How to draft a research question

The steps in drafting a research question

The research question is an important aspect that becomes the foundation of the research process. If you are creating a research paper, one research question should be sufficient; However, if you are creating a research project several research questions may be required. The research questions can be arrived by following the five steps.

Step I : Broad Topic

You may choose a broad topic related to any of the aspects of hotel or tourism industry.

For example wines

Step II: Preliminary Reading

At this stage you have to read about the broad topic to gain deeper understanding of the topic.

For example: You can read about the wines of different countries, the history, manufacturing process, special methods, GI rules and regulations, quality standards, brands, wine concepts such as new world wines & old world wines, food & wine pairing and so forth.

Step III: Narrow down to specific aspects

In the step II we have identified specific aspects of the topic. Now we have to decide on which aspect of the topic is researchable. Ensure that the specific aspects that you are deciding are researchable, feasible, relevant.

For example: Quality standards of wine

Step IV: Identify research problem

The research problem can be any aspect of the specific topic which has not been explored yet. This shall be the focus of the study as well.

For example: "A detailed study comparing the quality standard of the old world wine and the new world wine"

Step V : Write down the research question

In case of a descriptive study, the question shall be framed with ‘What’.

For example: What are the differences between the quality standards of new world wines and old world wines?

A good research question should be:

  • Focused – A specific aspect of the topic should be identified
  • Researchable – The solution the research question could be achieved either by quantitative method or by secondary data available
  • Feasible – The question should be researchable within the time frame as well as the resources available
  • Specific – All terms used in the question should have clear meaning
  • Complex – The research question should not be one which could be answered with an Yes or No question
  • Relevant – The problem defined should be relevant to the filed of study or society.

Thus the research question can be arrived at for BHM project in five steps. Wishing you an enjoyable researching!

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