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Quantitative research is most common encountered as part of formal or conclusive research, but is also sometimes used when conducting exploratory research. Quantitative research techniques are part of primary research.

Quantitative research differs from qualitative research in the following ways:

  • The data is usually gathered using more structured research instruments
  • The results provide less detail on behavior, attitudes and motivation
  • The results are based on larger sample sizes that are representative of the population,
  • The research can usually be replicated or repeated, given its high reliability; and
  • The analysis of the results is more objective.

The most common quantitative research techniques include:

  • Observation technique
  • Experimentation
  • Survey technique
  • Telephone
  • Self administered: mail or online
  • In-person interview