Design Related Thesis

You might think that would be a very interesting question, but it will have to wait for another study.In narrowing the focus of your research questions, you limit your ability to answer other questions, and again, that’s ok.

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You don’t have to (and can’t) do it all in one project.

Similarly, the focus of the research problem itself (and the associated research questions) is another common source of delimitations.

If the identified problem is our lack of knowledge about teachers’ experiences, and your research questions focus on better understanding these experiences, that means that you are choosing to focus on other problems or questions, even those that may seem closely related.

For instance, you are not asking how effective the new curriculum is in improving student test scores or graduation rates.

As interesting as their experiences might be, you can save these questions for another study.

That is the part of the beauty of research: there will always be more studies to do, more questions to ask.

Here, we will dive a bit deeper into the differences between limitations and delimitations and provide some helpful tips for addressing them in your research project—whether you are working on a quantitative or qualitative study. Defining Boundaries These concepts are easy to get confused because both limitations and delimitations restrict (or limit) the questions you’ll be able to answer with your study, most notably in terms of generalizability.

However, the biggest difference between limitations and delimitations is the degree of control you have over them—that is, how much they are based in conscious, intentional choices you made in designing your study.

Perhaps you’ll narrow your focus even more to elementary school teachers in a particular school district who have been teaching for a particular length of time. These are choices you will need to make, both for practical reasons (i.e., the population you have access to) and for the questions you are trying to answer. It just means that, for the purposes of your project and your research questions, you’re interested in the experience of the teachers, so you’re excluding anyone who does not meet those criteria.

Of course, for this particular example, this does not mean that it wouldn’t be interesting to also know what principals think about the new curriculum. Having delimitations to your population of interest also means that you won’t be able to answer any questions about the experiences of those other populations; this is ok because those populations are .


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