Skip to Main Content

Evidence Based Nursing

This guide provides information on evidence based practice in nursing

Difference between Qualitative vs. Quantitative Research

Qualitative research allows you to discover the why and how of people and activities. The abstract from this dissertation shows  the study: 

  • Asks open-ended questions
  • Examines people's activities
  • Gives a narrative conclusion 
  • Observations and Interviews 
  • Understanding and interpreting social interactions and behaviors 
  • Uses a small group of subjects 
  • Uses words 

Quantitative research is based on things that can be accurately and precisely measured. The abstract shows that this dissertation:

  • Describes with statistics
  • Gives a statistical result 
  • Makes predictions 
  • Objective 
  • Studies a randomly selected group 
  • Tests a theory 
  • Uses numbers
  • Uses a survey 

Identifying Quantitative Research- Example

This abstract has several indications that this is a quantitative study:

  • the goal of the study was examining relationships between several variables
  • the researchers used statistical methods (logistic regression models)
  • subjects completed questionnaires
  • the study included a large number of subjects

Based on Eastern Michigan University Library Libguide Quantitative and Qualitative Research 

Identifying Qualitative Research-Example

This abstract has several indications that this is a qualitative study: 

  • the goal of the study was to explore the subjects' experiences. 
  • the researchers conducted open-ended interviews. 
  • the researchers used thematic analysis when reviewing the interviews. 


Based on Eastern Michigan University Library Libguide Quantitative and Qualitative Research