Explaining & Comparing Both Methods

Descriptive Research

Descriptive research is defined as a research method that describes the characteristics of the population or phenomenon that is being studied. This methodology focuses more on the “what” of the research subject rather than the “why” of the research subject.

In other words, descriptive research primarily focuses on describing the nature of a demographic segment, without focusing on “why” a certain phenomenon occurs. That means, it “describes” the subject of the research, without covering “why” it happens.

Types of Descriptive Research

Naturalistic Observation

Naturalistic observation is, in contrast to analog observation, a research tool in which a subject is observed in its natural habitat without any manipulation by the observer. During naturalistic observation, researchers take great care to avoid interfering with the behavior they are observing by using unobtrusive methods.

Naturalistic observation involves two main differences that set it apart from other forms of data gathering. In the context of a naturalistic observation, the environment is in no way being manipulated by the observer nor was it created by the observer.


The essence of survey research can be explained as “questioning individuals on a topic or topics and then describing their responses”. Survey research is often used to assess thoughts, opinions, and feelings. Surveys can be specific and limited, or they can have more global, widespread goals.

Case Studies

A case study is a research method involving an up-close, in-depth, and detailed examination of a subject of study (the case), as well as its related contextual conditions. Case studies aim to analyze specific issues within the boundaries of a specific environment, situation or organization.

Analytical Research

In Analytical Research, the researcher has to use facts or information already available, and analyze them to make a critical evaluation of the material.

It involves the in-depth study and evaluation of available information in an attempt to explain complex phenomenon.

Analytical Researches primarily concerned with testing hypothesis and specifying and interpreting relationships, by analyzing the facts or information already available.

Types of Analytical Research

Historical Research

It is the study of past records and other information sources, with a view to find the origin and development of a phenomenon and to discover the trends in the past, in order to understand the present and to anticipate the future.

Philosophical Research

It is the research of the fundamental nature of knowledge, reality and existence. It is the research of the theoretical basis of a branch of knowledge or experience.


It is the process of a formal assessment of a research with the intention of instituting or making any change in it if necessary.

Research Synthesis

It is the process through which two or more research studies are assessed with the objective of summarizing the evidence relating to a particular question.