Custom «The Steps of Scientific Research» Sample Essay
Regardless of the research method, any research requires several steps that should be followed. It involves a systematic process of gathering information for analysis that allows researchers to make a conclusion. Any research is a multiple-step process, whereby all stages are interrelated. Thus, to conduct a scientific study, it is necessary to follow the latter in a particular order.
The first step is problem identification and research question development. It may concern the information about health issues and history of persons or something that they identify as a problem (Washington University in St. Louis, 2016). This step determines the focus of research.
The second step is a literature review. The researcher should find out if any research has been conducted on the problem and research question, determine its methods and conclusions. At this stage, it is important to find out more about the problem under investigation and build the foundational knowledge about the respective field (University of Michigan, 2016). In order to do it, the researcher should review the literature related to the research topic.
After the researcher has built the foundational knowledge about the problem, he/she should clarify the latter. At this stage, the one should narrow the scope of study. The information gained during the literature review allows the researcher to clarify and narrow his or her research project. It illustrates the interrelation between the steps of research. The process of clarifying the problem can be started only after all major recourses have been reviewed. Thus, the third step is problem clarification.
The fourth step is defining concepts and terms of research. These are phrases and words used in the description of the latter that often have different definitions. Since they apply to the research, they all should be defined specifically in order to minimize possible confusion in terms of their usage. In addition, it will make terms more understandable to readers.
The fifth step is defining the population or sample. Researches can focus on specific groups of people. Defining the population allows identifying a group to investigate and narrows the scope of research in terms of resources and time. In addition, this step is essential to identify a group of people where the results of research can be applied.
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The sixth step includes developing a step-by-step research plan. It will serve as a road map for the entire research. In addition, it specifies steps that should be completed for research. Thus, the sixth step is planning.
When the plan is ready, the researcher can start collecting data. At this seventh step, actual research begins. Every research includes the collection of data, and it is a key step in providing the information necessary to solve answer the research problem. It can be collected from the literature, through observations in the form of a survey, or with the help of questionnaires. Thus, the seventh step is actual research.
Finally, the eighth step is analyzing data according to the plan in order to answer the research question (Murray State University, n.d.). It is a culmination of research when results of the study are summarized and reviewed. Thus, the final step is the analysis of data to draw a conclusion.
All steps of research are interrelated. Changes made in one step will affect the other and hence the entire research. When the researcher affects one step of the process, he/she should review other stages to ensure that these changes are reflected throughout all process of research. .
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To summarize, any scientific research is a multiple-step process that requires eight necessary steps to be followed. They are problem identification, literature review, problem clarification, concepts and terms definition, population choice, research plan development, as well as data collection and analysis according to the plan. All steps during research are interrelated.
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