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Educational setting as used here refers to areas like schools, colleges, universities and primary schools where education is carried out. There are several issues that are related to research and may therefore be addressed by a relevant research (Joan 2002, p. 218). The issues range from those which are related to the learning environment, those concerned with infrastructure, economic factors as well as social issues in the learning institution.
Issues of research may include for instance, how effective education policies are to a given or to all institutions or how ineffective they are, whether new changes in college policies have any significant impact, a study of the behavior of students in relation to a certain administrative issue, a study on which education tools are most effective in terms of content delivery as a measure of their performance, a study of relevance or appropriateness of a certain education system for schools, a study comparing effectiveness of teaching and learning methods in both private and public schools, study of social behavior of students at different levels of education or at private compared to at public schools, an inquiry in to why some students fail exams and others pass even after being exposed to similar treatment at school environment, the role of parents and guardians in contributing to children’s performance…. the list of educational research issues is endless(Biklen 1992, p. 73). Quantitative methods used in an educational setting One of the quantitative methods appropriate is collection of data about the issue of study.
It may be done by collecting primary data about the students directly which may be done by taking a total count of the population under study or just developing a sampling frame where a section of the population is selected, without bias, and studied to obtain information about the whole student population (Mechthild, 1996, 69). Questionnaires may also be administered where students may fill their data and then analyzed using appropriate statistical technique such as SPSS, Excel among others. Secondary data may be used by obtaining information from their records kept by administration. Data obtained this way may be about performance, grand social misconducts, etc (Michael 2005, p. 46). Ethical considerations for research in educational settings
Researchers are faced with the responsibility of researchers in the field of education in conjunction with the funding bodies as well as the host institutions to uphold the general human rights in the processes of conducting research in as far as the field of education is concerned (Elliott & Stern 2007, p. 567). The ethical issue with this respect addresses the privacy rights as well as the freedom to give information. In consideration to the rights of the children, there is a special need for the protection of the children from any possible harm and at the same time ensuring that the children have played an active role as positive participants in the processes of decision making the clear fact is that research in the field of education mostly targets children to whom the research is most often directed.
In the realization of the fact that this is the vulnerable segment of the society, the educational researchers have the responsibility for the protection of the children in the process of conducting their research, and at the same time addressing the issue of the maintenance of the integrity of the intended research and the community at large (Gross & Ruby, 2003, 321). The researcher should pledge to accomplish this objective through the maintenance of the right competency and a progressive evaluation of the research for its adequacy in matters of ethics as well as scientific competency. Research in this field incorporates education as well and it should therefore not be rigorous but capable for the noble contribution to the enhancement of the quality in education in the society (Elliott & Stern 2007, p. 67).