The selection of research approach helps the researcher to determine the subsequent components of the study. Therefore, the first phase in a research process is to identify the type of research approach that will be used to explore an area of interest. There are three approaches to research which have been identified as quantitative approach, qualitative approach and mixed method research approach
Quantitative Research Approach
The quantitative research approach focuses on the analysis of objective data that is in numerical format. This format allows the researcher to gain access to specific piece of information and use it to draw inferences. These inferences are then generalized on the population of the study to indicate the implications of the findings. One of the notable features of quantitative research approach is that it emphasizes empirical aspects of the data, which makes it significantly unbiased in nature
Quantitative research approach is based on positivism research philosophy which implies that the core purpose of an investigation in the domain of business and management is to analyze an area from an objective stance, reflecting similarity with the research paradigm of scientific enquiry. The research process aims at analyzing the plausibility of research assumptions through numerical data which is empirically tested.
Qualitative Research Approach
The qualitative research approach on the other hand provides an alternate means of carrying out research. It focuses on the subjective component or social experience of the individuals, considering it important to analyze the deeper meaning that people attach with social phenomenon rather than limiting the research to objective information. Due to the different perspective towards investigation, qualitative studies reflect research philosophy of interpretivism, which considers the implementation of scientific approach to investigation of human behavior offering limiting insight. As a result, proponents of qualitative research focus on detailed analysis of subjective opinion of individuals.