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Research Questions and Hypotheses Checklist

Research Questions and Hypotheses Checklist

Use the following criteria to evaluate an author�s research questions and/or hypotheses.

Look for indications of the following:

� Is the research question(s) a logical extension of the purpose of the study?
� Does the research question(s) reflect the best question to address the problem?
� Does the research question(s) align with the design of the study?
� Does the research question(s) align with the method identified for collecting data?

Quantitative Research Design

This paper provides a critique of one research study. In this critique, the hypotheses
and research questions are evaluated with the use of Research Questions and Hypotheses

Checklist as a guide. The type of quantitative research design that was used is also identified
and an explanation is provided of how the design was implemented by researchers.
Moreover, the alignment among the theory, research questions and hypothesis, problem and
design is analyzed.
Research questions and hypotheses
In their study, Long and Ullman (2016) examined an extensive diverse sample of
African-American victims of sexual assault (N = 495) for the purpose of determining the
correlations of assault characteristics, post-assault psychosocial factors, trauma history, and
demographics with drug use and problem drinking with the use of multivariate regressions.
The research question which Long and Ullman (2016) sought to answer is as follows:
 What is the influence of assault characteristics and traumatic life events on illicit drug
use and problem drinking in African-American female victims of sexual assault?
Their hypothesis is as follows:
 Basing upon previous research which indicates that prior trauma, re-victimization, and
socio-economic status might have an impact on post-assault recovery, the researchers
hypothesized that African-American women who have multiple traumatic life
experiences would have a higher likelihood of using drugs and alcohol in order to
cope with the sexual victimization.
The research question is a logical extension of the study’s main purpose, considering
that the study’s purpose was to explore the way in which different factors like history of
trauma, socioeconomic status, and age are associated with the utilization of illegal substances
following sexual victimization in African-American women (Long & Ullman, 2016). The
design which the researchers used in this study is exploratory in nature. The research question

is actually aligned with the study’s research design. Exploratory research designs are usually
carried out by the researcher regarding a particular research problem when there are very few
previous researches to refer to (Balnaves & Caputi, 2013; Creswell, 2010). This design is
really appropriate since as Long and Ullman (2016) pointed out, there are really few earlier
research studies which have looked into the factors associated with drug use and problem
drinking in African-American victims of sexual assault.
The method which the researchers have used for data collection is questionnaire
survey. The researchers sent to the participants a 45-minute confidential mail survey. Out of
all the questionnaire surveys which were mailed out, a total of 1,084 participants – Black
women numbering 495 – returned properly completed questionnaires, and the response rate
was 90 percent (Long & Ullman, 2016). The data collection method – that is, questionnaire
survey – is actually in alignment with the research question since this method allows the
researcher to gather data from a large number of participants easily and cheaply.
The study is quantitative in nature. The descriptive question seeks to describe
responses to major variables, and the inferential questions actually seek to compare groups.
The researchers have first specified the descriptive research question for every major variable
and then stated the inferential question which compares groups or relates variables. In
addition, the inferential questions follow from a theory: the theory which explains that the
reason as to why women who have been re-victimized abuse alcohol and illicit drugs is that
they do so as a way of helping themselves to cope with previous abuse (Filipas & Ullman,
2012; Hall, 2011).
The theory that was used by the researchers explains the correlation between
dependent variable and independent variable, controlling for the effects of control variable.
The researchers expected demographic variables such as socioeconomic status and age, as

well as traumatic life events and assault characteristics to be associated with dealing with
illegal drugs and alcohol not just within the women’s lifetime, but also within the previous
year. The authors then entered the variables that were significant at the bivariate level into
backward logistic regressions for the purpose of examining the effect of coping methods,
traumatic life events, demographic variables, and assault characteristics (Long & Ullman,
2016). The variables as described in the study are actually positioned consistently from
predictor/independent to outcome/dependent in the inferential question. However, the
researchers have not provided an alternate and/or null hypothesis as a predictive statement.
Type of quantitative research design used
The researchers used an exploratory research design in carrying out the study. The
researchers implemented the design by surveying 495 African American women using a
convenience sample in Chicago and its adjacent urban region. These women were studied
using the exploratory design to find out the relationships of assault characteristics, post-
assault psychosocial factors, trauma history, and demographics with drug use and problem
drinking with the use of multivariate regressions.
Alignment among theory, purpose, problem, hypotheses and research questions, and
The hypothesis is consistent with its respective research question. The research
hypothesis, as Farrugia (2010) pointed out, refers to a testable statement of opinion. In the
study by Long and Ullman (2016), the research hypothesis has been created by the authors
from the research question. The research question has clearly specified the participants, who
are African-American female victims of sexual assault.



Balnaves, M., & Caputi, P. (2013). Introduction to quantitative research methods: An
investigative approach. London, England: SAGE Publications.

Creswell, J. W. (2010). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods
approaches. Albany, NY: Prentice Hall.
Hall, J. M. (2011). Core issues for female child abuse survivors in recovery from substance
misuse. Qualitative Health Research, 10, 612–631.
Filipas, H. H., & Ullman, S. E. (2012). Child sexual abuse, coping responses, self-blame,
posttraumatic stress disorder, and adult sexual revictimization. Journal of
Interpersonal Violence, 21, 652–672.
Long, L., & Ullman, S. E. (2016). Correlates of problem drinking and drug use in Black
assault victims. Violence and Victims, 31(1): 1-15

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