Business Research Method Chapter 4

Research Process
A sequence of clearly defined steps within a research study.
Management-Research Question Hierarchy
Process of sequential question formulation that leads a manager or researcher from management dilemma to measurement questions.
Management Dilemma
The problem or opportunity that requires a decision; a symptom of a problem or an early indication of an opportunity.
Management Question
Restatement of the manager’s dilemma in question form.
Research Question(s)
The hypothesis that best states the objective of the research; the answer to this question would provide the manager with the desired information necessary to make a decision with respect to the management dilemma.
Investigative Questions
Questions the researcher must answer to satisfactorily answer the research question; what the manager feels he or she needs to know to arrive at a conclusion about the management dilemma.
Measurement Questions
What participants in research are asked or what specifically is observed in a research study.
Decision Rule
The criterion for judging the attractiveness of two or more alternatives when using a decision variable.
Decision Variable
A quantifiable characteristic, attribute, or outcome on which a choice decision will be made.
Research Design
The blueprint for fulfilling research objectives and answering questions.
Target Population
Means those people, events, or records that contain the desired information and can answer the measurement questions.
Census
Requires that the researcher examine or count all elements in the target population.
Sample
Examines a portion of the target population, and the portion must be carefully selected to represent that population.
Data
The facts presented to the researcher from the study’s environment.
Secondary Data
Have had at least one level of interpretation inserted between the event and its recording.
Primary Data
Sought for their proximity to the truth and control over error.
Data Analysis
Involves reducing accumulated data to a manageable size, developing summaries, looking for patterns, and applying statistical techniques.
Pilot Test
Conducted to detect weaknesses in design and instrumentation and to provide proxy data for selection of a probability sample.