3.2 Research Design Trochim (2006) holds that “the research design refers to all the overall strategy that researcher chooses to integrate the different components of the study in a coherent and logical way, thereby, ensuring you will effectively address the research problem; it constitutes the blueprint for the collection, measurement, and analysis of data. Note that your research problem determines the type of design you should use, not the other way round! ” There are about three research designs; qualitative research design the one that generates words as data for analysis (Creswell,1998; Patton, 2009), quantitative research design is the one that generates numbers as data for analysis (Patton and Cochran, 2002), and mixed-method design comprises both qualitative and quantitative research designs. The study intended to assess factors affecting students’ academic performance at Ilala district. The researcher find out the experience in-depth the causative factors of
21 students’ poor perfo rmance from participants themselves (students) as to what extent are they comfortable with teaching/learning environment at school. Thus, qualitative approac h was deemed necessary as (Omari, 2010) postulates that, “qualitative approach expects to conduct and work with more descriptive data which seek deep and vivid descriptions of the context and events. ” A qualitative approach was adopted purposely to allow the flexibility in the study. Qualitative research design allowed researcher to change according to the conditions of the respondents and ask open ended questions during interviews (Kombo et al ; 2006). Some respondents mixed questions during the interview and focused group discussion, the researchers twisted the questions so as to get the required information basing on the objective of the study in assessing how English Language command/capacity, effect of teaching/learning materials and the status of gui dance/counselling affected students’ academic performance, and the ways to improve it. Qualitative design develops in-depth knowledge. Laws, Harper and Marcus (2003) pointed out that if the researcher needs to develop in-depth knowledge about a certain phenomenon, the use of qualitative method is recommended especially interviews method and focused group discussions. The researcher managed to receive views and experiences of the respondents based on the study objectives. For instance, respondents provided their experiences on how English Language capacity/command affected academic performance.
22 Also, qualitative design allowed researcher to make description of data. In qualitative research design, the researcher is allowed to put explanation on the data collection from the field (Patton et al., 2000). The researcher used qualitative design because the research design allowed her to make description on how English Language capacity/command, Teaching/Learning materials and the status of Guidance/Counseling af fected students’ academic performance. Also, the researcher explained recommended strategies in the study according to the response of the
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