type greater than, we use
alone tailed test, but when Ha is of the type “whether greater or smaller” then we use a two-tailed
test.

Selecting a Significant Level

The hypothesis is tested on a pre-determined level of significance and such the same should have
specified. Generally, in practice, either 5% level or 1% level is adopted for the purpose. The
factors that affect the level of significance are:

• The magnitude of the difference between sample ;

• The size of the sample;

• The variability of measurements within samples;

• Whether the hypothesis is directional or non – directional (A directional hypothesis is one


which predicts the direction of the difference between, say, means). In brief, the level of
significance must be adequate in the context of the purpose and nature of enquiry.

Deciding the Distribution to Use

After deciding the level of significance, the next step in hypothesis testing is to determine the
appropriate sampling distribution. The choice generally remains between distribution and the t
distribution. The rules for selecting the correct distribution are similar to those which we have
stated earlier in the context of estimation.
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Selecting A Random Sample & Computing An Appropriate Value

Another step is to select a random sample(S) and compute an appropriate value from the sample
data concerning the test statistic utilizing the relevant distribution. In other words, draw a sample to
furnish empirical data.

Calculation of the Probability

One has then to calculate the probability that the sample result would diverge as widely as it has
from expectations, if the null hypothesis were in fact true.

Comparing the Probability

Yet another step consists in comparing the probability thus calculated with the specified value for
α, the significance level. If the calculated probability is equal to smaller than α value in case of one
tailed test (and α/2 in case of two-tailed test), then reject the null hypothesis (i.e. accept the
alternative hypothesis), but if the probability is greater then accept the null hypothesis. In case we
reject H0 we run a risk of (at most level of significance) committing an error of type I, but if we
accept H0, then we run some risk of committing error type II.

Flow Diagram for Testing Hypothesis

4. Write an essay on the need for research design and explain the principles of
experimental designs.

Ans: - The need for the methodologically designed research:

a- In many a research inquiry, the researcher has no idea as to how accurate the results of his
study ought to be in order to be useful. Where such is the case, the researcher has to
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determine how much inaccuracy may be tolerated. In a quite few cases he may be in a
position to know how much inaccuracy his method of research will produce. In either case he
should design his research if he wants to assure himself of useful results.

b- In many research projects, the time consumed in trying to ascertain what the data mean
after they have been collected is much greater than the time taken to design a research which
yields data whose meaning is known as they are collected.

c- The idealized design is concerned with specifying the optimum research procedure that
could be followed were there no practical restrictions.

Principles of Experimental Designs

Professor Fisher has enumerated three principles of experimental designs:

1. The principle of replication: The experiment should be reaped more than once. Thus,
each treatment is applied in many experimental units instead of one. By doing so, the
statistical accuracy of the experiments is increased. For example, suppose we are to examine
the effect of two varieties of rice. For this purpose we may divide the field into two parts and
grow one variety in one part and the other variety in the other part. We can compare the yield
of the two parts and draw conclusion on that basis. But if we are to apply the principle of
replication to this experiment, then we first divide the field into several parts, grow one variety
in half of these parts and the other variety in the remaining parts. We can collect the data yield
of the two varieties and draw conclusion by comparing the same. The result so obtained will be
more reliable in comparison to the conclusion we draw without applying the principle of
replication. The entire experiment can even be repeated several times for better results.
Consequently replication does not present any difficulty, but computationally it does. However,
it should be remembered that replication is introduced in order to increase the precision of a
study; that is to say, to increase the accuracy with which the main effects and interactions can
be estimated.

2. The principle of randomization: It provides protection, when we conduct an experiment,


against the effect of extraneous factors by randomization. In other words, this principle
indicates that we should design or plan the ‘experiment in such a way that the variations
caused by extraneous factors can all be combined under the general heading of “chance”. For
instance if we grow one variety of rice say in the first half of the parts of a field and the other
variety is grown in the other half, then it is just possible that the soil fertility may be different in
the first half in comparison to the other half. If this is so, our results would not be realistic. In
such a situation, we may assign the variety of rice to be grown in different parts of the field on
the basis of some random sampling technique i.e., we may apply randomization principle and
protect ourselves against the effects of extraneous factors. As such, through the application of
the principle of randomization, we can have a better estimate of the experimental error.

3. Principle of local control: It is another important principle of experimental designs. Under it


the extraneous factors, the known source of variability, is made to vary deliberately over as
wide a range as necessary and this needs to be done in such a way that the variability it
causes can be measured and hence eliminated from the experimental error. This means that
we should plan the experiment in a manner that we can perform a two-way analysis of
variance, in which the total variability of the data is divided into three components attributed to
treatments, the extraneous factor and experimental error. In other words, according to the
principle of local control, we first divide the field into several homogeneous parts, known as
blocks, and then each such block is divided into parts equal to the number of treatments. Then
the treatments are randomly assigned to these parts of a block. In general, blocks are the
levels at which we hold an extraneous factors fixed, so that we can measure its contribution to
the variability of the data by means of a two-way analysis of variance. In brief, through the

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principle of local control we can eliminate the variability due to extraneous factors from the
experimental error.

5. Distinguish between primary and secondary of data collection. Explain the features,
uses, advantages and limitations of secondary data. Which is the best way of
collecting the data for research “Primary or secondary”? Support your answer.
Ans: - Primary Sources of Data
Primary sources are original sources from which the researcher directly collects data that have not
been previously collected e.g.., collection of data directly by the researcher on brand awareness,
brand preference, brand loyalty and other aspects of consumer behaviour from a sample of
consumers by interviewing them,. Primary data are first hand information collected through various
methods such as observation, interviewing, mailing etc.

Advantage of Primary Data

• It is original source of data

• It is possible to capture the changes occurring in the course of time.

• It flexible to the advantage of researcher.

• Extensive research study is based of primary data

Disadvantage of Primary Data

1. Primary data is expensive to obtain

2. It is time consuming

3. It requires extensive research personnel who are skilled.

4. It is difficult to administer.

Methods of Collecting Primary Data

Primary data are directly collected by the researcher from their original sources. In this
case, the researcher can collect the required date precisely according to his research
needs, he can collect them when he wants them and in the form he needs them. But the
collection of primary data is costly and time consuming. Yet, for several types of social
science research required data are not available from secondary sources and they have to
be directly gathered from the primary sources.

In such cases where the available data are inappropriate, inadequate or obsolete, primary
data have to be gathered. They include: socio economic surveys, social anthropological
studies of rural communities and tribal communities, sociological studies of social problems
and social institutions. Marketing research, leadership studies, opinion polls, attitudinal
surveys, readership, radio listening and T.V. viewing surveys, knowledge-awareness
practice (KAP) studies, farm managements studies, business management studies etc.

There are various methods of data collection. A ‘Method’ is different from a ‘Tool’ while a
method refers to the way or mode of gathering data, a tool is an instruments used for the
method. For example, a schedule is used for interviewing. The important methods are

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(a) observation, (b) interviewing, (c) mail survey, (d) experimentation,
(e) simulation and (f) projective technique. Each of these methods is discussed in detail in
the subsequent sections in the later chapters.

Secondary Sources of Data

These are sources containing data which have been collected and compiled for another
purpose. The secondary sources consists of readily compendia and already compiled
statistical statements and reports whose data may be used by researchers for their studies
e.g., census reports , annual reports and financial statements of companies, Statistical
statement, Reports of Government Departments, Annual reports of currency and finance
published by the Reserve Bank of India, Statistical statements relating to Co-operatives
and Regional Banks, published by the NABARD, Reports of the National sample survey
Organization, Reports of trade associations, publications of international organizations
such as UNO, IMF, World Bank, ILO, WHO, etc., Trade and Financial journals newspapers
etc.

Secondary sources consist of not only published records and reports, but also unpublished
records. The latter category includes various records and registers maintained by the firms
and organizations, e.g., accounting and financial records, personnel records, register of
members, minutes of meetings, inventory records etc.

Features of Secondary Sources

Though secondary sources are diverse and consist of all sorts of materials, they have
certain common characteristics.

First, they are readymade and readily available, and do not require the trouble of
constructing tools and administering them.

Second, they consist of data which a researcher has no original control over collection and
classification. Both the form and the content of secondary sources are shaped by others.
Clearly, this is a feature which can limit the research value of secondary sources.

Finally, secondary sources are not limited in time and space. That is, the researcher using
them need not have been present when and where they were gathered.

Use of Secondary Data

The second data may be used in three ways by a researcher. First, some specific
information from secondary sources may be used for reference purpose. For example, the
general statistical information in the number of co-operative credit societies in the country,
their coverage of villages, their capital structure, volume of business etc., may be taken
from published reports and quoted as background information in a study on the evaluation
of performance of cooperative credit societies in a selected district/state.

Second, secondary data may be used as bench marks against which the findings of
research may be tested, e.g., the findings of a local or regional survey may be compared
with the national averages; the performance indicators of a particular bank may be tested
against the corresponding indicators of the banking industry as a whole; and so on.

Finally, secondary data may be used as the sole source of information for a research
project. Such studies as securities Market Behavior, Financial Analysis of companies,
Trade in credit allocation in commercial banks, sociological studies on crimes, historical
studies, and the like, depend primarily on secondary data. Year books, statistical reports of

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government departments, report of public organizations of Bureau of Public Enterprises,
Censes Reports etc, serve as major data sources for such research studies.

Advantages of Secondary Data

Secondary sources have some advantages:

1. Secondary data, if available can be secured quickly and cheaply. Once their source
of documents and reports are located, collection of data is just matter of desk work.
Even the tediousness of copying the data from the source can now be avoided,
thanks to Xeroxing facilities.

2. Wider geographical area and longer reference period may be covered without much
cost. Thus, the use of secondary data extends the researcher’s space and time
reach.

3. The use of secondary data broadens the data base from which scientific
generalizations can be made.

4. Environmental and cultural settings are required for the study.

5. The use of secondary data enables a researcher to verify the findings bases on
primary data. It readily meets the need for additional empirical support. The
researcher need not wait the time when additional primary data can be collected.

Disadvantages of Secondary Data

The use of a secondary data has its own limitations.

1. the most important limitation is the available data may not meet our specific needs. The
definitions adopted by those who collected those data may be different; units of measure
may not match; and time periods may also be different.

2. The available data may not be as accurate as desired. To assess their accuracy we
need to know how the data were collected.

3. The secondary data are not up-to-date and become obsolete when they appear in print,
because of time lag in producing them. For example, population census data are
published tow or three years later after compilation, and no new figures will be available
for another ten years.

4. Finally, information about the whereabouts of sources may not be available to all social
scientists. Even if the location of the source is known, the accessibility depends primarily
on proximity. For example, most of the unpublished official records and compilations are
located in the capital city, and they are not within the easy reach of researchers based in
far off places.

6. Describe interview method of collecting data. State the conditions under which it is
considered most suitable. You have been assigned to conduct a survey on the
reading habits of the house wives in the middle class family. Design a suitable
questionnaire consisting of 20 questions you propose to use in the survey.

Ans:- Interviewing is one of the prominent methods of data collection. It may be defined as a two
way systematic conversation between an investigator and an informant, initiated for obtaining
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information relevant to a specific study. It involves not only conversation, but also learning from the
respondent’s gesture, facial expressions and pauses, and his environment. Interviewing requires
face to face contact or contact over telephone and calls for interviewing skills. It is done by using a
structured schedule or an unstructured guide.

Interviewing may be used either as a main method or as a supplementary one in studies of


persons. Interviewing is the only suitable method for gathering information from illiterate or less
educated respondents. It is useful for collecting a wide range of data from factual demographic
data to highly personal and intimate information relating to a person’s opinions, attitudes, values,
beliefs past experience and future intentions. When qualitative information is required or probing is
necessary to draw out fully, and then interviewing is required. Where the area covered for the
survey is a compact, or when a sufficient number of qualified interviewers are available, personal
interview is feasible.

Interviewing as a method of data collection has certain features. They are:

The Participants: The interviewer and the respondent – are strangers. Hence, the investigator
has to get him introduced to the respondent in an appropriate manner.

The Relationship between the Participants is a Transitory one: It has a fixed beginning and
termination points. The interview proper is a fleeting, momentary experience for them.

Interview is not a mere casual conversational exchange: Interview is a conversation with a


specific purpose, viz., obtaining information relevant to a study.

Interview is a mode of obtaining verbal answers to questions put verbally: The interaction
between the interviewer and the respondent need not necessarily be on a face-to-face basis,
because interview can be conducted over the telephone also. Although interview is usually a
conversation between two persons, it need not be limited to a single respondent. It can also be
conducted with a group of persons, such as family members, or a group of children or a group of
customers, depending on the requirements of the study.

Interview is an inter-actionable process: The interaction between the interviewer and the
respondent depends upon how they perceive each other.

The respondent reacts to the interviewer’s appearance, behaviour, gestures, facial expression and
intonation, his perception of the thrust of the questions and his own personal needs. As far as
possible, the interviewer should try to be closer to the social-economic level of the respondents.
Moreover, he should realize that his respondents are under no obligations to extend response.

One should, therefore, be tactful and be alert to such reactions of the respondents as lame-
excuse, suspicion, reluctance or indifference, and deal with them suitably. One should not also
argue or dispute. One should rather maintain an impartial and objective attitude. Information
furnished by the respondent in the interview is recorded by the investigator. This poses a problem
of seeing that recording does not interfere with the tempo of conversation.

Interviewing is not a standardized process: Like that of a chemical technician; it is rather a


flexible psychological process. The implication of this feature is that the interviewer cannot apply
unvarying standardized technique, because he is dealing with respondents with varying motives
and diverse perceptions. The extent of his success as an interviewer is very largely dependent
upon his insight and skill in dealing with varying socio-physiological situations.

The Questionnaire:-
1. How old were you when you learned how to read?
2. Were you a big reader growing up?
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3. Are there any books that left a big impression on you as a kid?
4. Favorite genres? (Do you read mainly fiction or non-fiction?)Do you have a soft spot for honor,
Sci-fi, or romance?)
5. Top 5 favorite authors.
6. Top 5 favorite books.
7. What do you typically wear when you read?
8. On average, how many hooks do you read a month?
9. I-low do you get hold of the books? Do you buy them at a bookstore, visit an online store1
borrow from a friend or family member, or do you use the library?
10. Paperback or hardcover?
11. At what point do you give up on a hook?
12. How do you find about new hooks and authors?
13. Best reading-related memory?
14. Worst reading-related memory?
15. What was the last book(s) you bought?
16. What was the last hook you checked out from the library?
17. on average, how many hours a week do you spend reading?
18. DC) you sometimes read more than one hook at the time?
19. What’s the longest you’ve gone without reading?
20. Why do you read?

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MBA Semester 4
MB0034– Research Methodology - 3 Credits

Assignment Set- 2 (60 Marks)

Note: Each question carries 10 Marks. Answer all the questions.

1. Write short notes on the following.


(a) Null Hypothesis
(b) What is exploratory research?
(c) What is Random Sampling?
(d) Rank Order Correlation

Ans: (a) a null hypothesis is a hypothesis (within the frequentist context of statistical hypothesis
testing) that might be falsified using a test of observed data. Such a test works by formulating a
null hypothesis, collecting darn, and calculating a measure of how probable that data was
assuming the null hypothesis were true. If the data appears very improbable (usually defined as a
type of darn that should be observed less than 5% of the time) then the experimenter concludes
that the null hypothesis is false. If the data looks reasonable under the null hypothesis, then no
conclusion is made. In this case, die null hypothesis could be true, or it could still be false; die data
gives insufficient evidence to make any conclusion. The null hypothesis typically proposes a
general or default position, such as that there is no relationship between two quantities, or that
there is no difference between a treatment and the control. The term was originally coined by
English geneticist and statistician Ronald Fisher.

In some versions of statistical hypothesis testing (such as developed by Jerzy Neyman and Egon
Pearson), the null hypothesis is tested against an alternative hypothesis. This alternative may or
may not he the logical negation of the null hypothesis. The use of alternative hypotheses was not
part of Ronald Fisher’s formulation of statistical hypothesis testing, though alternative hypotheses
are standardly used today.

(b) Exploratory research provides insights into and comprehension of an issue or situation. It
should draw definitive conclusions only with extreme caution. Exploratory research is a type of
research conducted because a problem has not been clearly defined. Exploratory research helps
determine the best research design, darn collection method and selection of subjects. Given its
fundamental nature, exploratory research often concludes that a perceived problem does not
actually exist.
Exploratory research often relies on secondary research such as reviewing available
literature and/or data, or qualitative approaches such as informal discussions with consumers,
employees, management or competitors, and more formal approaches through in-depth
interviews, focus groups, projective methods, case studies or pilot studies. The Internet allows for
research methods that are more interactive in nature: E.g., RSS feeds efficiently supply
researchers with up-to-date information; major search engine search results may be sent by email
to researchers by services such as (3oogle Alerts; comprehensive search results are tracked over
lengthy periods of time by services such as Google Trends; and Web sites may be created to
attract worldwide feedback on any subject.

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The results of exploratory research are not usually useful for decision-making by themselves, but
they can provide significant insight into a given situation. Although the results of qualitative
research can give some indication as to the “why”, ‘how” and “when” something occurs, it cannot
tell us how often” or “how many.”

Exploratory research is not typically generalizable to the population at large.

(c) A sample is a subject chosen from a population for investigation. A random sample is one
chosen by a method involving an unpredictable component. Random sampling can also refer to
taking a number of independent observations from the same probability distribution, without
involving any real population. A probability sample is one in which each item has a known
probability of being in the sample.
The sample usually will not be completely representative of the population from which it was
drawn— this random variation in the results is known as sampling error. In the case of random
samples, mathematical theory is available to assess the sampling error. Thus, estimates obtained
from random samples can be accompanied by measures of the uncertainty associated with the
estimate. This can take the form of a standard error, or if the sample is large enough for the
central limit theorem to take effect, confidence intervals may be calculated.

(d) When we are dealing with data at the ordinal level, such as ranks, we must use a measure of
correlation that is designed to handle ordinal data. The Spearman Rank Order Correlation
Coefficient was developed by Spearman to use with this type of data. The Symbol for the

Spearman Rank Order Correlation Coefficient is r sub s, or the Greek letter rho

The formula for the Spearman Correlation Coefficient IS:

Where 6 is a constant (it is always used in the formula),


D refers to the difference between subjects ranks on the two variables, arid N is the number of
subjects.

2. Elaborate the format of a research report touching briefly on the mechanics of writing.
Ans: The format of a research report is given below:
I. Prefatory Items
• Title page
• Declaration
• Certificates
• Preface/ acknowledgements
• Table of contents
• 1_ist of tables
• 1_ist of graphs/ figures! Charts
• Abstract or synopsis
II. Body of the Report
• Introduction
• Theoretical background of the topic
• Statement of the problem
• Review of literature
• The scope of the study
• The objectives of the study
• Hypothesis to be tested
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• Definition of the concepts
• Models if any
• Design ot the study
• Methodology
• Method of data collection
• Sources of data
• Sampling plan
• Data collection instruments
• Field work
• Data processing and analysis plan
• Overview of the report
• Imitation of the study
• Result: finding and discussions
• Summary, conclusions and recommendation

III. Reference. vIawria1


• Bibliography
• Appendix
• Copies of data collection instruments
• Technical details on sampling plan
• Complex tables
• Glossary of new terms used.

Research report is a means for communicating research experience to others, The


purpose of the research report is to communicate to interested persons the methodology’
and the results of the study in such a manner as to enable them to understand the
research process and to determine its validity. Research report is a narrative and
authoritative document on the outcome of a research effort It represents highly specific
information for a clearly designated audience. It serves as a means for presenting the
problem studied, methods and techniques used for collecting and analyzing data, findings
and conclusions and recommendations, It serves as a basic reference material for future
use. It is a means for judging the quality of research project. It is a means for evaluating
researcher’s competency. It provides a systematic knowledge on problems and issues
analyzed, In a technical report a comprehensive full report of the research process and its
outcome. It covers all the aspects of the research process. In popular report the reader is
less interested in the methodological details, but more interested in the findings of the
study. An interim report in such case can narrate what has been done so far and what was
its outcome. It presents a summary of the findings of that part of analysis which has been
completed. Summary report is meant for lay audience i.e., the general pubic. It is written in
nontechnical, simple language with pictorial charts it just contains objectives, findings and
its implications. It is a short report of two to three pages. Research abstract is a short
summary of technical report. It is prepared by a doctoral student on the eve of submitting
his thesis. Research article is designed for publication in a professional journal. A research
article must be clearly written in concise and unambiguous language.

3. Discuss the importance of case study method.

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Ans: Case study research excels at bringing us to an understanding of a complex issue or object
and can extend experience or add strength to what is already known through previous research.
Case studies emphasize detailed contextual analysis of a limited number of events or conditions
and their relationships. Researchers have used the case study research method for many years
across a variety of disciplines. Social scientists, in particular, have made wide usc of this
qualitative research method to examine contemporary real-life situations and provide the l,asis for
the application of ideas and extension of methods, Researcher Robert K. Yin defines the case
study research method as an empirical inquiry that investigates a contemporary phenomenon
within its real-life context; when the boundaries between phenomenon and context are not clearly
evident; and in which multiple sources of evidence arc used (Yin, 1984, p. 23).

Critics of the case study method believe that the study of a small number of cases can
offer no grounds for establishing reliability or generality of findings. Others feel that the intense
exposure to study of the case biases the findings. Some dismiss case study research as useful
only as an exploratory tool. Yet researchers continue to use the case study research method with
success in carefully planned and crafted studies of real-life situations, issues, and problems.
Reports on case studies from many disciplines arc widely available in the literature.

This paper explains how to use the case study method and then applies the method to an
example case study project designed to examine how one set of users, non-profit organizations,
make use of an electronic community network, The study examines the issue of whether or not the
electronic community network is beneficial in some way to non-profit organizations and what those
benefits might
Many well-known case study researchers such as Robert E. Stake, Helen Simons, and
Robert K Yin have written about case study research and suggested techniques for organizing and
conducting the research successfully. This introduction to case study research draws upon their
work and proposes su’ steps that should be used:
• Determine and define the research questions
• Select the cases and determine data gathering and analysis techniques
• Prepare to collect the data
• Collect data in the field
• Evaluate and analyze the data
• Prepare the report

Step 1. Determine and Define the Research Questions


The first step in case study research is to establish a firm research focus to which the researcher
can refer over the course of study of a complex phenomenon or object The researcher establishes
the focus of the study by forming questions about the situation or problem to he studied and
determining a purpose for the study. The research object in a case study is often a program, an
entity, a person, or a group of people. Each object is likely to he intricately connected to political,
social, historical, and personal issues, providing wide ranging possibilities for questions and
adding complexity to the case study. The researcher investigates the object of the case study in
depth using a variety of data gathering methods to produce evidence that leads to understanding
of the case and answers the research questions.
Case study research generally answers one or more questions which begin with “how” or “why.”
The questions are targeted to a limited number of events or conditions and their inter-Literature
review. This review establishes what research has been previously conducted and leads to
refined1 insightful questions about the problem. Careful definition of the questions at the start
pinpoints where to look for evidence and helps determine the methods of analysis to be used in
the study. The literature review, definition of the purpose of the case study, and early
determination of the potential audience for the final report guide how the study will be designed,
conducted, and publicly reported.

Step 2. Select the Cases and Determine Data Gathering and Analysis Techniques
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During the design phase of case study research, the researcher determines what approaches to
use in selecting single or multiple real1ife cases to examine in depth and which instruments and
data gathering approaches to use. V/hen using multiple cases, each case is treated as a single
case. Each case conclusions can then he used as information contributing to the whole study, but
each case remains a single case. Exemplary case studies carefully select cases and carefully
examine the choices available from among many research tools available in order to increase the
validity of the study. Careful discrimination at the point of selection also helps erect boundaries
around the case.
The researcher must determine whether to study cases which are unique in some way or
cases which are considered typical and may also select cases to represent a variety of geographic
regions, a variety of size parameters, or other parameters. A useful step in the selection process is
to repeatedly refer back to the purpose of the study in order to focus attention on where to look for
cases and evidence that will satisfy the purpose of the study and answer die research questions
posed. Selecting multiple or single cases is a key element, but a case study can include more than
one unit of embedded analysis. For example, a case study may involve study of a single industry
and a firm participating in that industry. This type of case study involves two levels of analysis and
increases the complexity and amount of data to be gathered and analyzed.
A key strength of the case study method involves using multiple sources and techniques in the
data gathering process. The researcher determines in advance what evidence to gather and what
analysis techniques to use with the data to answer die research questions. Data gathered is
normally largely qualitative, but it may also be quantitative. Tools to collect data can include
surveys, interviews, documentation review, observation, and even the collection of physical
artefacts. of data in a documented and systematic fashion. Researchers prepare databases to
assist with categorizing, sorting, storing, and retrieving data for analysis.
Exemplary case studies prepare good training programs for investigators, establish clear
protocols and procedures in advance of investigator field work, and conduct a pilot study in
advance of moving into the field in order to remove obvious barriers and problems. The
investigator training program covers the basic concepts of the study, terminology, processes, and
methods, and teaches investigators how to properly apply the techniques being used in the study.
The program also trains investigators to understand how the gathering of data using multiple
techniques strengthens the study by providing opportunities for triangulation during the analysis
phase of the study. The program covers protocols for case study research, including time
deadlines, formats for narrative reporting and field notes, guidelines for collection of documents,
and guidelines for field procedures to be used. Investigators need to be good listeners who can
hear exactly the words being used by those interviewed. Qualifications for investigators also
include being able to ask good questions and interpret answers. Good investigators review
documents looking for facts, hut also read between the lines and pursue collaborative evidence
elsewhere when that seems appropriate. Investigators need to be flexible in real-life situations and
not feel threatened by unexpected change, missed appointments, or lack of office space.
Investigators need to understand the purpose of the study and grasp the issues and must be open
to contrary finding Investigators must also be aware that they are going into the world of real
human being who may be threatened or unsure of what the case study will bring.
After investigators are trained, the final advance preparation step is to select a pilot site
and conduct a pilot test using each data gathering method so that problematic areas can be
uncovered and corrected. Researchers need to anticipate key problems and evenrs, identify key
people, prepare letters of introduction1 establish rules for confidentiality, and actively seek
opportunities to revisit and revise the research design in order to address and add to the original
set of research questions.
4. Collect Data in the Field
The researcher must collect and store multiple sources of evidence comprehensively and
systematically, in formers that can be referenced and sorted so that converging lines of inquiry and
patterns can be uncovered. Researchers carefully observe the object of the case study and
identify causal factors associated with the observed phenomenon. Renegotiation of arrangements
with the objects of the study or addition of questions to interviews may be necessary as the study
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progresses. Case study research is flexible, hut when changes are made, they are documented
systematically.
Exemplary case studies use field notes and databases to categorize and reference data so
that it is readily available for subsequent reinterpretation. Field notes record feelings and intuitive
hunches, pose questions, and document the work in progress; they record testimonies, stories,
and illustrations which can be used in later reports. They may warn of impending bias because of
the detailed exposure of the client to special attention, or give an early signal that a pattern is
emerging. They assist in determining whether or not die inquiry needs to be reformulated or
redefined based on what is being observed. Field notes should be kept separate from the data
being collected and stored for analysis.
Maintaining the relationship between the issue and the evidence is mandatory. The
researcher may enter some data into a database and physically store other data, but the
researcher documents, classifies, and cross-references all evidence so that it can be efficiently
recalled for sorting and examination over the course of the study.
Step 5. Evaluate and Analyze the Data
The researcher examines raw data using many interpretations in order to find linkages between
the research object and the outcomes with reference to the original research questions.
Throughout the evaluation and analysis process, the researcher remains open to new
opportunities and insights. The case study method, with its use of multiple data collection
methods and analysis techniques, provides researchers with opportunities to triangulate data in
order to strengthen the research findings and conclusions.
The tactics used in analysis force researchers to move beyond initial impressions to improve the
likelihood of accurate and reliable findings. Exemplary case studies will deliberately sort the data
in many different ways to expose or create new insights and will deliberately look for conflicting
data to disconfirm the analysis. Researchers categorize, tabulate, and recombine data to address
the initial propositions or purpose of the study, and conduct cross-checks of facts and
discrepancies in accounts. Focused, short, repeat interviews may he necessary to gather
additional data to verify key observations or check a fact
Specific techniques include placing information into arrays, creating matrices of categories,
creating flow charts or other displays, and tabulating frequency of events. Researchers use the
quantitative data that has been collected to corroborate and support the qualitative data which is
most useful for understanding the rationale or theory underlying relationships. Another technique
is to use multiple investigators to gain the advantage provided when a variety of perspectives and
insights examine the data and the patterns. When the multiple observations converge, confidence
in the findings increases. Conflicting perceptions, on the other hand cause the researcher to use
more deeply
Another technique, the cross-case search tot patterns, keeps investigators from reaching
premature conclusions by requiring that investigators look at the data in many different ways.
Cross-case analysis divides the data by type across all cases investigated. One researcher then
examines the data of that type thoroughly. ‘When a pattern from one data type is corroborated by
the evidence from another, the finding is stronger. ‘When evidence conflicts, deeper probing of the
differences is necessary to identify the cause or source of conflict In all cases, the researcher
treats the evidence fairly to produce analytic conclusions answering the original ‘how” and “why”
research questions.

Step 6. Prepare the report


Exemplary case studies report the data in a way that transforms a complex issue into one that can
be understood, allowing the reader to question and examine the study and reach an
understanding independent of the researcher. The goal of die written report is to portray a complex
problem in a way that conveys a vicarious experience to the reader. Case studies present data in
very publicly accessible ways and may lead the reader to apply the experience in his or her own
real-life situation. Researchers pay particular attention to displaying sufficient evidence to gain the
readers confidence that all avenues have been explored, clearly communicating die boundaries of
the case, and giving special attention to conflicting propositions.
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Techniques for composing the report can include handling each case as a separate
chapter or treating the case as a chronological recounting. Some researchers report the case
study as a story. During the report preparation process, researchers critically examine the
document looking for ways the report is incomplete. The researcher uses representative audience
groups to review and comment on the draft document. Based on the comments, the researcher
rewrites and makes revisions. Some case study researchers suggest that the document review
audience include a journalist and some suggest that the documents should be reviewed by the
participants in the study.

4. Give the importance of frequency tables and discuss the principles of table
construction, frequency distribution and class intervals determination
Ans: - Frequency tables provide a ‘4shorthanj” summary o data. The importance of presenting
statistical data in tabular form needs no emphasis. Tables facilitate comprehending masses of
data at a glance; they conserve space and reduce explanations and descriptions to a minimum.
They give a visual
Picture of relationships between variables and categories, they facilitate summation of item and
the detection of errors and omissions and provide a basis for computations.
It is important to make a distinction between the general purpose tables and specific tables. The
general purpose tables arc primary or reference tables designed to include large amount of source
data in convenient and accessible form. The special purpose tables are analytical or derivate ones
that demonstrate significant relationships in the data or the results of statistical analysis. Tables in
reports of government on population, vital statistics, agriculture, industries etc., are of general
purpose type. They represent extensive repositories and statistical information. Special purpose
tables are found in monographs, research reports and articles and reused as instruments of
analysis. In research, we are primarily concerned with special purpose.
Components of a Table
The major components of a table are:
A Heading:
(a) Table Number
(b) Tide of the Table
(c) Designation of units

B Body
1. Sub-head, Heading of all rows or blocks of stub items
1. Body-head: Headings of all columns or main captions and their sub-captions.
2. Field/body: The cells in rows and columns.
C Notations:
• Footnotes, wherever applicable.
• Source, wherever applicable.

Principles of Table Construction

There are certain generally accepted principles of rules relating to construction of tables. They are:

1. Every table should have a title. The tile should represent a succinct description of the contents
of the table. It should be clear and conscious. It should be placed above the body of the table.
2. A number facilitating easy reference should identify every table. The number can be centered
above the tide. The table numbers should run in Consecutive serial order. Alternatively tables in
chapter 1 be numbered as 1.1, 1.2, 1, in chapter 2 as 2.1, 2.2, 2.3 .., .and so on.
3. The captions (or column headings) should be clear and brief.
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4. The units of measurement under each heading must always be indicated.
5. Any explanatory footnotes concerning the table itself are placed directly beneath the table and
in order to obviate any possible confusion with the textual footnotes such reference symbols as the
asterisk (*) DAGGER (+) and the like may be used.
6. If the data in a series of tables have been obtained from different sources it 15 ordinarily
advisable to indicate the specific sources in a place just below the table.
7. Usually lines separate columns from one another. Lines are always drawn at the top and bottom
of the table and below the captions.
8. The columns may be numbered to facilitate reference.
9. All column figures should be properly aligned. Decimal points and “plus” or “minus” signs should
be in perfect alignment.
10. Columns and rows that are to be compared with one another should be brought closed
together.
11. Totals of rows should be placed at the extreme right column and totals of columns at the
bottom.
12. In order to emphasize the relative significance of certain categories, different kinds of type,
spacing and identifications can be used.
13. The arrangement of the categories in a table may he chronological, geographical, alphabetical
or according to magnitude. Numerical categories are usually arranged in descending order of
magnitude.
14. Miscellaneous and exceptions items are generally placed in the last row of the table.
15. Usually the larger number of items is listed vertically. This means that a table’s length is more
than its width.
16. Abbreviations should be avoided whenever possible and ditto marks should not be used in a
table.
17. The table should be made as logical, clear, accurate and simple as possible.

Text references should identify tables by number, rather than by such expressions as “the table
above” or the following table”. Tables should not exceed the page size by photo stating. Tables
those are too wide for the page may be turned sidewise, with the top facing the left margin or
binding of the script. Where tables should be placed in research report or thesis? Some writers
place both special purpose and general purpose tables in an appendix and refer to them in the text
by numbers. This practice has the disadvantages of inconveniencing the reader who wants to
study the tabulated data as the text is read. A more appropriate procedure is to place special
purpose tables in the text and primary tables, if needed at all, in an appendix.
Frequency Distribution and Class Interval
Variables that are classified according to magnitude or size are often arranged in the form of a
frequency table. In constructing this table, it is necessary to determine the number of class
intervals to be used and the size of the class intervals.
A distinction is usually made between continuous and discrete variables. A continuous variable
has an unlimited number of possible values between the lowest and highest with no gaps or
breaks. Examples of continuous variable are age, weight, temperature etc. A discrete variable can
have a series of specified values with no possibility of values between these points. Each value of
a discrete variable is distinct and separate. Examples of discrete variables are gender of persons
(male/female) occupation (salaried, business, profession) car size (8OOcc, 1000cc, 1200cc)
In practice, au variables arc treated as discrete units, the Continuous variables being
stated in some discrete unit size according to the needs of a particular situation. For example,
length is described in discrete units of millimeters or a tenth of an inch.

Class Intervals: Ordinarily, the number of class intervals may not be less than 5 not more than
15. Depending on the nature of the data and the number of arises being studied. After noting the
highest and lower values and the feature of the data, the number of intervals can be easily
determined.

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For many types of data, it is desirable to have class intervals of uniform size. The intervals should
neither be too small nor too large. ‘Whenever possible, the intervals should represent common
and convenient numerical divisions such as 5 or 10, rather than odd division such as 3 to 7. Class
intervals must be clearly designated in a frequency table in such a way as to obviate any
possibility of misinterpretation of confusion. For example, to present the age group of a population,
the use of intervals of 1-20, 20-50, and 50 and above would be confusing. This may be presented
as 1-20, 21-50, and above 50.
Every class interval has a mid point For example, the midpoint of an interval 1-20 is 10.5
and the midpoint of class interval 1-25 would be 13. Once class intervals are determined, it is
routine work to count the number of cases that fall in each interval.

5. Write short notes on the following:


(a) Type I error and type II error.
(b) One tailed and two tailed test
(c) Selecting the significance level
Ans: (a) In statistics, the terms type I error (also, error, false alarm rate (FAR) or false positive)
and type IL error (i error, miss rate or a false negative) are used to describe possible errors made
in a statistical decision process. In 1928, Jerzy Neyman (18941981) and Egon Pearson (1895-
1980), both eminent statisticians, discussed the problems associated with “deciding whether or not
a particular sample may be judged as likely to have been randomly drawn from a certain
population” (1928/1967, p. 1), and identified “o sources of error”, namely:

Type I (z): reject the null hypothesis when the null hypothesis is true, and

Type II (n): fail to reject the null hypothesis when the null hypothesis is false
In systems theory an additional type III error is often defined:

Type III (8): asking the wrong question and using the wrong null hypothesis.

In 1930, they elaborated on these two sources of error, remarking that “in testing
hypotheses two considerations must be kept in view, (1) we must be able to reduce the chance of
rejecting a true hypothesis to as low a value as desired; (2) the test must be so devised that it will
reject the hypothesis tested when it is likely to be false,”

‘When you conduct a test of statistical significance, whether it is from a correlation, an ANOVA, a
regression or some other kind of test, YOU are given a p-value somewhere in die ouut. If your test
statistic is symmetrically distributed, YOU can select one of three alternative hypotheses. Two of
these correspond to one-tailed tests and one corresponds to a two-tailed test However, the p-
value presented is (almost always) for a two-tailed test But how do you choose which test? Is the
p-value appropriate for your test? And, if it is not, how can you calculate the correct p-value for
your test given the p-value in your output?

(1,) What is a two-tailed test?


First let’s start with the meaning of a two-tailed test. If you are using a significance level of 0.05, a
two-tailed test allots half of your alpha to testing the statistical significance in one direction and half
of your alpha to testing statistical significance in the other direction. This means that .025 is in
each tail of the distribution of your test statistic. ‘When using a two-tailed test, regardless of the
direction of the relationship you hypothesize, you are testing for the possili1iry of the relationship in
both directions. For example, we may wish to compare the mean of a sample to a given value x
using a test. Our null hypothesis is that the mean is equal to x. A two-tailed test will test both it the
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mean is significantly greater than x and if the mean significantly less than x. The mean is
considered significantly different from x if the test statistic is in the top 2.5% or bottom 2.5% of its
probability distribution, resulting in a p-value less than 0.05.

What is a one-tailed test?


Next, let’s discuss the meaning of a one-tailed test If you are using a significance level of .
05, a one-tailed test allots all of your alpha to testing the statistical significance in the one direction
of interest. This means that .05 is in one tail of the distribution of your test statistic. When using a
one- tailed test, you are testing for the possibility of the relationship in one direction and
completely disregarding the possibility of a relationship in the other direction. Let’s return to our
example comparing the mean of a sample to a given value x using a t-test. Our null hypothesis is
that the mean is equal to x. A one-tailed test will test either if the mean is significantly greater than
x or if the mean is significantly less than x, but not both. Then, depending on the chosen tail, the
mean is significantly greater than or less than x if the test statistic is in the top 5% of us probability
distribution or bottom 5% of its probability distribution, resulting in a p-value less than 0.05. The
one-tailed test provides more power to detect an effect in one direction by not testing the effect in
the other direction.

(c) Selecting a Significant Level: The hypothesis is tested on a pre-determined level of


significance and such the same should have specified. Generally, in practice, either 5% level or
1% level is adopted for the purpose. The factors that affect the level of significance are:
• The magnitude of the difference between sample ;
• The size of the sample;
• The variability of measurements within samples;
• ‘Whether the hypothesis is directional or non — directional (A directional hypothesis is one which
predicts the direction of the difference between, say, means). In brief, the level of significance
must be adequate in the context of the purpose and nature of enquiry.

6. Explain Karl Pearson Co-efficient of correlation. Calculate Karl


Pearson coefficient for the following data:
X(heigh 174 175 176 177 178 182 183 186 189 193
t-
cm)
Y(weigh 61 65 67 68 72 74 80 87 92 95
t-
kg)
Ans: Karl Pearson’s Co-Efficient of Correlation: Karl Pearson’s Co-Efficient of Correlation is a
mathematical method for measuring correlation. Karl Pearson developed the correlation from the
covariance between two sets of variables. Karl Pearson’s Co-Efficient of Correlation is denoted by
symbol r. The formula for obtaining Karl Pearson’s Co-Efficient of Correlation Is:

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