The research process

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How and where does research begin? It usually begins with an interest, idea, a view or theory on a particular topic. It may be a problem that needs to be solved, a question that needs to be answered, an issue that needs to be explored, or a theory that needs to be proved.

An Overview of the research process

The research process can be simplified using the diagram below. The left column uses simple language to explain the research process and the right column uses language more common in the research literature. Both columns explain the research process.

Source Otago Polytechnic 2006

What is the research process?

It is the systematic manner in which a researcher approaches their area of study to produce knowledge which the community will consider to be worthwhile within the field.

There are four principles stages in the research process that we will cover here:

  • Inquiry
  • Collection
  • Organisation
  • Presentation