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Research Methods and Thesis Writing

Research Methods and Thesis Writing
Second edition
Laurentia P. Calmorin
Melchor A. Calmorin
2007 Rex Bookstore, Inc.
Meaning and Characteristics of Research
A. Research- the scientific investigation of phenomena which includes collection,
presentation, analysis and interpretation of facts that links an individual’s
speculation with reality.
- Systematic study of event/trend which involves careful collection, presentation,
analysis and interpretation of facts that relates man’s thinking with reality.
B. Characteristics of Research
1. Logical- based on valid procedures and principles. Systematic examination of the
procedures used in the research enables the investigator to draw valid
2. Empirical- based on direct experience or observation by the researcher.
3. Cyclical- cyclical process in a way that it starts with a problem and ends with a
4. Critical- exhibits careful and precise judgement.
5. Methodical- conducted in methodical process without bias using systematic
method and procedure.
6. Analytical- utilizes proven analytical procedure in gathering the data.
7. Replicability- research design and procedures are replicated or repeated to
enable the researcher to arrive at valid and conclusive results. Replicability of
the study means using of the same instruments, method, and procedure but to
different subjects and venue.
C. Qualities of a Good Researcher
1. Research-oriented
2. Efficient
3. Scientific
4. Effective
5. Active
6. Resourceful
7. Creative
8. Honest
9. Economical
10. Religious
D. Characteristics of the Researcher
1. Intellectual curiosity- undertakes deep thinking and inquiry of the things
problems, and situations around him.
2. Prudence- careful to conduct the research and uses the 7Ms (manpower,
money, materials, method, machinery, moment of time, and marketing) to avoid
3. Healthy criticism- the researcher is always doubtful as to the veracity of the
4. Intellectual honesty- honest to collect facts to arrive at honest results.
5. Intellectual creativity- productive and resourceful investigator always creates
new research.
E. Values of Research to Man
1. Improves the quality of life
2. Improves instructions
3. Research improves students’ achievement
4. Research improves teachers’ competence
5. Research satisfies man’s needs
6. Research reduces the burden of work
7. Research has deep-seated psychological aspects
8. Research improves the exportation of food products
9. Research responds to the economic recovery and austerity measure of the
10. Research trains graduates to become responsible to the economic development
of the country and compete globally.
- Four mandated functions of SUCs: instruction, research, extension, and
F. Types of Research
1. Basic research- A.K.A fundamental research/ pure research, it seeks to discover
basic truths or principles. The results of basic research in theoretical knowledge
have no immediate usefulness or value to man.
2. Applied research- type of research involves seeking new applications of scientific
knowledge to the solution of a problem such as the development of new
system/procedure/ device/ method in order to solve problem. Applied research
produces knowledge of practical use to man.
3. Developmental research- this is a decision-oriented research involving the
application of the steps of the scientific method in response to an immediate
need to improve existing practices.
G. Classification of Research
1. Library research- done in the library where answers to specific questions or
problems of the study are available.
2. Field research- research is conducted in a natural setting.
3. Laboratory research- research is conducted in artificial or controlled conditions
by isolating the study in a thoroughly specified and equipped area.
- The purposes are: (1) to test hypotheses derived from theory, (2) to control
variance under research conditions, and (3) to discover the relations between
the dependent and independent variables.
H. Variable
- Quantity susceptible of fluctuation or change in value or magnitude under
different conditions.
1. 5 Types of Variables
a. Independent variable- the stimulus variable which chosen by the researcher
to determine its relationship to an observed phenomenon (the one being
b. Dependent variable- response variable which is observed and measured to
determine the effect of the independent variable. It changes when the
independent variable varies.
c. Moderator variable- secondary/ special type of independent variable chosen
by the researcher to determine if it changes or modify the relationship
between the independent and dependent variables.
d. Control variable- variable that is controlled by the investigator in which the
effects can be neutralized by eliminating or removing the variable
(Quantities that a scientist wants to remain constant).
e. Intervening variable- variable which interferes with the independent and
dependent variables, but its effects can either strengthen or weaken the
independent and dependent variables.
Illustration (experimental)
Independent variables
Intervening Variables
Pelletes (Feed)
Dependent variables
Survival rate
Illustration (Descriptive)
Independent variables
Academic Rank
Intervening Variables
Age, gende, civil
experiences, values
Dependent variables
Components of Research Process
Problem/ objectives
Theoretical/ conceptual
Review of related literature
Research design
Data collection
Data processing and statistical
Analysis and interpretation
Summary, conclusion, and
Research Problem and Objectives
A. Five Factors to consider if the problem is researchable or not:
1. The problem is existing in the locality or country but no known solution to the
2. The solution can be answered by statistical methods and techniques;
3. There are probable solutions but not yet tested;
4. The occurrence of phenomena requires scientific investigation to arrive at
precise solution;
5. Serious need of the people.
Characteristics of a Research problem
1. Specific
2. Measurable
3. Achievable
4. Realistic
5. Time-bound
Sources of Research Problem
1. Specialization of the researcher
2. Current and past researches
3. Recommendations from theses, dissertations, and research journals
4. Original and creative ideas of the researcher based on the problems met in the
locality and country.
Criteria of a Good Research Problem
1. Interesting
2. Innovative
3. Cost-effective
4. Relevant to the needs and problems of the people
5. Relevant to government’s thrusts
6. Measurable and time-bound
Research Objectives
- “statement of purpose for which the investigation is to be conducted” (Ardales,
- Guide to be accomplished by the researcher.
Statement of Research problem/objectives
- Both have the same characteristics (SMART) but differ in form. The former is
stated in interrogative/ question form and the latter is in declarative form.
- Defines as wise guess that is formulated and temporarily adopted to explain the
observed facts covered by the study.
- A hypothesis guides the researcher that it describe the procedure to follow in
conducting the study.
1. Types of Hypothesis
a. Null Hypothesis (𝐻𝑜 ) is denial of an existence of a trait, characteristic,
quality, value, correlation, difference of the result.
- Always treated in negative form.
2. Alternative Hypothesis (𝐻1 ) is an affirmative of the existence of phenomena.
Theoretical and conceptual Framework
- Some uses both, but it is advisable to use only one.
- Both provide clear explanation regarding the relationship of variables.
1. Theoretical framework-shapes the justification of the research to provide
legal basis for defining parameters.
- It is required to identify the key concepts that are used in the study/ formulate
existing theories which link the study.
- Uses abstract concepts, facts, laws, variables and their relations to explain.
2. Conceptual Framework- presents specific and well defined concepts which
are called constructs.
Example (Experimental Research)
Independent Variables
Lantay and Hanging
Lantay and Hanging
Example (Descrptive Research)
Academic rank
Col./Univ. professor
Associate Professor
Assistant Professor
Intervening Variables
Ecological Parameters
Dependent Variables
Yield of Eucheuma
Temperature, Oxygen,
pH, and salinity
900 kg
700 kg
Intervening Variables
Dependent Variables
Values, Attitude
toward works,
socioeconomic status,
age, civil status,
Outsatnding, Very
Fair, Unsatisfactory
Assumptions – presumed to be true statements or facts related to the research
J. Significance of the Study-presented to convince the screening committee the
importance of the study.
a. Inductive perspective- states the importance of the study from particular to
general. From target beneficiary, researcher, people, community, province,
region and nation.
b. Deductive perspective- from general to particular.
K. Scope and Limitations of the Study
- Includes the coverage of the study area, subject, apparatus, instrument,
concern, duration, and constraints.
L. Definition of Terms
- Two ways of defining the key terms used:
a. Conceptual definition- based on concepts which are dictionary,
encyclopedia, and journals.
b. Operational definition- based on observable characteristics and how it is
used in the study.
Review of related Literature
- Related means the legal base, literature, and studies which have direct bearing
or relation to the present study.
A. Related Legal Bases- are laws and department directives such as circulars, orders,
memoranda, and others which are related to the present study.
B. Related literature- any materials published in book, journal, magazine, novel, poetry,
yearbook, and encyclopedia.
C. Related Studies- published and unpublished research studies segregated into foreign
and local study.
Qualities of a Good Research Instrument
- 3 Qualities of Good research instruments are: Validity, reliability, and usability.
A. Validity- the degree to which a test or measuring instruments measures what it
intend to measure. Validity is always specific in relation.
1. 4 Types of Validity
a. Content validity- means the extent to which the content or topic of the
test is truly representative of the course content. Content validity is
particularly appropriate for the criterion-referenced measure.
b. Concurrent Validity- degree to which the test agrees/ correlates with a
criterion set up as an acceptable measure.
c. Predictive Validity- determined by showing how well predictions made
from the test are confirmed by evidence gathered at some subsequent
d. Construct validity- extent to which the test measures a theoretical
construct or traits.
B. Reliability- extent to which a research instrument is dependable, consistent, and
stable (Meriam, 1975). However, a reliable test may not always be valid.
1. Testing the reliability of a Good Research Instrument.
a. Test-retest method- this method use same instrument and administered
twice to the same group of subjects and the correlation coefficient is
- Spearman rank correlation of coefficient of Spearman rho is the statistical used
to measure the relationship between paired ranks assigned to individual scores
on two variables of test-retest.
2. Parallel-forms method- Parallel or equivalent forms of a test may be
administered to the group of subjects and the paired observation
3. Split-half method- administered once, but the test items are divided into
two halves.
- The reliability coefficient of a whole test is estimated by Spearman-Brown
4. Internal-consistency method- this method used psychological test which
consist dichotomously scored items.
- The method of obtaining reliability coefficient is determined by KuderRichardson Formula 20. This formula measure internal consistency of research
C. Usability- degree to which the research instrument can be satisfactorily used
without undue expenditure (practicality).
1. Factors to Determine Usability
a. Ease of administration
b. Ease of Scoring
c. Ease of interpretation and application
d. Low cost
e. Proper mechanical make-up
Research Designs
A. Four Kinds of Research Designs:
1. Historical Design- scientific critical inquiry of the whole truth of past events
using critical method in understanding and interpretation of facts which are
applicable to current issues.
Major Steps of Historical Research (Good and Scates, 1972)
 Collection of data, with consideration of documents and remains
of primary and secondary sources, bibliographical procedure,
and organization of materials;
 Criticism of the data collected; and
 Presentation of facts.
b. Sources of Historical Research
 Primary sources
o Documents
o Remains
 Secondary Sources
2. Descriptive Design- focuses at the present condition.