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Dissertation Research Methods


Dissertation is a new kind of work for all students. Working on your dissertation you study new information, you learn to analyze the data, to make conclusions and to evaluate the results of your work. As a result, working on dissertation improves your intellectual skills and makes you feel more confident.

One of the most important sections of your dissertation is the methodology section. In this section you should describe your dissertation research methods. For many students this term may be new, but in fact you have been using different research methods while preparing for your classes, gathering some kind of information and analyzing it. Well, now is the right time to summarize your knowledge about all kinds of methods and make use of them. In the rationale, which is the part of methodology section, try to give a clear explanation why you chose these dissertation research methods, but not other ones. Make sure that the methods you chose are relevant to your topic and to the sources of information with which you will work.

As you know, there are various classifications for different kinds of dissertation research methods, but the most common is the one, where methods are subdivided into two big groups:

  • Quantitative research method
  • Quantitative research implies usage of scientific method. This dissertation research method is as precise and objective as possible. You will surely make use of this method if you deal with numerical data or some information, which can be clearly measured.
  • Qualitative research method

Dissertation Research Methods

This dissertation research method is used when you deal with the information which cannot be presented by means of figures. For example, you have to conduct an anthropological survey. Then you will work with people’s opinions and attitudes. As you see, your information will be presented in words rather than in figures, so it is impossible to make a statistical generalization when you want to conclude your analysis.

Of course, dissertation research methods are not limited to the above-stated ones. According to their purposes dissertation research methods are subdivided into two big groups, data-gathering methods (interviews, questionnaires etc) and data-analyzing methods (statistic analysis, semiotic analysis and content analysis).

The right choice of dissertation research methods is very important. Sometimes it is not easy to decide usage of what methods is preferable in your dissertation. If you feel not confident about this question, address your tutor, he will surely help you.

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