Research is all around us. Barely a week goes by when we don’t read or hear about studies that researchers are undertaking. We learn about medical and scientific breakthroughs. We read about worldwide as well as local solutions to contemporary concerns and issues, and we are informed of the results of opinion polls and market research. For example, we know from research that some kinds of ‘thinking’ activities delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. We also know, as a result of scientific developments and medical research, that confirmation of paternity is much easier today than it was a few decades ago. Sometimes research is carried out when a person or organization is searching for a new approach. Sometimes the researcher is sceptical of the available knowledge; there may be conflicting evidence or no information available. Researchers who carry out all these types of work are undertaking an important role in contemporary life. The point to note is the way they go about making their discoveries; it is not haphazard and the discoveries are not brought about simply through flashes of inspiration (Gray, 2004). Researchers use highly structured processes to produce new knowledge (Carter, Kelly and Brailsford, 2012).
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- Introducing Research
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