Education research is to explain, predict, and/or control educational phenomena.
An education research plan involves:
- Selection and definition of a problem - a problem, hypothesis or question.
- Execution of research procedures - how data are collected and from whom.
- Analysis of data - may involve statistics and testing of the research hypothesis or coding of qualitative measures.
- Drawing or stating conclusions.
- Suggesting needed additional research
Here are some common themes in education research and policy discourse:
Quantitative and/or qualitative research. Quantitative studies collect data and analyze it using numerical procedures, typically a statistical analysis. Qualitative studies collect and analyze narrative data, such as case studies, discourse analysis, and critical theory. In some cases, researchers will draw upon both methods to provide more detailed findings.
Basic and/or Applied Research. Basic research is primarily concerned with the development of theory and knowledge to provide a foundation for applied research. Applied research is generally concerned with the application of theory to the solution of problems. There are three types of applied research.
- Evaluation Research. Evaluation research is the systematic process of gathering data and using the analysis information to make decisions of educational relevance.
- Research and Development (R & D) has the major function of developing effective products for use in the school.
- Action Research - Often involving researchers within the location of study, action research is to solve practical problems through the application of research.