Graziano and Raulin (8th ed)Graziano & Raulin
Research Methods (8th edition)

Phases of Research

Each research project ordinarily moves in an orderly manner through several phases as shown in the following table reproduced from Chapter 2.

  • Idea-generating phase: Identify a topic of interest to study.
  • Problem-definition phase: Refine the vague and general idea that was generated in the previous step.
  • Procedures-design phase: Decide on the specific procedures to be used in the gathering and statistical analysis of the data.
  • Observation phase: Using the procedures devised in the previous step, collect your observations from the participants in your study.
  • Data-analysis phase: Analyze the data collected above using appropriate statistical procedures.
  • Interpretation phase: Compare your results with the results predicted on the basis of your theory. Do your results support the theory?
  • Communication phase: Prepare a written or oral report of the study for publication or other presentation to colleagues. The report should include a detailed description of all of the above steps.

The following descriptions of actual studies identify the phases of each research project. These descriptions do not provide full details. They are intended only to illustrate the flow of the research process from the initial ideas to the final communication phase. The journal citation is provided for each study for those interested in the details. Note that the studies have been carried out at different levels of constraint as discussed in Chapter 2.