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❶Larry Laudan [29] has also made two important contributions to the debate.




It was extremely helpful! Holistic and very useful materials. I must confess that this post helped to lift the burden of understanding this process few hours to the before submission of my Mphil-PhD transfer report.

This is absolutely resourceful Patel. Presented in such a manner that a layman can understand this process. Thanks once again as you have just saved a brother. Thanks for this article and the youtube video. Breaking the concepts down as you have done has really helped grasp these concepts as I commence my PhD studies.

The work is superb. It has assisted me great deal. Great site to make sense of big words in simple terms. Thank you for the insight and simplicity of approach. Thank you everyone for your lovely comments. I am truly pleased to hear this article has been useful to so many of you! Wishing you all the best with your research endeavors. Thanks Salma, this was helpful, easy to understand and interesting above all.

The presentation simplifies everything about research. I really appreciate your great effort for helping students who have been facing challenge with research. Can you use the ontology and epistemology at the same time in the dissertation? Example say ontology of power is socially constructed and my epistemology to explain power is what? You would normally make reference to both Ontology and Epistemology in the thesis.

I am not sure if the example you have given is correct though. So ontology is a topic and epistemology finding how you arrive with the knowledge. Ontology can be positivist or non-positivist, subjective and objective.

Very useful, You made this so simple. Well done and thanks for relieving me of some of the stress. Can i only use the quantitative research approach while following the pragmatism paradigm. Thanks very much for this — after reading many text books and articles and still feeling lost, this was super helpful!! Is it in the Analysis part of your methods? Or is it in Design as it is supposed to influence your whole study?

Any recommendations or thoughts would be much appreciated! Hi Natalie, I have usually seen it reported in the methodology chapter — that is also where I placed mine. I hope that helps. Your information is very useful. I have really enjoyed reading it. I have little understanding of ontoloy and epistemology now. Hello,thank you so much saima,i am very happy that i found it the meaning of research paradigm.

God bless you saima patel!!!! Thank you for helping us to know critical things in precise ;concise; and simple manner. How ever, I would like forward one question for you.

Is there an instance in which two or more research paradigm may likely included in single research? Hi, Thank you so much for this. I would like to ask something: Thank you very much. Thank you so much. Thank you so much for creating this post Salma! Thanks so much salma for sharing the very useful information. I have more learn about various types of research paradigm.

Again thanks for sharing us. P, thank you so much for this explanation! Glad to know I have some place to go to for clarity. I wish all reviewers would read your article it is useful and clear. I certainly will keep it in mind for my own future reviews. Hi, thanks for the information. I have a question that maybe you or someone can help me with. If symbolic interactionism is influenced by pragmatism, how did it end up being a interpretist theoretical perspective?

I get that pragmatism states to use the best methods possible, but is there any more information on this? Many thanks in advance. This is a clear, logical post that provides explanation in an easily accessible fashion.

I am currently writing my Methods chapter and was struggling to understand a lot of the philosophical underpinnings piece. What you have provided here is very clear and comprehensive. Thank you for sharing. I just wanted to say Thank you! Finally, someone who can explain all the jargon simply. I am so much better equipped both in my personal studies and in my academic career. Salma, I have shared this with many researchers and students and keep coming back to it. It is really an invaluable post and you have done the academic community a great service in sharing it.

Just wanting to say thank you. That was extremely helpful. It is just so good! I am a PhD candidate and return to this page time and again. Thank you for putting it together. Thank you for this very useful information. Please anyone, help me to understand that, where is the definition of Paradigm mentioned in the book of Kuhn Salma, Thank you so much for your time, effort and sharing your knowledge.

Your website is invaluable and has really helped me feel confident about starting my thesis, after feeling completely lost and hopeless. Ideally I should be able to clearly articulate to others what my research paradigm is, though I often find myself oscillating between different poles depending on the day of the […]. A well written article on the paradigms of research in social science. I found many insights regarding the topic. The tabular form is much interesting and comprehensive.

This has been fantastic and has saved me from losing my mind. The detail is clear, simple and understandable. I thank you for this. The diagram below explains the above terms and the relationship between them: Why is it important? Which research paradigm does my research belong to? In really simple terms, the three most common paradigms are explained below and are shown in this epistemology diagram too, taken from here: Positivists believe that there is a single reality, which can be measured and known, and therefore they are more likely to use quantitative methods to measure and this reality.

Constructivists believe that there is no single reality or truth, and therefore reality needs to be interpreted, and therefore they are more likely to use qualitative methods to get those multiple realities.

Pragmatists believe that reality is constantly renegotiated, debated, interpreted, and therefore the best method to use is the one that solves the problem The table below which I created gives a more detailed overview of each paradigm and contains subjectivism and critical too , and your own research paradigm could very well sit in between one of the paradigms.

Where does most social science research sit? According to Eddie , and quoting directly, most social science sits into the following: A more traditional experimental quantitative approach, which sees social reality as a set of facts to be known for all time by measuring people in the laboratory; 2. What impact will my chosen paradigm have on my research?

Let me give you an example of an interview based research that is constructivist: Useful reading and references Texts I found useful: Blog posts that were useful: You may also like.

Profile cancel Sign in with Twitter Sign in with Facebook. Changing direction a little … Salma Patel. View November 30, View May 31, View October 13, View October 28, View November 1, View November 14, View November 16, View November 18, View November 26, View November 27, View November 28, View December 16, Dear Salma, I found it very useful and learn lots out of it.

View December 20, View December 31, Hi Salma Thank you so much for your sharing such an informative information, it was very helpful for me. Or, are you a relativist? You believe that knowledge is a social reality, value-laden and it only comes to light through individual interpretation? Are we part of that knowledge or are we external to it? Your view will frame your interaction with what you are researching and will depend on your ontological view.

Your approach, for example, will be objective if you see knowledge governed by the laws of nature or subjective if you see knowledge as something interpreted by individuals. This in turn affects your methodology. Methodology refers to how you go about finding out knowledge and carrying out your research. It is your strategic approach, rather than your techniques and data analysis Wainright, Some examples of such methods are:.

Now you may find it useful to read the Wikipedia articles and their related links on the following key words: In this exercise, match the following concepts to the following paradigms: Each paradigm can be used more than once.

Below are a few examples:. The next section considers why philosophy is important before asking you to consider your own research paradigms. Getting Started as a Researcher. The aim of post graduate research. Why is philosophy important? How does data become knowledge? Working with your supervisor. What happens to your research? References and further reading. Time to spend on this section: Having read about the concepts paradigm, epistemology, ontology and methodology you will begin to see how our view of the knowledge and the world affects how we plan and carry out research.

You may have noticed that different disciplines have a different view of how research should be conducted.


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I have put together this post to explain what a research paradigm is, which includes ontology, epistemology, theoretical framework and methodology, and why it is important for your research or PhD.

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Research paradigms and research methods Each of the paradigms discussed above has definite research methods which can be used in carrying out scientific investigation. Positivism which emphasizes objectivist approach to studying social phenomena gives importance to research methods focusing on quantitative analysis, surveys, experiments and the like.

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Describing something as a ‘research paradigm’ means that it is an established model, accepted by a substantial number of people in aresearch community. For example, tt could be argued that positivism and interpretivism are (rival) paradigms of research within sociology. Each academic discipline may have its own research paradigms. The most quoted definition of paradigm is Thomas Kuhn's (, ) concept in The Nature of Science Revolution, i.e. paradigm as the underlying assumptions and intellectual structure upon which research and development in a field of inquiry is based.

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Research methods refers to the more practical issues of choosing an appropriate research design – perhaps an experiment or a survey – to answer a research question, and 5/5(18). research methodologies and methods that are often presented as competing paradigms and therefore as against each other. This paper is a humble attempt to discuss and clarify research.