Euxodus’s theory that the Earth is the center of the universe was held for more than a thousand years. It wasn’t until Copernicus’s heliocentric theory was introduced that the former theory was considered outdated. In science, you can never prove something to be true. You can only disprove an existing argument with your own. This process of questioning and contesting the current scientific knowledge does not come fast and easy. It takes several reliable studies to create a credible assertion. One way to determine the validity of research findings is when an entire research design is replicated several times, and the results are the same. It is, then, essential that scientific reports and investigations adhere to a clear and replicable research methodology.
Research methodology refers to the process of identifying, assessing, and evaluating data sets to determine the validity and reliability of the findings of a study or investigation. The term is also used to describe the documentation of the actions performed in the conduct of the investigation. It is a logbook that allows the researchers to trace how a result came to be. Scientists and academics refer to the methods of the experiment for an explanation of the errors and the possible mechanism of action for a result. As budding researchers or field veterans, you are expected to take to heart the importance of a well-presented methodology in all investigations you will undertake. Browse through the following templates and samples for a helpful guide on how to properly prepare your research methodology.
A flow chart outlines how you would proceed with your investigation. Unlike the scientific method convention you learn in school, the methodology does not follow a linear path. Instead, it is an illustration of diverging and converging lanes. One way to imagine its application is in hypothesis generation and testing. It is common to arrive at a result that refutes or is entirely different from your initial educated guess. This means that you have to make another hypothesis and conduct a more specific test for it. Get this flow chart template to guide you. It is already structured in the way an investigation proceeds. You can modify the content or follow the determined steps.
A standard research proposal includes a review of related literature, an overview and significance, the study’s methodology, financial breakdown, and a schedule of activities. Instead of allocating separate chapters for each part of the proposal, you can make your document more reader-friendly by combining the methodology and schedule of activities. It gives the reader a better picture of how the study will proceed. With this template, you can specify deadlines per method and indicate what you expect you would have done on those dates.
If you had done your research on what research approach and techniques you will employ in your thesis, you could also try a more detailed approach in preparing your methodology. You can still indicate the expected dates of completion of each step. In the space provided, you can elaborate on each phase. You can even include a list of equipment or facilities that you will utilize in performing your study. There is also a little bonus that your superior or thesis adviser will find that you have planned your study well, and your research or thesis proposal may be approved. If this sounds like the best way you can complete your study, you can even get yourself a copy of this template so you can already start working.
For other fields in research, the methodology is more than a list of steps. Its elements—research method’s philosophy, approach, strategy, design, data collection, and analysis, are emphasized in the Honeycomb Model. The diagram illustrates these methodology elements as hexagons around the research topic. In each hexagon, you can elaborate on how you came about the procedures in conducting the investigation, from the philosophy of your approach to how you would handle the data you obtained following the steps you determined. The model is useful in market research. If you think this system will benefit your investigation, you can download and modify this template design.
In research paper presentations, you will be required to show how the investigation was conducted. Your findings will be evaluated using the methodology you adapted. Whether you are doing your thesis or business research study, each step should be aligned with the research’s objectives. One of the problems presenters face is condensing so much information into a few slides, given just a few minutes to explain it. Because each step contributes to the result of the research, how do you address the issue? One of the safe approaches is a bullet format of keywords with accompanying icons or photos of each procedure, as shown in this downloadable template. You can’t go wrong with what’s tried and tested.
In conducting an investigation, researchers should expect surprises along the road. There would be times that you can come across essential findings that would require you to go back a few steps to validate through testing. Or you might become engrossed over an outcome that it becomes a rabbit hole for you, and you’ve lost sight of the research paper’s objectives. This is possible because the events in the investigation can’t always be predicted to a certain probability. If you feel like you are the type of person who might wander off from her goals for a while, you should use a project flow chart to keep yourself in check. Flow charts, like this free template, are handy productivity tools that provide a framework for your study so that you will be guided the whole time.
When you’re dealing with qualitative research, documentation through photos or videos is vital for the reliability of your study. This is especially true for studies involving field and laboratory experiments. The audience of your research was not there when you performed your investigation. To assure them that your report of the findings is truthful and trustworthy, you can display pictures as proof. Instead of bullet points, another way to present this kind of research methodology is via a timeline. You can place photos beside a short description of how you carried out the experiment. Feel free to use this template, so you don’t have to start from scratch.
This free sample adequately characterizes what goes inside the hexagon spaces of the Honeycomb Model for research methodology. The idea is that these concepts that contribute to how you prepared the methods for your study. Writing down these elements guides you on how to perform your data collection and your analysis techniques. The rationale for your procedures influences how the results were interpreted. The model also informs your audience how you collected your data and if that method fits with what the research is all about. You can get your copy for free to start incorporating the model into your research paper.
The Research Onion Model is a systematic way of choosing and implementing the right research methodology fit for your inquiry. It helps you understand and explain why you chose a particular approach. As you proceed from the outer to the inner layer, you arrive at a more specific strategy that abides by the context of the previous layer. After you defined the nature of your study, you can move to the succeeding layer, and so on, until you’ve reached the identification of the research techniques you will use. The system ensures that the research design and the conduct of the investigation are in line with the objectives of the study. This diagram is your handy guide when you want to use the model.
After you have finished your investigation, you are ready to present your findings to a board or an assembly. How will you effectively communicate with these people the steps that led you to your result? Especially when your study is mainly quantitative, how do you talk about statistical data and numbers without making your presentation seem dragging? You can be creative for this part. You can take photos or put relevant icons of the general methods and place them inside a slide. This example is taken from a study on how thermography can help in maximizing the energy used in a building with the least amount of waste. Instead of the usual bulleted content, the slide features photos that illustrate the methods performed. You can take inspiration from this style of presentation of methodology.