Answered By: Mary Kaye Hooker
Last Updated: Jun 27, 2018     Views: 341

Qualitative versus Quantitative Study Design (See below for examples and links)

Qualitative research investigates the reasoning behind patterns and the decision making of subjects in a study. It is subjective, unstructured, exploratory and uses inductive reasoning to draw conclusions. Its focus can be broad while it discovers meanings in order to develop theories.  It presents findings with words and narratives rather than statistics. It is considered a soft science.

Quantitative research is the systematic empirical investigation of observable phenomena. It uses deductive reasoning to draw conclusions. Its focus is narrow and precise while it tests theories, recording structured data points, and applying analysis to show cause and effect relationships. It is considered hard science. 


Qualitative Quantitative
Case Study Structured Data Collection w/ Statistical Analysis
Literature Review Survey
Interview or Personal Experience Controlled Experiments