Quantitative research is the process of collecting data that is of numerical values, however qualitative methods involves the collection of data that is not numerical, the qualitative research methods depict that once the information is collected there is need to formulate a scale of measure that will aid us in converting the data into numerical value in order to achieve ease in statistical manipulation for ease explanation of the results.
Teenage pregnancy can be defined as the occurrence of pregnancy among young women who have not attained the age of 20 years, Lina medina is the youngest teen mother who bore a child at the age of five years in 1939. However the developing countries are more faced with the problem of teenage pregnancy compared to developed countries, some of the causes that can be linked to high occurrences of teenage pregnancy include poverty, low education levels and cultural factors.
Teenage pregnancy results to high risks to the teen and also to the child, it also leads to early parent hood and that means that the child will not have the opportunity to access education, the area of research that should be focused on in this area include the rate of teenage pregnancy in both developing and developed countries, the causes of teenage pregnancy and the possible solutions to the causes of teenage pregnancy, after such a research is undertaken it would aid in policy making and the prevention of teenage pregnancy.
The collection of the data on the above mention areas of interest will both involve qualitative and quantitative data collection, the number and the occurrence of teenage pregnancy is quantitative, the type of country whether developed or developing is qualitative and the methods of collection of these data will involve a snow ball type of sampling and also information from hospitals and this information will aid in sampling the data.
The research process will first involve data collection that will aid in sampling of the data; these data will be obtained from hospitals especially maternity hospitals where the data for mother who are under age can be obtained. The first priority before conducting any research is to inform the authorities about the intention to conduct this research; this will involve summoning the appropriate authorities to obtain permission to conduct the research.
When the data is collected we will then sample the data and this first will mean clustering the data into two categories where we will differentiate the age differences and therefore obtain the cluster that has the ages below 20 years to obtain the teenage mothers. Questionnaires may not be helpful in obtaining the data needed because as earlier observed the teenager mothers may not be literate especially when dealing with those from developing countries. Interviews such as a face to face interview may not also be appropriate because of the high cost associated with locating respondents and interviewing them, but a telephone interview may be better in that there will be no need to travel to the respondent.
The research process will require that we formulate a questionnaire that will aid in the research process, the questionnaire should be formulated in such a way that it does not offend or upset the respondent, the questionnaire should not also be very long and it should be clear and easy for the respondent to understand. These questionnaires may be mailed to the respondents or even read out to the respondents and the appropriate answers fixed, however there is need to pretest the questionnaire before the final research is undertaken.
Finances should be well budgeted and planned for because most researches fail due to lack of funds, however it may be very expensive to undertake such a research and therefore there is need to obtain a sponsor who will help fund the research. And finally when we obtain permission from authorities, formulate a questionnaire, get the finance and have our sample then we can go ahead and undertake our research.
The technique to use in this field of study will be both qualitative and quantitative, the data collected will require that we get the quantitative value of the respondents, their age, the number of children they have and the age of their children all this data will be qualitative, further when we formulate a questionnaire the data collected to signify whether the respondent is from a developed or a developing country will be qualitative, other qualitative data that will be collected will include questions that require responds such as yes or no, others will be open ended questions while others will require we formulate a scale such as good, very good, bad and very bad.
By analytical techniques is the method of statistical manipulation of data that will aid in interpreting the data, analyzing the mean value of teenage pregnancy, the percentage increase or decrease in the level of occurrences, the highest affected areas, among others.
When data is collected there is need to interpret the results in a statistical manner, this will involve statistical calculations that help us standardize the data in such a way that the research results are well explained and findings are well interpreted by the interested persons who may be interested in the results of the study.
Some of the analysis that may be of interest in this study will be the mean value or the percentage per a 1000 have or had teenage pregnancy, the difference in the level of occurrence of teenage pregnancy between the developed and the developing countries, the factors that mostly influence the occurrence of teenage pregnancy such as lack of education, the lack to offer sex education to teenagers and the cultural background. All these factors must be included in the field of study and these will be of interest to establish the major cause of teenage pregnancy.
In preparation of this research we have to first get familiar with topography if it is a field work type of research, by this we mean that the researcher should be familiar with the geographical location of the sites to conduct the research. Also in the case where the research will need to be conducted on illiterate people there is need to find interpreters, and also mobilization of funds to support the study from sponsors.
When we have familiarized with the location of study and also mobilized the funds we can go ahead and conduct the study, if we choose to set up a questionnaire then we will have to obtain the mailing list, if it’s an interview we will also have to obtain a question guide and even maybe an interpreter.
When all this is done the research can be undertaken and this will involve the collection of data, if a questionnaire is not completed by a respondent then the data has to be discarded, also the questionnaire should not require the respondent to give his name, they should be absolutely unanimous. The questionnaires should include all the areas that are of interest in the study and through the formulation of the complete questionnaire we will have to pretest it and improve on the areas that are not clear and therefore the research can now be undertaken.
Sources of information and data
To acquire the data and information on this study we will have to contact the maternity hospitals from these areas, undertake a field study that will involve identifying the respondents, acquiring a mailing list which will aid in posting the questionnaires to the respondents, therefore our information will be obtained directly from the responds.
We will need to also consult the already published journals so that we can get familiar with the subject of study, the study will involve consulting the journals and published work of others, finding out the areas and the weaknesses of their study, this will aid in conducting a good research and avoid replication of already undertaken research.
Critique of other research in this field:
Many studies have been undertaken in these field, many of the researches however have concentrated only the developed countries and failed to undertake the study in developing countries, according to a research done in Canada regarding teenage pregnancy the level of teenage pregnancy was estimated with reference to Canada only, there has been less concern on the developing countries, this study however did not give the recommendations for teenage pregnancy and how it could be minimized.
According to a research done by Singh and Jacqueline Darroch in 1999, the research was only done on ten developed countries and this is biased because they should have also concentrated their study on developing countries, however this research only analyzed the data to explain the level of teenage pregnancies but failed to analyze any hypothesis about the causes and effects of teenage pregnancy, the research did not also provide any recommendation regarding the field of study.
When conducting this research which is qualitative in nature we will have to first consider the scale of measure for various responses, we will therefore need to formulate a questionnaire in the collection of the data, there will still nee to be a qualitative ,measure therefore the research will be both qualitative and quantitative, the field study will involve establishing the causes of teenage pregnancy and the major cause of teenage pregnancy, it will also establish the remedies to the causes of teenage pregnancy.
David Silverman (2004) Qualitative Research: Theory, Method and Practice, Sage Publications, US
Guttmacher (2007) teenage pregnancy, retrieved on 23rd April, available at http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/journals/3201400.html
Canada study on teenage pregnancy (2007) retrieved on 23rd April, available at http://www.statcan.ca/english/kits/preg/preg3.htm
Wikipedia the free encyclopedia (2007) Qualitative research, retrieved on 22nd April, available at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qualitative_research
Wikipedia the free encyclopedia (2007) teenage pregnancy, retrieved on 22nd April, available at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ teenage pregnancy
Wikipedia the free encyclopedia (2007) Quantitative research, retrieved on 22nd April, available at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantitative_research