Qualitative Research or Quantitative Research - Which is better and why?

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Both qualitative and quantitative research methods have their specific qualities which make them useful to a researcher, however in the course of this short essay I will explain why, for several reasons, qualitative research is better. As both methods operate within different assumptions, it is important to stem criticism for each method 's respective theoretical base in order to adequately judge them. In the course of this essay I will highlight each method 's theoretical assumptions and then I will assess each method by pointing out their positive and negative factors.

The underlying assumption behind qualitative research is that the entire subject needs to be examined in order to understand the phenomenon. Quantitative research
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14)Compare this with a definition of quantitative research: 'The aim is to classify features, count them, and construct statistical models in an attempt to explain what is observed. It is objective - seeks precise measurement & analysis of target concepts. ' (Miles & Huberman: 1994, p. 40)Both of these definitions contain the term objective, which shows that both of the methods share the core aspect of non-interference with subjects: 'Content analysis is often referred to as an unobtrusive method '(Bryman: 2008, p. 289)This key concept lies at the heart of both content analysis and quantitative research methods, it is an obvious similarity. In Shephard 's study of the dynamics between the party, candidates and constituencies he used content analysis on party leaflets to spot recurring trends. His method (content analysis) bears a striking resemblance to quantitative research, for example both methods begin with hypotheses and theories, Shephard choosing to ask whether emphasis in leaflets matches the profile of the constituents. He then made two hypotheses stating that -the higher the unemployment rate the higher the emphasis on jobs and job creation and the higher the home ownership, the higher the emphasis on interest rates and mortgages. Quantitative research methods also start off with hypotheses and theories; therefore it is clear to see that content analysis could be

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