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Interdisciplinary Studies in Health Science (IDS): Identifying Methods

A guide of library and information resources for the Interprofessional Studies (IDS) major.

Differences Between Quantitative and Qualitative Studies

Comparison of Quantitative and Qualitative Resarch

Identifying Research Methods

Reading Articles & Identifying Methods

When reviewing research that you have found, start by reading the abstract in order to identify the methodologies used in the study.  Research articles should also include a section that describes the methods used in more detail.  

Not all quantitative or qualitative studies will include the same clues present in the examples on this page. Read articles carefully to understand the methodologies used.

Identifying Quantitative Research - Example

This abstract has several indications that this is a quantitative study:

  • the goal of the study was examining relationships between several variables
  • the researchers used statistical methods (logistic regression models)
  • subjects completed questionnaires
  • the study included a large number of subjects

Identifying Qualitative Research - Example

This abstract has several indications that this is a qualitative study:

  • the goal of the study was to explore the subjects' experiences
  • the researchers conducted open-ended interviews
  • the researchers used thematic analysis when reviewing the interviews

Based on Eastern Michigan University Library LibGuide Quantitative and Qualitative Research: Identifying Methods