Steps In Formative Research

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1.0 What is research?
Research extends human knowledge by helping us see and understand our world. It can do this in any number of ways. Research can support, disprove or modify what we know and think we know. Research can verify or refine previous research studies. But generally, research is used to gather information for business, professional or personal decision making. (Maddock, J. E., & Reger-Nash, B., 2008).
2.0 What is formative research?
Formative research is one of the most important element of facilitating the design of programs and services. It can help refine messages to be more effective for change and generally leads to more effective social and behavior change communication and activities by ensuring that communications and
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 Developing and planning formative research.
Step 1: Define the research problems and purpose:
Research problems and purposes are which motivates the most critical cases, behaviors in communities and households, perception about the practices and the possible ways to facilitate new or improve current practices. (Powell, E.T & Renner, M., 2003).
Step 2: Create a draft of conceptual framework:
Conceptual framework is to keep the formative research focused on the research objectives. A conceptual framework is a set of related ideas behind the research design. It may be simple list of concepts and their possible associations or a more elaborate schematic diagram of key influences, presumed relationships and possible outcomes of the research problem. Most qualitative researchers start with a set of thoughtfully defined concepts and tentative associations as they design the research and begin to work with study participants. As the study progresses, concepts and their relationships become clearer, articulated in the participant’s voices. (Powell, E.T & Renner, M. 2003).
Step 3: Gather, review and summarize available relevant qualitative and quantitative research
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Most field pretests are conducted on the target population, using the procedure being considered for the main survey. The consensus among most researchers is that experienced interviewers should be used in the pretesting process as they are more likely to notice errors and identify problems. Furthermore, survey questionnaire pretests may have two forms. Participating (declared) pretests and undeclared pretests. Participating (declared) pretests entail that the respondents are informed that this is a pretest. In this case, the idea is that instead of asking the respondents to simply fill in a questionnaire, they are also asked to involve in this activity. Being asked to explain their reactions to the question formats, wordings or orders. The respondents may be also asked to rephrase a question in their own words. The goal of pretesting method is to elicit the respondents’ “immediate” thoughts and reactions to a survey question or problem so that it will be easy for the researcher to establish whether the questionnaire is understood. (Gittrlsohn, J., Steckler, A., Johnson, C. C., Pratt,C., Grieser, M., Pickrel, J & Staten, L .K ., 2006).

On the other hand, when conducting an undeclared pretest, the respondents are not informed that they participate in a pretest. In this case, pretesting is conducted in a manner similar to that of the actual survey. The post – interview of the respondents can be carried out in connection

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