One of the complexities for many undergraduate students and for first time researchers is ‘How to blend their socialization with the systematic rigours of scientific inquiry?’ For some, the socialization process would have embedded in them hunches, faith, family authority and even ‘hearsay’ as acceptable modes of establishing the existence of certain phenomena. These are not principles or approaches rooted in academic theorizing or critical thinking. Despite insurmountable scientific evidence that have been gathered by empiricism, the falsification of some perspectives that students hold are difficulty to change as they still want to hold ‘true’ to the previous ways of gaining knowledge. Even though time may be clearly showing those issues are obsolete or even ‘mythological’, students will always adhere to information that they had garnered in their early socialization. The difficulty in objectivism is not the ‘truths’ that it claims to provide and/or how we must relate to these realities, it is ‘how do young researchers abandon their preferred socialization to research findings? Furthermore, the difficulty of humans and even more so upcoming scholars is how to validate their socialization with research findings in the presence of empiricism.
Within the aforementioned background, social researchers must understand that ethic must govern the reporting of their findings, irrespective of the results and their value systems. Ethical principles, in the social or natural research, are not ‘good’ because of their inherent construction, but that they are protectors of the subjects (participants) from the researcher(s) who may think the study’s contribution is paramount to any harm that the interviewees may suffer from conducting the study. Then, there is the issue of confidentiality, which sometimes might be conflicting to the personal situations faced by the researcher. I will be simplistic to suggest that who takes precedence is based on the code of conduct that guides that profession. Hence, undergraduate students should be brought into the general awareness that findings must be reported without any form of alteration. This then give rise to ‘how do we systematically investigate social phenomena?’
The aged old discourse of the correctness of quantitative versus qualitative research will not be explored in this work as such a debate is obsolete and by rehashing this here is a pointless dialogue. Nevertheless, this textbook will forward illustrations of how to analyze quantitative data without including any qualitative interpretation techniques. I believe that the problems faced by students as how to interpret statistical data (ie quantitative data), must be addressed as the complexities are many and can be overcome in a short time with assistance.
My rationale for using ‘hypotheses’ as the premise upon which to build an analysis is embedded in the logicity of how to explore social or natural happenings. I know that hypothesis testing is not the only approach to examining current germane realities, but that it is one way which uses more ‘pure’ science techniques than other approaches.