Key Study Material of Research Aptitude For UGC NET Exam-2

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In Second part of this article we will continue to see important key facts for research aptitude.

LAYOUT OF A RESEARCH REPORT / PH.D. THESIS / M.PHIL. DISSERTATION

The various frameworks can be used depending on the content of the report, but generally the same rules apply. Introduction, method, results and discussion with references or bibliography at the end, and an abstract at the beginning could form the framework. But the most used and followed report structure is are as follow:

  • TITLE PAGE :- Title of project, Sub–title (where appropriate), Date, Author, Organization, Logo
  • BACKGROUND:– History(if any) behind project
  • ACKNOWLEDGEMENT:- Author thanks people and organization who helped during
    the project
  • SUMMARY(sometimes called abstract of the synopsis) :- A condensed version of a report – outlines salient points, emphasizes main conclusions and (where appropriate) the main recommendations. N.B this is often difficult to write and it is suggested that you write it last.
  • LIST OF CONTENTS:- An at- a – glance list that tells the reader what is in the report and what page number(s) to find it on.
  • LIST OF TABLES :- As above, specifically for tables.
  • LIST OF APPENDICES :- As above, specifically for appendices.
  • INTRODUCTION:- Author sets the scene and states his/ her intentions.
  • AIMS AND OBJECTIVES AIMS:- – general aims of the audit/ project, broad statement
    of intent.
  • OBJECTIVES :- specific things expected to do/deliver(e.g. expected outcomes)
  • METHOD:- Work steps; what was done – how, by whom, when?
  • RESULT/FINDINGS:- Honest presentation of the findings, whether these were as expected or not. Give the facts, including any inconsistencies or difficulties encountered
  • DISCUSSION:- Explanation of the results.( you might like to keep the SWOT analysis in mind and think about your project’s strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats, as you write)
  • CONCLUSIONS:- The author links the results/ findings with the points made in the introduction and strives to reach clear, simply stated and unbiased conclusions. Make sure they are fully supported by evidence and arguments of the main body of your audit/project.
  • RECOMMENDATIONS:- The author states what specific actions should be taken, by whom and why. They must always be linked to the future and should always be realistic. Don’t make them unless asked to.
  • REFERENCES:- A section of a report, which provides full details of publications mentioned in the text, or from which extracts have been quoted.
  • APPENDIX :- The purpose of an appendix is to supplement the information contained in the main body of the report.
Purpose of Research Report
  • Why am I writing this report? Do I want to inform/ explain/ persuade, or indeed all of these.
  • Who is going to read this report? Managers/ academicians/ researchers! What do they already
    know? What do they need to know? Do any of them have certain attitudes or prejudices?
  • What resources do we have? Do I have access to a computer? Do I have enough time? Can
    any of my colleagues help?
  • Think about the content of your report – what am i going to put in it? What are my main
    themes? How much should be the text, and how much should be the illustrations?

 

Overview of the framework of report

There are at least 3 distinct report writing styles that can be applied by students of Business
Studies. They are called:
1. Conservative
2. Key points
3. Holistic

  • Conservative Style
    • Essentially, the conservative approach takes the best structural elements from essay writing andintegrates these with appropriate report writing tools. Thus, headings are used to deliberate upon
      different sections of the answer. In addition, the space is well utilized by ensuring that each
      paragraph is distinct (perhaps separated from other paragraphs by leaving two blank lines in
      between).
  •  Key Point Style
    • This style utilizes all of the report writing tools and is thus more overtly ‘report-looking’. Use of
      headings, underlining, margins, diagrams and tables are common. Occasionally reporting might
      even use indentation and dot points. The important thing to remember is that the tools should be
      applied in a way that adds to the report. The question must be addressed and the tools applied
      should assist in doing that. An advantage of this style is the enormous amount of information that
      can be delivered relatively quickly.
  • Holistic Style
    • The most complex and unusual of the styles, holistic report writing aims to answer the question
      from a thematic and integrative perspective. This style of report writing requires the researcher to
      have a strong understanding of the course and is able to see which outcomes are being targeted by
      the question.
Types of Sampling

Types of Sampling

We may then consider different types of probability samples. Although there are a number of different methods that might be used to create a sample, they generally can be grouped into one of two categories:probability samples or non-probability samples.

Probability Samples

The idea behind this type is random selection. More specifically, each sample from the population of interest has a known probability of selection under a given sampling scheme. There are four categories of probability samples described below

Nonprobability Sampling

Social research is often conducted in situations where a researcher cannot select the kinds of probability samples used in large-scale social surveys. For example, say you wanted to study homelessness – there is no list of homeless individuals nor are you likely to create such a list. However, you need to get some kind of a sample of respondents in order to conduct your research. To gather such a sample, you would likely use some form of non-probability sampling.

To reiterate, the primary difference between probability methods of sampling and non-probability methods is that in the latter you do not know the likelihood that any element of a population will be selected for study.

There are four primary types of non-probability sampling methods:

  • Availability Sampling
  • Quota Sampling

  • Purposive Sampling

  • Snowball Sampling

 

Discuss sampling with merits and demerits

According to Rosander,

“The sample has many advantages over a census or complete enumeration. If carefully designed, the sample is not only considerably cheaper but may give results which are just accurate and sometimes more accurate than those of a census. Hence a carefully designed sample may actually be better than a poorly planned and executed census.”
Though sampling is not new, the sampling theory has been developed recently. People knew or Though sampling is not new, the sampling theory has been developed recently. People knew or not but they have been using the sampling technique in their day to day life.

For example a house wife tests a small quantity of rice to see whether it has been well-cooked and gives the generalized result about the whole rice boiling in the vessel. The result arrived at is most of the times 100% correct.

Merits of sampling are:

  • It saves time: Sampling method of data collection saves time because fewer items are collected and processed.
    When the results are urgently required, this method is very helpful.
  • It reduces cost: Since only a few and selected items are studied in sampling, there is reduction in cost of money
    and reduction in terms of man hours.
  • More reliable results can be obtained:Through sampling, more reliable results can be obtained because
    • there are fewer chances of sampling statistical errors. If there is sampling error, it is possible to estimate and control the results.
    • Highly experienced and trained persons can be employed for scientific processing and
      analyzing of relatively limited data and they can use their high technical knowledge and get more
      accurate and reliable results.
  • It provides more detailed information: As it saves time, money and labor, more detail information can be collected in a sample survey.
  • Sometimes only sampling method to depend upon: Sometimes it so happens that one has to depend upon sampling method alone because if the population under study is finite, sampling method is the only method to be used.
    • For example, if someone’s blood has to be examined, it will become fatal to take all the blood out from the body and study depending upon the total enumeration method.
  • Administrative convenience: The organization and administration of sample survey are easy for the reasons which have been discussed earlier.
  • More scientific:Since the methods used to collect data are based on scientific theory and results obtained can be tested, sampling is a more scientific method of collecting data.

Demerits of sampling are:

  • Illusory conclusion: If a sample enquiry is not carefully planned and executed, the conclusions may be inaccurate and misleading.
  • Sample Not Representative: To make the sample representative is a difficult task. If a representative sample is taken from the universe, the result is applicable to the whole population. If the sample is not representative of
    the universe the result may be false and misleading.
  • Lack Of Experts: As there are lack of experts to plan and conduct a sample survey, its execution and analysis, and its results would be Unsatisfactory and not trustworthy.
  • Sometimes More Difficult Than Census Method: Sometimes the sampling plan may be complicated and requires more money, labor and time than a census method.
  • Personal Bias: There may be personal biases and prejudices with regard to the choice of technique and drawing
    of sampling units.
  • Choice Of Sample Size: If the size of the sample is not appropriate then it may lead to untrue characteristics of the population.
  • Conditions Of Complete Coverage: If the information is required for each and every item of the universe, then a complete enumeration survey is better.
Reasons behind sampling errors

 

“In statistics the word error is used to denote the difference between the true value and the estimated or approximated value. This error would always be there no matter that the sample is drawn at random and that it is highly representative.”

This error is attributed to fluctuations of sampling and is called sampling error. Sampling error exist due to the fact that only a sub set of the population has been used to estimate the population parameters and draw inferences about
the population.

Sampling errors are of two types: Biased Errors and Unbiased Errors

Biased Errors:
The errors that occur due to a bias of prejudice on the part of the informant or enumerator in selecting, estimating measuring instruments are called biased errors. Suppose for example, the enumerator uses the deliberate sampling method in the place of simple random sampling method, then it is called biased errors. These errors are cumulative in nature and increase when the sample size also increases. These errors arise due to defect in the methods of collection of data, defect in the method of organization of data and defect in the method of analysis of data.

Unbiased Errors:

Errors which occur in the normal course of investigation or enumeration on account of chance are called unbiased errors. They may arise accidentally without any bias or prejudice. These errors occur due to faulty planning of statistical investigation. To avoid these errors, the statistician must take proper precaution and care in using the correct measuring instrument. He must see that the enumerators are also not biased. Unbiased errors can
be removed with the proper planning of statistical investigations.

Both these errors should be avoided by the statisticians.
Sampling errors occur primarily due to the following reasons:

  • Faulty selection of the sample: Some of the bias is introduced by the use of defective sampling technique for the selection of a sample e.g. Purposive or judgment sampling in which the investigator deliberately selects a representative sample to obtain certain results. This bias can be easily overcome by adopting the
    technique of simple random sampling.
  • Substitution:When difficulties arise in enumerating a particular sampling unit included in the random sample,the investigators usually substitute a convenient member of the population. This obviously leads to some bias since the characteristics possessed by the substituted unit will usually be different from those possessed by the unit originally included in the sample.
  • Faulty demarcation of sampling units: Bias due to defective demarcation of sampling units is particularly significant in area surveys such as agricultural experiments in the field of crop cutting surveys etc. In such surveys, while dealing with border line cases, it depends more or less on the discretion of the investigator whether to include them in the sample or not.
  • Error due to bias in the estimation method: Sampling method consists in estimating the parameters of the population by appropriate statistics computed from the sample. Improper choice of the estimation techniques might introduce the error.
  • Variability of the population: Sampling error also depends on the variability or heterogeneity of the population to be sampled.

 

References :

http://www.pondiuni.edu.in/sites/default/files/Research%20Methodology.pdf

 

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