There are basically two kinds of research questions: testable and non-testable.
Neither is better than the other, and both have a place in customer satisfaction and employee surveys.
The pure experiment in the form of a randomized controlled longitudinal study, also referred to as a randomized controlled trial (RCT), is in many disciplines regarded as the ‘gold standard’.
Its study design is believed to yield the Non-randomized studies, also referred to as quasi-experimental, observational or correlation studies, are regarded as research designs with lower internal validity.
Examples of this type of research design include panel, cohort and case-control studies.
Surveys and case studies are regarded as research designs with the greatest chance of bias in their outcome and therefore come low down in the hierarchy.
Examples of non-testable research questions are: What do customers feel is fair price for the new product? How do customers feel about the quality of our products?
What are employee's attitudes towards the new management? Respondents' answers to these questions can be summarized in descriptive tables and the results might be extremely valuable to administrators and planners.
As the process continues, the goals become more clearly defined and the research issues are narrowed.The purpose of this research was to complete a mentoring needs assessment of our nursing faculty, with the overall goal of establishing the foundation and validation for a formal mentoring program.We recruited 60% ( = 29) of our full-time faculty to complete the Faculty of Nursing Mentoring Needs Assessment survey/questionnaire.For instance, an RCT has a high internal validity, but may be less suited to generalization, which restricts its practical usability.Non-randomized longitudinal studies, on the other hand, have a lower internal validity, but can nevertheless be very useful for management practice.
The internal validity indicates to what extent the results of the research may be biased and is thus a comment on the degree to which alternative explanations for the outcome found are possible.