Quantitative & Qualitative Methods Essay Examples & Outline

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Quantitative & Qualitative Methods

The article by Olver & Camilleri et al. states that although the survey results often indicate an increased interest amongst the Canadian psychology graduate students in them pursuing criminal justice psychology, the retention and recruitment of persons as the Correctional service of Canada has become of great concern (Mark Olver, 2011). The study showed that the existed several sites in the Canadian service of Canada that provided different and diverse opportunities for the different clinical psychology training opportunities. The barrier that was most evident to the provision of training according to the article is lack of time for the prospective trainers as well as the sites reporting relatively few of their trainees being retained in the different positions available for psychologists. There is a need for clinical training in the justice system.

Statistics shows that since the year 1997, there has been an increase of around 71% with offenders who are diagnosed as having mental health conditions. Further, the numbers of offenders that are on a prescribed medication have also increased. It has come to the attention of many health care professionals that indeed the health resources that exist in the federal correctional facilities are not sufficient, and therefore, there is a need for the service to ensure that they enhance the recruitment of mental health professionals. This research method was quantitative and used the survey method to collect primary information from the ground.

Johnson, Holsinger & Lowenkamp argue in their article that offender assessment is the cornerstone of effective community supervision. The authors present the progression of and test the predictive validity that exists in the 4th-generation risk assessment instruments that are often designed for U.S probation. The authors use large administrative data in order to try to create an assessment of these instruments as well as conduct a prospective and efficient validation (Christopher LowenKamp, 2013). The data that is gotten from the case vignettes scored by several trained officers are consequently used in order to test whether there exists an interrater agreement with the assessment instrument that is being used. In summary, the analysis of the assessment instrument showed that there existed a predicted re-arrest reliably when the assessment results were based entirely on the administrative data as well as the officer-completed assessments.

Further, the analysis also showed high rates of interrater agreement. However, although the study was comprehensive in terms of its scope and data usage, there existed several limitations. Firstly, the data that used in the research was archival and, therefore, there is a need to ensure that there is recent data that is collected. Further, in the future analysis there is a need to ensure that there exists a dynamic approach in order to lead to the development of instruments that can be said to be extremely sensitive to change. This, therefore, assesses the offender change more pronounced and, therefore, the progress can be said to be more feasible.

Johnson, Holsinger & Lowenkamp in their article use multiple data sources in a bid to construct as well as validate the PCRA. The data sources included federal reports criminal history report and several other important reports. This was a qualitative method of data collection, as it did not involve any quantification. On the other hand, the research by Olver & Camilleri et al. involved a survey of several training opportunities and, therefore, it can be categorized as being quantitative. These are the two major differences that exist between these two articles; one is quantitative, and the other is qualitative. The research by Johnson, Holsinger & Lowenkamp used Multivariate analysis in order to analyze the data that they had, this was important as it led to them to several important conclusions. The Olver & Camilleri et al. research used standard statistical analyses such as mean, standard deviation, variance, and regression analysis in order to interpret the data that they had taken from the field.

In conclusion, there are two major methods of research; either quantitative or qualitative. There is no better method as the two often serve their unique services and it often depends on what the researcher wants to achieve. However, quantitative research is often encouraged because it involves working with recent data that has no bias and therefore, one is more likely to have a logical and reliable conclusion as compared to qualitative methods. The major limitation that comes with qualitative methods is that the data that is being used is often archival. This means that it might be outdated and might not go hand in hand with the current trends in the market and consequently, one might arrive at the wrong conclusion. However, the two have different and special circumstance where they might be used, for example, qualitative analysis is often cost friendly as compared to the quantitative method and consequently, a research group that is working on a tight budget might decide to go for the qualitative method as opposed to the quantitative one primarily because of the tight budget.


Christopher LowenKamp, J. J. (2013). The Federal Post Conviction Risk Assessment (PCRA): A construction and validity study . Psychological services , 87-96.
Mark Olver, J. C. (2011). A Survey of Clinical Psychology Training in Canadian Federal Corrections: Implications for Psychologist Recruitment and Retention. Canadian Psychology , 310-320.