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Research Approach

This blogpost by the experts of would explain about research approaches. While working on a research project, it is very important to decide which research approach would be best for your research. In order to support the process of methodology description, it is essential to follow the research paradigm with appropriate research approach. There are mainly two kinds of research approaches deductive and inductive. Understanding to these approaches is essential to increase the efficiency of the research study. Both the approaches are completely different from each other (shown in Figure). Deductive research approach is associated with the positivism paradigm, whereas inductive research approach is associated with interpretivism. Understanding of both approaches is essential to support the choice of appropriate research approach.

Deductive research approach allows the research to establish a hypothesis by using theory. Variety of data and information is collected by the researcher to confirm or reject the hypothesis to resolve issue (Gill and Johnson 2010). In the given figure, various steps of using deductive approach are development of theory, hypothesis, observation through data and information and confirmation. On the other hand, inductive approach is totally reverse form deductive approach. Observation, pattern, tentative hypothesis and theory (see figure) are important steps of the inductive approach.

Inductive research is a flexible approach because there is no requirement of pre-determined theory to collect data and information. The researcher uses observe data and facts to reach at tentative hypothesis and define a theory as per the research problem. This helps the research to give inductive arguments (Mertens 2008).

Figure: Deductive Vs. Inductive Approach (Trochim 2011)

The deductive research approach is based on the general idea to reach at the specific situation and it is linked with the positivism paradigm, whereas, inductive approach works over a specific idea to generalize the situation as per the research topic, which is linked with the interpretivism paradigm (Crowther and Lancaster 2009). Saunders et al (2007) has asserted that by using both approaches it is very easy to estimate a logical and correct result but it is necessary for the research to combined correct piece of these approaches.

Inductive approach is highly associated with the interpretivism philosophy. Inductive approach allows the researcher to provide subjective reasoning with the help of various real life examples (Ridenour, Benz and Newman 2008). Deductive approach is linked with the positivism philosophy, which include hypothesis to prove assumptions. In this kind of approach it is necessary for the researcher to be general, but this research issue is specific and related to the development of human resources in the organization (Ritchie and Lewis 2003).

We hope that this post would have been useful for you to understand about the research approach. If you need have further or need help with research methodology or dissertation help, please do send us an email to


  1. i found this post soooo helpful.Thanks
    Eric from Finland

  1. great post , thx

  1. It is vey helpful. Could you guys please list and detail the referencies as well? It would be great.

  1. It is vey helpful. Could you guys please list and detail the referencies as well? It would be great.

  1. Great Resource! I have a month to finalize and submit my MBA research...thanks!

    Sam - Kenya

  1. Very helpful thanks

  1. Hello,
    A very good explaination! Can you help me? I have invented a item that evaluates veins on peoples legs. To make a long story short, no one had invented what I have developed. Which method should I use, deductive or inductive?

    Vickie Thomas

  1. it's v easy words explaination ..thanx

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