ASSUMPTIONS, LIMITATIONS, AND DELIMITATIONS IN RESEARCH

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ASSUMPTIONS, LIMITATIONS, AND DELIMITATIONS IN RESEARCH All research carries a set of assumptions, limitations, and delimitations. Few studies are perfect and, as we have discussed previously in this course, studies must be feasible. Feasibility, discussed in earlier weeks, is essential whether a study can be conducted within the time and resource constraints of the researcher(s). These factors provide the reader with an insight into the premises and beliefs, undergirding the research, potential weaknesses of the research, and the decisions you made in limiting the scope of the research. All of these factors may affect the validity, generalizability (quantitative), or transferability (qualitative) of your study’s findings. Researchers should also always attempt to explain and mitigate all assumptions, limitations, and delimitations.
Assumptions: Assumptions are factors we accept as true given the parameters of the study, the population, design, and data collection and analysis methods. Common assumptions include:
Research participants will answer with uncoerced integrity and truthfulness
The inclusion/exclusion criteria defining the sample assured that the sample is representative of the population.
Participants are sincere about your research and are not participating for another motive.
Participants are responding with their true perceptions or views and not aligning with a perceived socially or politically desirable response.
Limitations: Limitations are potential weaknesses of your study that are out of your control. They are conditions or circumstances that restrict your methods and conclusions. Limitations are inherent with some qualitative designs and most quantitative statistical models. Common limitations include:
The number of participants or subjects is sufficient to provide statistical significance (quantitative) or saturation (qualitative).
Perceptions or recollections of participants may be compromised due to cognitive impairment or stage of development.
Unforeseen or unknown conditions or factors in the study environment may skew the data.
Known issues of representativeness of the sample.
The distinctive values or culture of a study population may limit the generalizability (quantitative) or transferability (qualitative) of study findings.
Delimitations: Delimitations are conscious choices made by the researcher. They identify the scope of the project and set the boundaries of your study. Delimitations are often related to your framework and research questions. Some potential delimitations are:
The scope and methods chosen for the study may hinder generalizability or transferability.
The timeframe may have precluded using other potentially more robust designs or methods such as longitudinal designs.
Financial restrictions may have precluded using a larger sample.
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References
Creswell, J. W., & Gutterman, T. C. (2019). Educational research: Planning, conducting, and evaluating quantitative and qualitative research (6th ed.). Pearson.
Eisner, E. W. (2017). The enlightened eye: Qualitative inquiry and the enhancement of educational practice. Teachers College Press.
Frey, B. (2018). The SAGE encyclopedia of educational research, measurement, and evaluation (Vols. 1-4). SAGE. doi:10.4135/9781506326139
Mathison, S. (2005). Encyclopedia of evaluation (Vol. 1). SAGE. doi:10.4135/9781412950558
Wargo, W. G. (2015) Identifying assumptions and limitations for your dissertation. Academic Information Center.
Consider the research focus you originally proposed in EDR-8200 and have been developing throughout this course to consider project feasibility in light of what you have learned in this course about research methodologies.
In your final assignment, you will continue to improve your problem statement based on your professor’s feedback, depict components of the nature of your study, and develop the strategies you will use to select and ethically treat your study participants. All of the work you have completed will culminate in this Signature Assignment for the course.
The work you complete here will serve as a foundation for future courses and, ultimately, your research prospectus, dissertation, or capstone project. Complete the assignment within the context of your evolving study.
This written assignment is to be submitted as one document with the following seven headings:
Problem Statement (3 points)
Purpose Statement (2 points)
Research Questions and Hypotheses (2 points)
Methodology and Design (4 points)
Population and Sample (1 point)
Reliability and Validity (quantitative) or Trustworthiness (qualitative) (1 point)
Assumptions, Limitations, and Delimitations (2 points)
When considering the population and sample, please be sure to include details about feasibility.
For this assignment, keep in mind that you are improving your problem, purpose, and rationale for your methodology, design, and research methods according to the previous feedback received each week from your professor. Provide a complete rationale for how and why the methodology and design you chose were the best choices for your study and how they align with your problem and purpose sentence. Support the data collection procedure and measurement strategies you chose.
Ensure your selection and description of variables (quantitative) or constructs (qualitative) you will gather. Discuss how the variables (quantitative) or constructs (qualitative) will be measured and how they will be evaluated to ensure validity/reliability (quantitative) or trustworthiness (qualitative) as well as how they contribute to the internal alignment of the overall research design.
Length: 4-5 pages, excluding title and reference pages.
References: Include a minimum of 5 scholarly resources

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