Are you preparing for your doctoral dissertation? Then you’ll agree that it requires serious perseverance. You spent many years on the journey of your professional development and studies. From the sleepless nights to the labor-intensive research and all of the hard work. Everything can be super difficult and daunting. Even with the most outstanding base knowledge, starting a dissertation can be really daunting.
One of the first things that you should understand is that there are different types of dissertations, and this article will focus on three of the main types of dissertations that you should know, especially for a doctoral degree.
This is the first type that you should know, and it basically mirrors qualitative research that a student will help people throughout their academic journey. The research utilizes non-number-based data collection that is done through focus groups, participant observations, and interviews. Also, the data you collect is the main factor that determines whether you model your dissertation according to the qualitative method.
Another key thing to note is that there are different aspects of the qualitative dissertation, and this includes the following:
- Grounded theory
- Narrative research
- Case study research
As mentioned earlier, a qualitative dissertation does not involve numerical data, so the method of collecting data is usually based on participant observation, focus groups, and unstructured interviews. However, the researcher will also need rubrics to help them assess the quality of their findings.
This type of dissertation focuses on numbers, and it uses quantitative research methods to aggregate data so that they can be analyzed and categorized. Apart from the conventional statistical analysis, it’s important to note that quantitative research also uses key strategies that depend on the type of questions asked. This type of dissertation can also employ the use of replication-based studies, data-driven dissertations, and theory-driven research.
When performing this type of research, candidates can utilize quantitative measures that allow them to test different theories, even as they try to make their approach original. Another thing worth noting is that quantitative dissertations focus on post-positivist and positivist research paradigms. The focus is also on experimental, relationship-based, or descriptive designs.
Surveys, data sets, structured interviews and observations, questionnaire, and lab-based testing methods do data collection. In addition, qualitative researchers also measure results based on criteria like construct validity, internal validity, external validity, and reliability.
The hybrid method is also a strategy that is commonly used by most researchers. This is a mix of both the qualitative and quantitative dissertation methods mentioned above. However, this is a relatively new option, and it’s still gaining popularity. The main benefit of this approach is that it offers more credibility and versatility. Also, it’s a more comprehensive approach that makes it possible for researchers to obtain a wider array of information and a larger range of optimization.
Most candidates prefer to collect data first with quantitative methods and categorize the data. After that, they proceed to collect data using qualitative methods and analyze the collected data. With that, they can start drawing meaningful conclusions about the collected data.
The mixed-method approach allows candidates to collect and analyze more data. With this, they can easily increase the scope of their dissertation and reach a more sustainable and succinct conclusion. If you’re using this form of dissertation, one of the most important things you’ll need to do is to make an outline of your research goals and strategy, and this should be as early as possible, especially at the beginning of the dissertation process. With that, you can easily capture only the data that you need.