What is Health Research?

Types of Health Research

What is a research design?

A method is the way to a goal. For a simple goal, one method might be enough. If the goal is complex many methods have to be applied in a logical order and several subgoals must be achieved before it is possible to reach the final goal. A comprehensive plan is necessary. In research this plan is called “research design”.


“The function of a research design is to ensure that the evidence obtained enables us to answer the initial question as unambiguously as possible.” (www.nyu.edu/classes/bkg/methods/005847ch1.pdf, page 9, 06.08.19)


“The conceptual phase is the initial phase of research and involves the intellectual process of developing a research idea into a realistic and appropriate research design. … The research design is the overall plan for conducting a study that will optimize the ability to achieve the study purpose and obtain accurate results.” (www.esourceresearch.org, Design Decision in Research: The Conceptual Phase - Page 4, The Design and Planning Phase - Page 11, 10.08.19)


“The term design describes the overall plan and structure of a peace of research … A design can be regarded as the framework into which particular methods are fitted. … Research methods are the specific techniques employed in the execution of a piece of research.” (Sim J, Wright C (2000) Research in Health Care: Concepts, Designs and Methods. Cheltenham, UK: Nelson Thornes)

A research design a set of methods and subgoals