Research Methods

Research Methods

  • Descriptive
  •  Comparative
  • Exploratory, Diagnostic
  • Experimental and
  • Historical

Descriptive Research Methods

  • It is concerned with answering the questions.What, Who, When and Where.
  • In a descriptive research hypothesis formation and testing may or may not be involved.
  • Descriptive research, also known asstatisticalresearch


            Examples of this type of research

            • A survey of reference service in children libraries in Tamil Nadu.

            • A survey of the reading habits of housewives in Dakshin Karnataka.

            • A survey of the information needs of geo-scientists in CSIR laboratories.

Comparative Research

            Comparative research is a survey research comparing two entities, phenomena,

            or processes with a view two design and provides a new one having the best

            features of the two compared. In social life, it helps to create an understanding of

            different viewpoints. Comparative religion is one of the examples that have helped

            to create an understanding and respect towards different religions.

  • research describing two or more entities of the same nature, which are compared and contrasted in terms of certain predefined parameters.
  • The ultimate aim is to compare, contrast and design an idea, system or plan having the best available features after correcting the shortcoming of others
  • Comparative research is an applied research
  • In our field S.R. Ranganathan’s classic Prolegomena to library classification (1967) makes a comparative study of some library classifications to propose an ideal theory of classification.

Exploratory Research

  • A rudimentary or preliminary work to study the viability of the research problem for its successful completion and useful results.
  • It is also known as formulative studies

Diagnostic Research :

  • A type of clinical method to investigate the root causes of a problem.
  • Diagnostic research is a problem solving study involving pinpointing the reasons for the problem and suggesting solutions for the same. The steps involved in it are:

            1) Emergence and identification of the problem.

            2) Diagnosis of its roots and causes.

            3) Formulation of possible ways to treat the problem.

            4) Suggesting a possible solution.

Social surveys

Large scale social surveys from a large number of cases to discover the distribution and

interrelationships of social and attitudinal variables

  • Social surveys are descriptive cross- sectional studies done to know the present status of the different aspects of the society.
  • These may cover sociological,economic, political, religious, anthropological, or attitudinal aspects.
  • These may be done in libraries also to present, and evaluate the status of libraries.
  • It may be with regard to the collection, services, staff, or users, etc

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