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Empirical Research

Empirical research is simply research conducted on the basis of empirical evidence. It can also be defined as a way of gathering knowledge by means of indirect and direct observation or experience. The values derived from empiricism are useful for some research more than other kinds. Empirical evidence is the record of a person’s direct observations or experiences and can be analyzed qualitatively or quantitatively.

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By quantifying the evidence, a researcher will be able to answer empirical questions, that should be answerable and clearly defined with the evidence collected which is called data. The design of the research can vary from field to field and by the question being investigated. A lot of applied researchers combine quantitative and qualitative forms of analysis for better answering questions that cannot be studied in a laboratory setting, particularly in the field of social sciences and education.

In some other fields, quantitative research might begin with a research question which is then tested by means of experimentation. Generally, the researcher will have a certain theory regarding the topic under investigation. On the basis of this theory, statements or hypotheses may be proposed. On the basis of these hypotheses, predictions based on specific events are derived. These predictions can hence be tested with an experiment. On the basis of the outcomes of the practical experiment, the theory on which the predictions and hypotheses were based will be supported or not, or might need certain modifications and then subjected to further testing.

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