Explanatory Research: Overview, Advantages, and Disadvantages 

Causal research, or causal-comparative research, examines causes-and-effect correlations between two or more variables in causal research. It is used as a method for establishing causal links between variables. As a result, causes-and-effect analysis is conducted to identify which variables may be responsible for specific behaviors. An examination of the causal relationship will be required if a link exists. Good business decisions and effective marketing strategies rely heavily on answering the “why” question, and this is where explanatory research shines. Choosing an exploratory research design is a good first step if you aren’t sure what questions you want to answer. 

The second kind of research is descriptive, and it’s used to paint a picture of the people whose personalities you’re trying to decipher. Using the insights gained from our descriptive data, we explore potential factors that account for observed features, behaviors, and outcomes. Many other factors may have influenced the outcome, i.e., Y, so we cannot rely solely on statistics. Does it involve several factors? Could all these different factors in combination explain why they did well or poorly? That’s what we’re trying to get at when exploring these questions.

Types of Research Method

We’re attempting to explain the reason or effect of anything by employing explanatory kinds of research. A highly formal method for conducting explanation research is similar to that used for descriptive research. You could do surveys or talk to people and conduct in-depth interviews. In explanatory research, two research methods or designs are usually used to investigate the cause-and-effect connection between variables: 

The use of experiments to demonstrate causation between variables is still regarded and used as one of the most critical research strategies. In most experimental studies, there are control and experimental groups, and volunteers are assigned randomly to one or the other.

A quasi-experimental research design is another option. The goal of this kind of research is to find some connection between two or more variables and their effects. However, in these designs, you cannot control all of the contextual factors, so, for instance, you will not necessarily be doing random or creating your groups. It might be better to take existing groups and see where we attempt to control all variables except the one we intend to test.

Why is explanatory research necessary?

Explanatory research enables the researcher to analyze a certain subject thoroughly. In this way, academics have more chances to study new concepts and learn more things.

Advantages of Explanatory Research
  • The causal research focuses on understanding the reasons behind events and how new policies or practices may alter established norms.
  • If necessary, causal investigations often have the benefit of replication.
  • In this study, the subjects were selected systematically, so their internal validity is higher.
Disadvantages of Exploratory Research
  • Coincidences between occurrences could be seen as having causal connections.
  • Drawing the right inferences from the results of the causal study can be challenging. It is a result of the influence of several elements and variables on the social environment. 
  • Despite the ability to establish a correlation between two variables successfully in some situations, it may still be challenging to distinguish the cause from the effect.

Interested in sending your own surveys?

Explore our solutions that help researchers collect accurate insights, boost ROI, and retain respondents using pre-built templates that don’t require coding.

Kultar Singh – Chief Executive Officer, Sambodhi

Kultar Singh
Experience SurveyPoint for Free
No Credit card required
Try our 14 day free trial and get access to our latest features
blog popup form
Experience SurveyPoint for Free
No Credit card required
Try our 14 day free trial and get access to our latest features
blog popup form