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Research

Methodology
EPH 7112
LECTURE 2: CHARACTERISTICS
AND TYPES OF RESEARCH

Contents
Characteristics of Scientific Research
Types of Research

Basic Research
Applied Research
Academic Research
Industrial Research

Scientific Research

How is it different from non-scientific


research?
Focuses on solving problems and pursues a
step-by-step logical, organized, and
rigorous method to

identify the problems


collect data
analyze and
draw valid conclusions

Scientific Research
Non-scientific research based on
hunches, experience and intuition
Pilot study, exploratory

Characteristics of Scientific
Research
Aim
Rigor
Testability
Replicability
Precision and Confidence
Objectivity
Generalizability
Parsimony

Characteristics of Scientific
Research
Aim
The purpose of scientific research is
clear

eg to increase gain of EDFA


to reduce Optical Beat Interference
to reduce Noise Figure

Characteristics of Scientific
Research

Rigorous
Based on good theoretical base and sound
methodology
Careful and scrupulous

eg all design parameters concerning the


gain in EDFA must be considered; EDF
length and concentration, pump power, input
signal power and wavelength.
eg resolution of OSA, stability of current
source for pump laser

Characteristics of Scientific
Research

Testability
Test theoretical model by simulation or
experiment
Analysis of performance parameter against
design parameter

eg EDFA theoretical model show low gain


with high input signal power.
Experiment to test this relationship while
other design parameters are fixed can be
carried out.
Gain is measured against input signal power

Characteristics of Scientific
Research
Replicability
The same relationship stands
repeatedly under the same design
parameters

Characteristics of Scientific
Research
Precision and Confidence
Precision refers to closeness of the
findings to reality
Confidence refers to the probability
that our estimations are correct

Characteristics of Scientific
Research
Objectivity
Conclusions drawn from the analysis
of data must be objective
Proven from trend in data
Supported by theoretical model

Characteristics of Scientific
Research
Generalizability
Scope of applicability
The wider, the better
Eg. Rate Equation Model applicable
for lasers and fiber amplifiers

Characteristics of Scientific
Research
Parsimony
Simplicity in explaining the
phenomena or problem
Assumptions are critical
Minimize the dependant variable

Types of Research
Basic Research
Applied Research
Academic Research
Industrial Research

Basic Research
Also known as pure or fundamental
research
Objective:

Advancement of knowledge
Understanding of theoretical
relationship between variables

Basic Research
Exploratory in nature
Without any practical end in mind

Basic Research

Examples of questions asked in basic


research:

Which aspects of genomes explain


organismal complexity?
Is it possible to prove or disprove
Goldbach's conjecture? (i.e. that every
even integer greater than 2 can be
written as the sum of two (not
necessarily distinct) primes)

Applied Research
Solve specific, practical questions
Can be exploratory, but descriptive
Involves precise measurement of the
characteristics and describes
relationships between variables of a
studied phenomenon

Applied Research

Can be carried out by


academic or industrial
institutions
Investigation directed to
discovering new
scientific knowledge that
has specific commercial
objectives with respect
to products, processes
or services

Applied Research

Examples of question asked in applied


research:

How can Canada's wheat crops be


protected from grasshoppers?
What is the most efficient and effective
vaccine against influenza?
How can the Great Lakes be protected
against the effects of greenhouse gas?

Academic research
carried out in universities and
research institutes
expanding the extant levels of
knowledge and technology
does not have any limits as it does not
have any bounds in terms of tangible
goals or outputs

Industrial Research
carried out in commercial
organizations
a goal or a set of outputs that apply to
the sector or industry
focuses on application of knowledge

Defining MSc and PhD


UG
One is ready to learn

MSc
One is ready to explore

PhD

One is ready to create

MSc, a process of
Identifying a research area of interest
Learning to carry out a research
project
Identifying problems
Analyzing/ dissecting problems
Designing/developing solutions
Proving/Substantiating solution
Reporting

Outcome of MSc program


Understand the issues of concerns
within the area of specialization
Update with the latest development in
the area of specialization
Master some of the tools (analytical,
programming, simulation) required
within the scope of study
Master some of the test and
measurement skills

Outcome of MSc program


Be able to analyze results
Be able to report results ; oral and
written
Have published papers
Know the primary references for the
area of specialization

Outcome of MSc program

Know the leading researchers/research


groups in the area of study
Know the relevant industries/companies
Identify his/her research strength and
weaknesses (theoretical, experimental;
materials, processes, components/devices,
system)
Conduct research with minimal guidance
Smile..