Method section answers two questions:
- How was data collected or generated?
- How was it analyzed?
It shows the readers how the author got their results.
Why does the author need to explain how they got their results?
- The readers need to know this because how the information was obtained affects the results. Knowing how the data was obtained helps the readers validate the author and how reliable the sources are, it helps the readers draw conclusions from the results.
- Most of the time there is plenty of options to answer a research question. The methods section explains why you chose the method you did.
- The reader wants to know that the data was collected in a way that is considered reliable in the field. For example a questionaire would have to have a good range in answers like a) bad b) good c) excellent.
- The research methods must be appropriate to the objectives of the study. If the person does one case study for efficiency of drivers, that does no good to the objective.
- The methodology should describe the anticipated problems and explain the steps the taken to prevent the problems, and the problems that occurred then the steps that made them less of a problem.
- Sometimes other researchers apply other researchers methods to their research but they make it their own but that’s only if it’s a new method or an innovated use of the method
- Irrelevant detail
- Unnecessary explanations remember this not a how to for beginners. The people reading it will be scholars in the field that know how to write one already.
- Problem blindness-most people run into problems while collecting data or while generating them. It could be important to write down the problems because they could help. Just don’t ignore the problems.
- Introduction:introduction of objectives, methodology, problems, how the author overcame the problems and how the objectives will be achieved.
- Literature Review:review of work related to methodology, pervious work that relates to the research problem and previous work that relates to results.
- Method:explanation of how the data was collected, generated, how data was analyzed, methodological problems and there solutions or effects.
- Results and discussion:presentation of results and the interpretation of the results.
- Conculsions:has the research problem been achieved? how? has the objectives been met? how? what was learnt from the results?how can what was learned be used? what are the short comings of the research? etc.
Some examples of different types of research
- Analysis:classes of data are collected and generated from case studies.
- Case study:information on one or more individuals, businesses or communities. The group is observed, then recorded then analyzed for stages or for patterns that show up.
- Comparsion:two or more exisiting situations are compared to one another.
- Correlation-prediction:statistically important correlation coefficients between and among a number of factors are sought and interpreted.
- Evaluation:determines whether a program or project worked.
- Design-deomstration:new systems are evaluated
- Survey-questionnaire:different things of people are reported and interpreted.
- Status:a representitive is selected and studied
- Theory construction:attempt to explain how principles work
- Trend analysis:prediction or forcasting future events
An example of the method.
Writing your own method section.
- Remember the purpose of the method section
- Keep notes of what you did, how and why. some people make research diaries. make sure you have some way to record your stuff so that way you have it and know what you should include or not include.
- Remember who the audience is so that way you don’t include unnecessary information.
- Avoid “I” and “we”. Only use we if you worked one or more researchers. Use a passive voice.
- Use the correct the verb tenses and be consistent.
“Method research and design.” Language Center. Asian Institute of Technology. <http://www.languages.ait.ac.th/el21meth.htm>