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Basic Research Methods
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This book offers a comprehensive and well-rounded view of research as a tool for problem-solving in a wide range of social sciences. It is built on the foundation of philosophical pragmatism, postulating that the value of knowledge and research methodologies lie in their usefulness in engaging with the real world. The book synthesizes both positivist and non-positivist methodologies. It is meant for students who are undertaking their first research course or project. The techniques, while basic in nature, are used in many masters and doctoral research studies. The book uses engaging language, real-life examples from various subject areas and follows an inductive approach. With the help of this book, from an experiential base, students should be able to build a more advanced conceptual and theoretical understanding of research through further reading and practice. This book discusses a policy-applied-pure-action model of research covering both quantitative and qualitative methods for case study, survey and experimental designs. It pays considerable attention to measurement principles and to data analysis techniques that make practical use of Microsoft Excel for analysis of both words and numbers. It includes a building block approach to writing, as well as the author's thoughts on application of research in the real world. Dr Gerard Guthrie is currently Managing Director of Guthrie Development Consultancy in Canberra, Australia.
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Table of Contents

Preface PART ONE: THE PROBLEM Approaches to Research Research Ethics Research Proposal and Literature Review Research Methodology PART TWO: DATA COLLECTION Sampling Case Study Method Survey Method / Experimental Method Available Data Observation Interviews Questionnaires Tests PART THREE: DATA ANALYSIS Measurement Principles Qualitative Data Quantitative Data PART FOUR: ACTION Social Science English The Report Using the Results Glossary References Index

About the Author

Gerard Guthrie has been Managing Director of Guthrie Development Consultancy Pty Ltd., Canberra since 2004. He is a Doctor of Philosophy in Education. An educationalist with around 40 years of experience, his career has had two main parts: one as an academic, and the other as a governmental aid official. He has worked in universities, aid management and aid consultancy in Asia, Africa and the South Pacific, particularly China and Papua New Guinea, and also, briefly, in Bangladesh, Bhutan, Botswana, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mauritius, Nepal, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Dr Guthrie has a background in development theory and practice and in social science research. He has postgraduate degrees in geography, social science and education, with over 180 publications and papers to his name. His own research has included major projects on migration, teacher education and crime victimisation, as well as aid activity design and evaluation. His publications include: Cherbourg: A Queensland Aboriginal Reserve (1977); Mt. Hagen Community Crime Survey, 2006, co-authored with F. Hukula and J. Laki (2007); Urban Crime Victimisation in Papua New Guinea, 2004-2008: A Synthesis (2008); and The Progressive Education Fallacy in Developing Countries: In Favour of Formalism (2010).

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