Social Research :The process adopted to know the authoritative facts in the modern sociology, is called social research. There are many methods of this research, which are adopted keeping in view the individual and needs of the subject. It depends up on the individual how he discovers a new thing for a social world and to do this a researcher has to think logically, to revise the different stages while adopting some principles. An intelligent researcher relates theories or ideas with facts in a systematic way and brings into use his imagination and creative abilities and discovers the facts.
What is Research?Man has always been curious to find out new things and facts and this attempt of man is called research. In other words, it is knowledge and a way to collect social facts by the people in an organized way. Sociologists define research as :
1. Good and Halt :
“Research is an organized and systematic effort to check and search for the validity of any hypothesis, fact or theory.”
2. Cuber :
“Research is to add something new to the sum total of human knowledge through technical procedures.”
Why Do We Research?Man is curious by nature and that is why he tries to gain knowledge and adds to his knowledge and abilities. In the beginning, his attempt was unorganized but with the passage of time he organized his attempts and used his research as a source for achievement of the following aims :
1. We use research.to judge social phenomena and to get more and deep knowledge of it.
2. To know the reasons of problems. After collecting data and analyzing it. we can get information about .the reasons of problems and can find solution of problems in the light of research.
3. When we are in doubt about a hypothesis, we do research and in the light of facts found by doing research we can reject or accept a hypothesis.
4. To adjudge the practical validity of a theory, research is done and in the light of the research we can reject or annual that theory because of the new facts.
5. Research is an effective source to know facts. Sometimes we do research to find facts to be used for future foretelling and precautions.
6. Research reveals new facts and previous information is modified and new information is added by promotion of the knowledge.
What is Knowledge?Knowledge is information and according to Boulding, “Research is the greatest source of increase of knowledge. The increase in knowledge is an evolutionary process and when started, it continues. It helps in saving us and for providing facilities.”
“There are three kinds of human knowledge according to Boulding :
i. Folk knowledge
ii. Literary or imaginary knowledge
iii. Scientific knowledge
These can be explained as given below :
Folk knowledge consists of our daily life experiences and it can be judged in an Organized way. Literary or imaginary knowledge is difficult to judge through experiments but even then this knowledge maintains its existence because it. consists of symbolic reality. Through this knowledge, literary knowledge takes birth from an abstract way, however, it is the essence of folk knowledge and explains human qualities and abilities. The third form of knowledge is scientific knowledge that is raising high to its zenith. It gets its energy from folk and literary knowledge just as the folk knowledge is taken from incidents and experiments of daily life and the achievement of theories in an abstract manner is taken from literary or imaginary knowledge. The combination of them creates scientific knowledge. It is created when folk knowledge and imaginary knowledge passing through research and take the form of a reliable knowledge as empirical science.