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Business Research Methods

Business Research Methods

Business Research Methods

The main purpose of research work is to analysis and understands the issues of business scientifically and systematically. According to Redman and Mory (1923) defined research is a systematized effort to gain new knowledge” The research proposal is based on qualitative and quantities methods.

Business research serves a number of purposes. Entrepreneurs use research to make decisions about whether or not to enter a particular business or to refine a business idea. Established businesses employ research to determine whether they can succeed in a new geographic region, assess competitors or select a marketing approach for a product. Businesses can choose between a variety of research methods to achieve these ends.

Types of Business Research Methods

  • Qualitative Research
  •  Quantitative Research
  • Applied Research
  • Basic Research
  • Surveys
  • Developmental Research
  • Observations
  • Case studies

Business Research Methods Essay

A clear and sufficient research question is useful to helping researchers to create their research proposal and planning process (Saunders et al., 2009). Research question as like as the core concept of a dissertation that researchers collect the data and design research method base on their research questions and draw conclusion for answer the questions. Research question should be developed by research idea and topic. Find out from the proposal statement and research objects, this information illustrate “How UK Business schools to enhancing Chinese students by investigate students’ expectations and perceptions?” is the question this particular research trying to answer. The research question is clear and specific enough to answer directly because it is point straight at the information necessary to answer the subject which associates with specific research question. Krathwohl (1988) refers to a research question should involves the relationship between two or more variables. In this case, UK Business schools’ service delivery and Chinese post-graduate students’ experience are two variables. That is to say, when schools offer different service, the students might have dissimilar experiences and perceptions about institutions. Another aspect of a sufficient research question must tight with research concept and data (Punch, 2006). In other words, a research question needs to be expression specificity that easy to see what data will be involved for answer the question. In this proposal, the author clear indicate that expectations and perceptions of UK Chinese post-graduate students are the major data will be collected and analysis. Base on evaluate by two different definitions about research question, it can be spoken that the research question of this proposal is appropriate and sufficiently.

Research Method

Planning method is a critical step to a study because it will show the readers how researchers answer the research question. The method section should provide work plan and explain any activity will involved in the project for data collection. According to the case will use form of inductive qualitative research, the method to collect data suppose be certain characteristics, more elaborate, and non numeral. Also, because the process of qualitative research has little impact on the consequence, it is more important to make clear data collection and analysis method. In the case, the design method for gathering information is a series of semi-structured group interview. The strength of using semi-structured group interview in this case is interviewees have few limitations to express their opinions and also can share the own experience to others through the inducted questions emphasis on students’ experience. This method is benefiting the researcher because he or she can be gathering the data from interviewees’ discussion and sharing which is more real and easy than individual interview or participant observation. For example, the cultural issue result in an interviewee may not feel free to sharing his or her experience honestly and individually. Furthermore, the semi-structured interview not only can guide interviewees into discussion but also might get unexpected information from free discussion. The method also mentions about the criteria of participants which is good for readers know about object of study. Moreover, the proposal also refers to the method for sampling procedure that is helpful to record the data and further study used and the method for data analysis. However, in the proposal, it does not show the duration of each interview, why participants chosen, and how sampling selected that that information are very important to qualitative research. Overall, the methods proposed appropriate for the research question by the method design is generally clear and specific but only need more minor explain on sampling and participations.

Qualitative Approach

Usually, the qualitative research is aimed to identify and understand particular human phenomenon (Piantanida and Garman, 1999). According to the final aim of study is tried to deal with a social phenomenon, qualitative method is proper to answer the research questions more efficiently and precisely than quantitative method. The research question suggested the final conclusion of the study is identifying the possibility way to enhance Chinese post-graduate students that refer to why and how consequence were achieved instead of explore what was achieved. Also, through the study, the author expects to display some unintended effects in order to develop the current policy. As the result, qualitative method has the advantage to answer the question efficiently because it allows vary responses to adapt to new issues from the process of research itself. The primary purpose of the research to this study is get knowledge from participations for further study but not prove hypothesizes. Through use of interview particular students, the researcher can get the information from interviewees’ discussion and also can observe their behavior to map student expectations against perceptions then base on the result to identify the method of increase Chinese post-graduate students. Sum up above analysis, use qualitative method is suitable for answer the research question.

Quantitative Approach

Just like pervious mentioned, the research question contains with two variables that the researcher might be able to use quantitative approach base on these two variables to do the research. However, the presupposition to do the quantitative research is must have hypothesized since quantitative is a research method that designed to collect and analysis numerical data and statistics. For example, current institutions’ facilities and students’ lower desire of choice have correlation. Base on this hypothesis, the researcher can make relevant questions for survey candidates, such as how much degree they like about computer software their institutions provide? The advantage of using quantitative research into this study is the research can be aimed at particular aspects to do observation. Then, the conclusion will base on the research result to discuss how to improve this particular sector to enhance more Chinese students. For instance, the research could focus on professors’ teaching quality. So far, seems like only add hypothesizes into study then it can use quantitative approach. However, there are two limitations to do quantitative approach in this study based on current research question that the research question does not mention about any particular service sector which the study will focus on. If the research scope does not narrow down, the quantitative method still cannot be used because institutions’ service scope is too broad to list all of them. The other limitation is quantitative research only ensure one people’s behavior have relationship with others variables but cannot display which is deepest reason. In other words, the research consequence will too general by using quantitative method.

Additional Comment

More clear classification for each sector is required to this proposal. A proposal is a type of report that should contain with some subtitles for each section. However, the current proposal only has four subtitles for all sections result in the proposal is hard to read and search particular section. Therefore, make more clear classification and in ordering is the primary sector the proposal has to change. Second, even it is a small sample, I will make a real timescale for showing the procedure of study. The timescale may not provide with actual time but it can show the duration of each step. Third, provide a simple questionnaire to interviewees before discussion might result in an efficient discussion because the interviewer can ask some particular question base on the result of questionnaire. Forth, interview groups could divide by one particular factor such as Programme or region. People from different regions might have different perceptions. Therefore, if the interview groups can gather people together with similar perception and the discussion will be more smoothly and successfully. According to previous evaluation, the quantitative approach not having more advantage than qualitative approach to the research but combine the two methods might be the better choice. Therefore, if the proposal can be changed, the one thing I would like to do is modify the research method as a mixed-method. Since the qualitative approach has been referring to ethnographic case study which emphasis on describe and display the cultural meaning of behaviors (Punch, 2006), it is good for realize what expectations and perceptions the object of study have. Then use quantitative approach to ensure outcome from the qualitative. By using mixed-methods, it can minimize the error from transcribe and perception especially the researcher has different mother language and culture with object of study.

Ethical Consideration

The essential object for considerate ethical issues in a research is to make sure researcher’s behaviours are appropriate to object of study and relevant (Saunders et al., 2009). For instance, people involved in the research are not likely to satisfy with public their information or particular result so that draw up a norm for the research is significant to represent researchers’ respect to participants. The study refer to qualitative method should attentive to ethical issues than quantitative method because most of participants have to adjust their time or attitude to tally with the researchers’ arrangement. In this case, since the form of sampling is group interview, interviewees have to arrange their time particularly to attend the interview but also they have to discuss with other participants. When the interview should be rearranged or the discussion is out of control, how to deal with these issues are crucial to the research. Second, as the interview will proceeding as a second language to participations, the estrangement and misunderstanding from language should be considerate. Although the language sensitive is one of criteria for recruit interviewees, it cannot ignore that the different cultural and perception might lead variety possible result. More possible ethical issues like interviewees may not have enough information or experience about the research, interviewees may not reveal their opinion honestly, and the miss transcribe from vocal messages to a written document might happened during the study process. Although the researcher cannot predict everything, he or she can display his or her awareness of ethical norm to interviewees. Moreover, for retard the effect of ethical issues, the procedure agreement can be addressed at the very beginning, such as time, location, recorded, and language. The last but not the least, the ethical paramount principle is defending interviewees’ private information.


As noted before, one of methods to testing the result from a research is make another research in different research method. In this case, because the research method has been set as qualitative approach, the testing method will be quantitative approach. The test outcome will be the dependent variable that the measured feedback relies on the specific conditions of the test or independent variable. For example, the researcher can make a testing survey about affected level of school service delivery to Chinese business post-graduate students. The questionnaire should list some factors which is based on the consequence from previous qualitative interview may impact participants’ experience. After retrieve all questionnaires, the researcher can determine which factors are relative important to result gaps between students’ expectations and experience by analysis the sampling. Another method for testing is practical applies some possible factors into recent policy then make another investigation under new service to see if the gap between students’ expectations and experience has any change. The negative aspects for this testing are the method is concern with long term plan and should cooperate with the institution. On the other hand, the positive for piratical testing is the result is more reliable than questionnaire testing. Therefore, if the institution as the organizer or co-organizer of the study it is the better way to test what is the relative important factors.


According to previous review and evaluation, this particular proposal can gain mark 68 from the writer. The purposes of making the research proposal are organizing researchers’ study idea and persuading the target audiences (Saunders et al., 2009). Therefore, a successful research proposal should be considered that the present is clear and sufficiently. Basically, the proposal has well framework of research for carry out the real research action. The proposal shows demonstration of careful and through preparation. From title, background, research objectives, method, resources, and reference, the researcher shows he or she has well knowledge about the research and also provides sufficient information for audiences to know about the research. The proposal is containing with what and how the research is going to do that useful and efficient for remind the researcher during the research process. In this aspect, the researcher shows evidence of his or her sufficient knowledge by chooses appropriate research methods and design. Because the proposal will be stand-alone with main research paper, completely explain the whole research process is necessary for audiences. The proposal refers to why actions doing and why the decisions making that give audiences understand the purpose of every action and worth of the research. As the result, even the audiences are not experts, it is possible and without difficult to image what the complete research will be like. Although there are some flaws, does not have clear classification and timescale, the writer think this proposal is worth to get almost distinction mark since it refer to all major points and have good initial plan.


RBUS2900 Business Research Methods

Introduction to qualitative & quantitative research methods in organizational contexts. Exploratory, quasi-experimental, survey, evaluation & action research methods. Sampling theory. Research process & report writing. Ethics in business research.

Research can inform managerial decision-making and aid in the conceptualization of problems and the pursuit of business opportunities. Knowledge of research methods is of critical importance in today’s business environment, especially given the explosion of qualitative and quantitative data. This course provides an overview of conceptual and statistical issues in research design, which is a fundamental prerequisite successful application of research methods to business problems.

Before attempting this course, students are advised that it is important to complete the appropriate prerequisite course(s) listed on the front of this course profile. No responsibility will be accepted by the School of Business, the Faculty of Business, Economics and Law or the University of Queensland for poor student performance occurring in courses where the appropriate prerequisite(s) has/have not been completed, for any reason whatsoever.  It is the student’s responsibility to attend classes and consult designated notice boards and websites for correct and up-to-date information regarding the course, including examination times. Relying on fellow students to pass on information may result in incorrect information for which the University will not be held responsible.

The course is organized into two streams of concurrent teaching, with the lectures reviewing research design and statistical theory and tutorials providing data analysis skills training. The tutorials are NOT a review of the lecture content and, as such, students should attend both the lecture and a tutorial session in order to complete the course successfully.   The key to successful completion of this course is to study and work on the assignments consistently, allowing on average 10 hours per week including class time. Any problems you have with the course should be brought to the attention of the teaching staff as soon as possible. Any issues they cannot resolve should be addressed with the lecturer and/or associate lecturer. Teaching staff are available to answer your questions during consultation hours or through the Blackboard discussion board. However, it is best to bring as many questions as possible to the weekly lecture and tutorial.

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