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Ch 3: Research Methods & the Study of Gerontology

About This Chapter

View video lessons to learn about the various features of effective research and how they relate to the field of gerontology. These video lessons are short and engaging and make learning easy!

Research Methods & the Study of Gerontology - Chapter Summary and Learning Objectives

Research is a carefully crafted study of a certain issue or concern that uses the scientific method to find a conclusion. In this chapter, instructors will help you understand the various types of research and how that research might be accomplished. In addition, you can learn how the study of adult development and aging fits into the research models and what researchers might be hoping to find. By the end of this chapter, you should understand the following topics:

  • Differences between the various types of research
  • Tools that researchers use to carry out their work
  • What part measurement plays in the research process
  • What types of research is being done related to gerontology

Video Objectives
What is Research? - Definition, Purpose & Typical Researchers Discuss who usually conducts research and their purposes.
How to Produce High-Quality Research Explore the various features of top-notch research.
Nonscientific and Scientific Research: Definitions and Differences Explain the differences between research that is scientific or nonscientific.
Psychological Research Tools: Observation, Measurement & Experimentation Explore the basic tools used in psychological research.
Non-Experimental and Experimental Research: Differences, Advantages & Disadvantages Compare and contrast experimental and non-experimental research.
Research Methodologies: Quantitative, Qualitative & Mixed Method Explain the differences between quantitative, qualitative and mixed method studies.
Basic Research and Applied Research: Definitions and Differences Compare basic and applied research.
Purposes of Research: Exploratory, Descriptive & Explanatory Explain why social research is typically conducted.
The Importance of Measurement in the Research Process Discuss measurement's importance in the research process.
The Difference Between Qualitative & Quantitative Measurement Compare qualitative and quantitative measurement.
Measurement Approaches in Adult Development & Aging Research: Definition, Approaches & Examples Explore the various approaches used in research to measure adult development behaviors.
The Building Blocks of Adult Development & Aging Research: Age, Cohort & Time of Measurement Discuss how the three building blocks are used in all research.
An Overview of Qualitative Research Explain the characteristics of qualitative research.
What is Qualitative Research? - Definition, Sources & Examples Discuss the various sources that might be used for qualitative research.
Correlational Research: Definition, Purpose & Examples Explore the purposes and examples of correlational research.
Longitudinal Designs: Definition & Examples Explain longitudinal designs and offer examples.
Cross-Sectional Designs: Definition & Examples Discuss cross-sectional designs and give examples.
Cross-sectional, Longitudinal & Sequential Designs: Advantages & Disadvantages Compare the positives and negatives of cross-sectional, longitudinal and sequential designs.

18 Lessons in Chapter 3: Research Methods & the Study of Gerontology
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
What is Research? - Definition, Purpose & Typical Researchers

1. What is Research? - Definition, Purpose & Typical Researchers

Research involves using the scientific method to take a careful, detailed study of a specific problem or issue. Study the definition and purpose of research, and learn more about common researchers and famous professionals who engage in this process.

How to Produce High-Quality Research

2. How to Produce High-Quality Research

To be useful, research must be high-quality, conducted following fundamental principles that contain specific aspects. Learn about these aspects, including determinism, empiricism, replicability, falsifiability, and parsimony. Understand how to produce high-quality research by bringing these aspects together.

Nonscientific and Scientific Research: Definitions and Differences

3. Nonscientific and Scientific Research: Definitions and Differences

Nonscientific and scientific research vary in their definitions and methods. Discover these differences through an explanation of how nonscientific research is conducted through tradition, personal experience, intuition, logic, and authority while scientific research relies on the scientific method.

Psychological Research Tools: Observation, Measurement & Experimentation

4. Psychological Research Tools: Observation, Measurement & Experimentation

There are various psychological research tools used to investigate human behavior. Learn about observation and its two types; measurements that assess cognitive, emotional, social and behavioral or motor elements; and experimentation, with examples of famous psychological experiments.

Non-Experimental and Experimental Research: Differences, Advantages & Disadvantages

5. Non-Experimental and Experimental Research: Differences, Advantages & Disadvantages

In non-experimental research, a predictor variable cannot be manipulated by the scientist, meaning conclusions must be reached through observation and interpretation alone. Learn the differences between non-experimental and experimental research and explore the advantages and disadvantages of each type of scientific endeavor.

Research Methodologies: Quantitative, Qualitative & Mixed Method

6. Research Methodologies: Quantitative, Qualitative & Mixed Method

Scientists use a variety of research methods. Explore three types of research methods: quantitative, qualitative, and mixed method, including the strengths and weaknesses of each type.

Basic Research and Applied Research: Definitions and Differences

7. Basic Research and Applied Research: Definitions and Differences

Applied research is driven by a specific question to direct application, while basic research is fueled by curiosity and knowledge expansion. Discover the different questions each may answer and learn to recognize their uses.

Purposes of Research: Exploratory, Descriptive & Explanatory

8. Purposes of Research: Exploratory, Descriptive & Explanatory

Research is purposeful, often intending to explore hypothetical ideas, describe by giving clarity, or to explain cause and effects. Discover the distinction and overlap between Exploratory, Descriptive, and Explanatory research.

The Importance of Measurement in the Research Process

9. The Importance of Measurement in the Research Process

Measurement is a necessary part of the research process in psychology. Examine the importance of measurement by first learning to define it then explore the three common types of measures found in psychological research.

The Difference Between Qualitative & Quantitative Measurement

10. The Difference Between Qualitative & Quantitative Measurement

There are two types of psychological measurement: quantitative and qualitative measurement. This lesson compares and contrasts these different measurements, discusses how psychologists use them in practice, including using mixed methods.

Measurement Approaches in Adult Development & Aging Research: Definition, Approaches & Examples

11. Measurement Approaches in Adult Development & Aging Research: Definition, Approaches & Examples

There are three measurements research scientists use when studying adult development and aging, including systematic observation, self-reporting, and representative sampling. Learn the definitions of the three types of research and the nuances of the approaches through the examples provided.

The Building Blocks of Adult Development & Aging Research: Age, Cohort & Time of Measurement

12. The Building Blocks of Adult Development & Aging Research: Age, Cohort & Time of Measurement

The building blocks of adult development and aging research is a method of examining how individuals change over time. Learn about the three factors of adult development: age, cohort, and time of measurement.

An Overview of Qualitative Research

13. An Overview of Qualitative Research

Qualitative research can be defined as research that takes an in-depth look at complex phenomena using non-numerical data. Explore an overview of the strength the strengths and weaknesses of qualitative research and discover how it compares to quantitative research.

What is Qualitative Research? - Definition, Sources & Examples

14. What is Qualitative Research? - Definition, Sources & Examples

Qualitative research takes a deeper look at non-numerical data. Explore the definition and examples of qualitative research, as well as the sources such as artifacts, observations, and interviews.

Correlational Research: Definition, Purpose & Examples

15. Correlational Research: Definition, Purpose & Examples

Correlational research is defined as the study of correlations, or relationships, between two variables. Learn about positive and negative correlations and understand the purpose of this type of research through examples.

Longitudinal Designs: Definition & Examples

16. Longitudinal Designs: Definition & Examples

Longitudinal designs are research studies involving population samples and development effects over time. Explore the definition and examples of longitudinal design and learn about the benefits and issues of it.

Cross-Sectional Designs: Definition & Examples

17. Cross-Sectional Designs: Definition & Examples

Cross-sectional designs are sampled groups selected from a quasi-experiment and examined to determine differences between sections of the continuum. Learn about the definition, advantages, and real-world examples of cross-sectional designs.

Cross-sectional, Longitudinal & Sequential Designs: Advantages & Disadvantages

18. Cross-sectional, Longitudinal & Sequential Designs: Advantages & Disadvantages

Research studies can be conducted by scientists using various designs, including cross-sectional, longitudinal, and sequential designs. Explore each of these designs and their advantages and disadvantages, and understand the importance of ecological validity.

Chapter Practice Exam
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