Fundamental Research Essay

1112 words - 5 pages

Fundamentals of Research in Human Services
Yolanda M. Long
BSHS/382 Research and Statistics for the Social Sciences
March 17, 2014
Michael A. Keitler, MA

Fundamentals of Research in Human Services
This paper will define the term scientific method and how it relates to research in human services. The process to evaluate the research must incorporate steps needed to identify the problem, analysis the data, and finally form a conclusion. The paper will further explore and define the differences between quantitative and qualitative research in the human services field and the scientific method behind the research. An example depicting a quantitative research, qualitative research, and ...view middle of the document...

If after testing the hypothesis the experiment does not produce the same results a modification of the hypothesis must be done and the process will start again.
A review of a low country human services agency in Charleston, South Carolina, Lowcountry AIDS Services, Inc. illustrates the scientific inquiry process as the agency works with clients who have come for testing or counseling. For funding purposes, Lowcountry AIDS Services must provide data to justify grant funding. Therefore, an inquiry or question would be to provide the number of HIV positive clients does the agency serve annually. When a potential client comes to the agency the first step the case manager will do is to identify the problem or reason a person has come to the agency. There are times when a client is confused and unsure of his or her HIV status. The background research or questions may have given the case manager risk factors that may have contributed to the client’s HIV status that could offer a viable hypothesis for treatment. After confirming, through testing, the client’s HIV status the conclusion would be to offer the client referrals for medical treatment and counseling. Because of the overall number of clients seen at the agency the case manager would document the client experiences in a tracking mechanism for reporting to all funding sources (Lowcountry AIDS Services, Inc., n.d.).
Defining Quantitative, Qualitative, and Mixed Method Researches
In our reading quantitative research is used when a researcher has a topic to study, evaluated a specific set of questions, collects data from data subjects, analyzes the statistical information, and the researcher will obtain an unbiased look at the data. Qualitative research, on the other hand, when used by researchers will look at the participants, ask general questions, collect data, analyze the board themes, and obtains a subjective look at the data (Creswell, 2008). The mixed method research is a combination of the quantitative and qualitative research methods. This method is collecting and examining all of the data and reporting on the outcome. Ideally, the mixed method merges, integrates, and links the quantitative and qualitative research methods.
Quantitative research and qualitative research is different because of the results achieved. Quantitative research is used to determine an exact numbers. For example, Lowcountry AIDS Services will report to a funding source the exact number of clients that were tested over a specific timeframe using the quantitative research method. Qualitative research deals with understanding why people perform or do what they do. Using Lowcountry AIDS Services again, the...

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