Identify Research Questions

Research questions narrow the focus of your assessment or evaluation, and restate the purpose of the assessment as specific questions to be answered. Research questions are generated for both quantitative and qualitative research, but differ slightly in their focus.

Quantitative research questions might describe students’ reaction to a classroom innovation, e.g., “How long do students spend on homework after implementation of a flipped classroom?,”  compare groups of students on a learning outcome, e.g., “How do students enrolled in online and in-person classes differ with regard to time spent reading the textbook?,” or explore a relationship between two variables, e.g., “How does an increased choice of electives relate to students' satisfaction with their major?”

Qualitative research questions are open-ended, more general questions that are designed to explore the participants’ perspective, e.g. “How do students who travel abroad describe their experience?”