What are the advantages and disadvantages of an empirical study?

By Priya Chetty on December 8, 2019
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An empirical study is that which has statistical research in the form of the primary. This primary data is usually collected in the form of survey questionnaires or interviews. Focus group discussions, observation methods, and financial statement analysis are some other ways to collect primary data.

  • Since an empirical study contributes to existing knowledge, it adds high value to the research paper.
  • The methodology is flexible. You can change the sample size, sampling type, data collection methods, and analysis methods as necessary.
  • Fewer rules are to be followed as they are flexible to incorporate. Empirical papers can be presented in many ways. For example, you can eliminate the literature review. You can skip testing the hypothesis and base the analysis on frequency tables and cross-tabulations only.
  • It saves a lot of time.

However, there are certain disadvantages too.

  • Empirical studies are lengthy. Depending upon the number of variables and data analysis methods used, primary data analysis cannot be fit in less than 3000 words.
  • Results can be unpredictable. This problem can be averted if suitable measures are taken beforehand.
  • The presentation of data can be tricky. For instance, do you need to present graphs, or tables, or both? Do you need to present the formula for the test used? Do you need to show a sample size calculation? This is because there is no universal format for the presentation of empirical data.


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