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This section is a comprehensive explanation of the actions that the researcher will perform in order to obtain, process and interpret the data in harmony with the aims and hypotheses. It may contain several subsections, and is the primary concern for the technical reviewers. Therefore at this stage, the proposer addresses specialists in the field, in a realistic, explicit and detailed manner. He or she should evidence the connection between the aims and the methods. The idea is to describe the study design, with enough detail, precision and clarity as to allow any researcher, anywhere, to reproduce the study.

The Methods section should include at least (if applicable):

  • Definition of the population of interest (if applicable)
  • Details about the sample:

    • Magnitude

    • Type

    • Procedures of selection:

      • Inclusion criteria

      • Exclusion criteria

    • Control group(s)

      • Important variables regarding actual "controls"

  • Calibration procedures
  • Procedures to obtain the basic data

  • Measurement procedures and instruments

    • Basic materials for the tasks

      • Lot number of materials

      • Name and address of manufacturer (supplier)

  • Interventions

  • Duration

  • Statistical Methods
  • Variables
    • Resultant

    • Predictive

    • Type (quantitative; qualitative)

  • Level of Measurement (nominal, ordinal, interval, ratio)

  • Sample Size / Power (1-ß)

  • Statistical Hypotheses

    • Null Hypothesis

    • Alternate Hypothesis

  • Statistical Test(s) and Significance (a)

    • Appropriate for the Level of Measurement

  • Data collection forms


From the Statement of the Problem to the description of Methods the proposal has been dealing with the scientific plan of the research. Subsequently, the proposal deals with the administrative plan of the research.



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