Chapter Four: Design and causality

Chapter 2 oriented you to the theories relevant to your topic area; the macro, meso, or micro levels of analysis; and the assumptions or paradigms of research. This chapter will use these elements to help you conceptualize and design your research project. You will make specific choices about the purpose of your research, quantitative or qualitative methods, and establishing causality. You’ll also learn how and why researchers use both qualitative and quantitative methods in the same study.

Chapter Outline

  • 4.1 Types of research
  • 4.2 Causality
  • 4.3 Unit of analysis and unit of observation
  • 4.4 Mixed methods

Content Advisory

This chapter discusses or mentions the following topics: child neglect and abuse, sexual harassment, the criminal justice system, homelessness, sexual and domestic violence, depression, and substance abuse.


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Foundations of Social Work Research Copyright © 2020 by Rebecca L. Mauldin is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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