Conducting Educational Research
Steps in Conducting a Research Study

Conducting an educational research study is an intensive but intensely rewarding process. The following tutorial provides step-by-step guidance for conducting an educational research study according to the University of Jos guidelines. These guidelines can be slightly modified for other educational research studies. Other social science researchers can also use these guidelines by adapting the general principles of research methods to their own domain of study.

I highly recommend that each researcher starts by reading the Overview of Scientific Research so you are clear on the general principles of educational research. If you have already started your project and need advice about a particular step, you can then click on that step. If you are just starting a research study, click NEXT to review the entire research process before you begin.

If you have any questions, comments, corrections, or errors, please email me at

Overview of Scientific Research
Steps in Conducting Scientific Research
  1. Brainstorm research ideas
  2. Identify key variables and research design
  3. Write Purposes, Research Questions, and Hypotheses based on key variables and research design
  4. Write the Research Design section to describe the selected design
  5. Consider the population that is in line with your purposes
  6. Based on logistical considerations, select the sampling procedure
  7. Write the Population, Sample, and Sampling Technique sections
  8. Search the literature to find other studies about your key variables
  9. Choose an appropriate instrument for each key variable
  10. Write Instruments section to describe the instruments
  11. For experimental and quasi-experimental studies, develop a treatment that should influence the dependent variables
  12. Write the Method of Data Collection section to describe the treatment and how the instruments will be administered
  13. Write the Method of Data Analysis section to describe the appropriate statistics based on the research questions and hypotheses
  14. Write the rest of Chapter 1, Introduction, focusing on the key variables in the purposes
  15. Write Chapter 2, Review of Relevant Literature, focusing on the key variables in the purposes
  16. Collect data, strictly following the procedures described in Chapter 3, Methods
  17. Analyze data according to the procedures described in Method of Data Analysis
  18. Write Chapter 4, Results
  19. Write Chapter 5, Conclusion
  20. Create Supplementary Materials
  21. Implement the lessons learned from the research study in education

For more references, here are general guidelines on writing each portion of a thesis according to the UniJos Faculty of Education guidelines. This page links to PowerPoint presentations that describe each aspect of writing and conducting a research study for a thesis, as well as three step-by-step examples of conducting a research study.


The following resources were used in developing this website.

American Psychological Association. (2001). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (5th ed.). Washington, DC: Author.
Cohen, R. J., & Swerdlik, M. E. (1999). Psychological testing and assessment: An introduction to tests and measurement (4th ed.). Mountain View, CA: Mayfield.
Gall, M. D., Gall, J. P., & Borg, W. R. (2003). Educational Research: An Introduction (7th ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon.
Reeve. (n.d.) How to write a journal article. Unpublished manuscript.
Singleton, R. A. Jr., & Straits, B. C. (2010). Approaches to social research (5th ed.).New York: Oxford University Press.
Trochim, W. M. (2006). The Research Methods Knowledge Base (2nd ed.). Retrieved online from


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