In a single page, present the statement of the purpose of the study (i.e., by completing the
statement, “The purpose of the study is to…”) and then follow up with the relevant research
questions. Remember, the Purpose of the Study is to gain information to address the problem
introduced in Assignment 1 (Statement of the Problem) and reviewed in Assignment 2
(Literature Review). “The purpose statement should provide a specific and accurate synopsis of
the overall purpose of the study” (Locke, Spirduso, & Silverman, 1987, p. 5). Note that the
purpose of the study is being use generically for either a dissertation study or a strategic research
project proposed study.
Key points to keep in mind when preparing a purpose statement:
Create a sentence that begins with “The purpose of this study is to . . .”
Clearly identify and define the central concepts or ideas of the study.
Next, develop your research questions. Refer to Creswell Chapter 4 and Ch. 4 PPT for an in-
depth overview of developing research questions. A research question poses a relationship
between two or more variables, but phrases the relationship as a question and should adhere to
the following guidelines: (a) formation of question or questions are based on theory, previous
research (i.e., the literature review), and experience; (b) stated in the form of a question; and (c)
are focused and clear (i.e., specific and feasible).
Examples taken from Creswell (2012):
Descriptive Question (Quantitative)- Use the following script: How frequently do (participants)
(variable) at (research site)? Application: How frequently do African Americans feel isolated on
Relationship Question (Quantitative)- Script: How does (independent variable) relate to
(dependent variable) for (participants) at (research site)? Application: How do feelings of
isolation relate to (or influence) the ethnic identity of African Americans in the United States?
Comparison Question (Quantitative)- Script: How does (group 1) differ from (group 2) in terms
of (dependent variable) for the (participants) at (research site)? Application: How do African
Americans and Euro Americans compare in their perceptions of ethnic identity?
Central Question (Qualitative)- Script: What is (central phenomenon) for (participants) at
(research site)? Application: What is creativity for five students at Roosevelt High School?
**Please Note: These are simply suggestions for the types of research questions you can have;
Students should NOT submit one of each type of question. The type of question(s) you use
depends entirely on your research problem and purpose statement.
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