Identify and describe five scientific methods of research inquiry and how you would apply them to a research Project.Be sure to provide examples. Develop a hypothesis focused on the professional practices of criminal justice practitioners. An example of a hypothesis would be: You could propose a hypothesis that focuses on whether law enforcement is better equipped to handle terrorism post 9/11 or whether airline safety has improved since the attacks of 9/11, etc.
Then select two methods of inquiries and how you would apply them to your hypothesis to reach a conclusion.http://extmedia.kaplan.edu/crimJust/CJ499_1203C/CJ499_Unit4_Assignment.pdf
Hypothesis on Criminal Justice Practitioners
Retrospective Cohort Study
This method of research inquiry involves the researcher identifying a cohort of individuals who are exposed to a particular factor in the environment. The researcher examines whether exposure to particular factors in the environment leads to the development of a disease or particular characteristics on the cohort of individuals. In a retrospective study, the researcher examines a historical cohort through analysis of existing official records (Taylor, 2010). The aim of the researcher here is to assess the kinds of exposures or outcomes that have affects to the cohort during the initial stages of the study. For example, a researcher may be interested in examining the risk factors that are associated with increased rate of recidivism among juvenile offenders. The researcher may identify a cohort of juvenile offenders and then examine existing official documentation concerning the juvenile offenders. The researcher may also conduct a longitudinal analysis on the select cohort of individuals.
A meta-analysis refers to a study that examines and combines the results obtained from multiple scientific studies. A meta-analysis employs statistical methods to evaluate the results of other similar scientific studies for errors or for their accuracy (Card & In Little, 2016). The basic premise of meta-analyses studies is that the results of multiple scientific studies bear some truth, which can be ascertained through statistical analysis. In meta-analysis, the researcher aims at making references from a wide pool of available studies relating to the problem under investigation (Card & In Little, 2016). For example, a researcher may be interested in examining the efficacy of various forms of treatment methods available for mental health issues among juvenile offenders. In order to do this, the researcher must identify existing literature on the subject and conduct statistical analysis to come up with a conclusion.
Randomized Controlled Trial
A randomized controlled trial is a study in which participants are randomly allocated to either a control group or an experimental group (Taylor, 2010). Those in the experimental group receive treatment and are closely monitored by the researchers for any changes. On the other hand, those in the control group are given placebo treatment or may not receive anything. The random allocation of the research subjects to any of the two groups reduces bias, while allowing the researchers to compare the effects of the treatment on the experimental group Vis a Vis the control group. For example, in an experiment to investigate the effectiveness of a particular therapeutic program on juvenile offenders, the researcher may randomly place the subjects to either the control group or the experimental group. The experimental group undergoes treatment, while the control group does not.
The quasi-experimental method is similar to randomized controlled trials in that in both, the researcher identifies the control group as well as the experimental group (Thyer, 2012). However, the main difference is that there is no random allocation of research subjects to the treatment group or the control group. A quasi-experimental design thereby allows the researcher to take control of the assignment of the subjects based on particular criteria. For instance, in an investigation to examine the impact of cognitive behavioral therapy among mentally ill prisoners, the researcher may allocate a group of subject above the age of 20 to the treatment group and those below this age to the control group.
Case Study Method
The case study method involves detailed investigations concerning particular phenomena, people or community. The researcher gathers data usually through observation and interviews. The researcher may follow the research subjects for a period, until he/she gathers adequate data. On most occasions, case studies involve a limited geographical coverage or limited number of participants. Case studies often apply in the study of real-life phenomenon that is currently ongoing and often involves the detailed analysis of a limited number of factors or conditions. For example, a researcher my conduct a case study to determine the impacts of smoking marijuana on a group of youths. The researcher may follow the groups of youths for a period of time in order to learn of its impacts to their health and social life.
This study hypothesizes that law enforcement is not better equipped to handle terrorism in the post 9/11 period.
A method that can be applied in the examination of this hypothesis is meta-analysis of existing literature. A researcher can examine existing literature concerning the effectiveness of law enforcement in curbing terrorism since 9/11. For instance, the researcher may examine 100 studies that detail the changes that have taken place in law enforcement since 9/11 attacks and its effectiveness in general. A retrospective cohort study can also be used to examine this hypothesis. In a retrospective cohort study, the researcher may begin the research by examining existing official records on the effectiveness of law enforcement since the 9/11 attacks. After the examination of the documents, the researcher may conduct a longitudinal analysis to the current problem by examining how law enforcement tackles challenges related to terrorism.
Card, N. A., & In Little, T. D. (2016). Applied Meta-Analysis for Social Science Research. New York: Guilford Press.
Taylor, C. B. (2010). How to practice evidence-based psychiatry: Basic principles and case studies. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Pub.
Thyer, B. A. (2012). Quasi-experimental research designs. New York: Oxford University Press.
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