Posted on: 31st Mar 2020 3410 Views

Inductive Research approach with Example

Inductive research is more open-ended for the researcher who can make their conclusions based on evidence they find while looking at a situation or problem from different angles.

Students often have confusion regarding the application of inductive and deductive research. In this article, our expert team will guide the applicability of inductive research.

Inductive Research

What is an inductive approach in research?

An approach that intends to generate meaning from the information collected. You can utilize inductive reasoning for the identification of patterns and relationships which is very much essential for creating a theory. By utilizing the approach you can anytime change the direction of study during the investigation process.

Why is the Inductive approach important?

The inductive approach, also known as inductive reasoning, begins with observations, and theories are presented as a result of observations near the end of the research process. Inductive research is “looking for patterns in observations and developing explanations – theories – for those patterns through a succession of hypotheses.” Inductive investigations do not require any theories or hypotheses at the start of the research process, and the researcher is free to change the path of the study after it has begun.

When to use the inductive approach?

It is critical to emphasize that using an inductive method does not mean ignoring theories when developing research questions and objectives. The inductive approach aims to generate meaning from the data set collected to identify patterns and relationships to construct a theory.

However, the inductive approach does not preclude the researcher from formulating the research question to be investigated using existing theory. Learning through experience is the foundation of inductive thinking. To draw conclusions, patterns, resemblances, and regularities in experience (premises) are observed (or to generate theory).

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Advantages of inductive research method

The advantage of inductive reasoning is that

  • It enables you to draw a general conclusion based on observation.
  • Another advantage of inductive reasoning is that it enables you to establish probability. It also allows you to be wrong.
  • One of the benefits of the inductive research method is that it allows investigators to analyze the pattern and develop theory.

How to use an inductive research approach?

The three steps included in the approach are:

  • Step 1: Observation: Inductive research starts with a detailed observation of the phenomenon. Then after that, you need to provide generalized findings and systematically present your idea. About inductive reasoning, an investigator provides empirical generalization and tries to find a preliminary relationship between different variables of the study.

The researcher has no idea about the type and nature of the findings until the completion of an investigation. Inductive reasoning is also recognized to be a bottom-up approach. It is a research approach that which investigator utilizes for describing the phenomenon.

  • Step 2: Observation of pattern: It is the step where you need to collect the information and analyze the pattern of response. An approach generally includes the use of qualitative techniques for the collection and analysis of facts.

The researcher mainly uses open-ended and procedure-oriented questionnaires for the collection of information related to the topic. In the context of inductive research, an investigation includes a narrative description and constant comparison

  • Step 3: Development of hypothesis: Based on data collected and analysis performed you need to create a new hypothesis or make changes to the existing theory.

Note :

1. You can also utilize an inductive research approach for performing quantitative research also.

2. It is very much important for you to mention the approach which you are using for performing an investigation at the time of writing a dissertation.

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Inductive Research example

Linda son has borrowed 50 $ from his friend last march and he has not returned the money till April as he promised.

But he assures his friend to pay money till end of May but still he did not pay. Her son has also failed to keep his promise. Now Linda has to face consequences.


  • Observation: an elephant is dependent on water to exit.
  • Observation of pattern: All other animals which have been observed are dependent on water for their survival.
  • Develop a hypothesis: All biological life is completely based on water to exists.


It has been concluded from the above article that the approach is mainly concerned with the development of a hypothesis. Another fact that has been discovered is that inductive research starts with observation.

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