This paper focuses on the level of happiness in terms of regional disparities and measurement. Happiness has become a critical concern in the contemporary world due to increased psychological and physiological disorders. As such, the paper develops a survey design to collect data on the statutory differences in happiness, its measurement and the factors that affect it. The survey collects data from three segments of the population that include psychologists, counselors and common citizens. The sample will comprise of 150 participants who have been divided into the three segments. The sampling will be conducted by the use of random purposive sampling which is a combination of the two methods reflected in its name.
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Chosen Scenario and Rationale
This paper will focus on the fifth scenario which is labeled as scenario E. The scenario has been chosen because due to the importance of happiness in human welfare. Indeed, Diener, Oishi, and Lucas (2012) noted that happiness is one of the crucial concerns in the contemporary world due to the rising cases of psychological disorders. As such, Oishi (2011) indicated that it has become important to understand the disparities in the level of happiness in terms of geographical locations. In addition to this, it is important to understand the factors affecting the level of happiness in a human being and how to measure it (Zeng & Guo, 2012).
Chosen Approach and Rationale
According to the analysis of the scenario, the chosen research design is a survey. In principle, the kind of research design used in a study is determined by the nature of the research. In turn, the nature of the research I determined by the research questions posed in the proposed research. This implies that it is important to understand the research questions. The chosen scenario is based on three research questions as shown in this list.
- What are the likely factors that affect the level of happiness?
- Why are people from some states in the USA happier than others?
- How can the factors above be measured?
A close look into the research questions shows that the scenario is exploratory. It seeks to explore the disparities in happiness levels within a known jurisdiction. In essence, it targets to bring a new knowledge base in the field of research. This implies that the research must get information from the relevant players within the different states. Although there have been other research studies conducted about the same topic, some aspects like happiness change from time to time. This implies that conducting a study based on the present scenario is important. Otherwise, relying on studies that were conducted in the past might be misleading because some of the factors might have changed.
Sketch of the Research Design
Dependent and Independent Variables
Although this research is a qualitative study since it does not seek to make quantifiable determinations, it is common knowledge that there are independent and dependent variables. The dependent variable, in this case, is happiness. This is based on the fact that the scenario focuses on how it changes from one state to another. As such, this is an indication that happiness varies by political boundaries due to changes in governance and culture. In other words, it is not constant. Also, the second research questions seek to identify the factors that affect happiness. This is a further indication that happiness is not a constant aspect. Instead, it is affected by other factors and hence becomes the independent variable. On the other hand, the geographical boundaries (states) are the dependent variables. The other factors that will also be identified regarding the second research question will also serve as independent variables.
|Type of Variable||Variable|
|Independent||States (boundaries) and other factors that affect happiness.|
To carry a successful survey and get the required data for analysis, it is crucial to identify the relevant population (Johnson, 2014). In this regard, the population of interest in this scenario will include three segmentations. The first segment includes psychologists who deal with issues of life satisfaction and happiness. They will be needed to provide crucial information on the factors that influence happiness in people. They will also shed light on the different parameters used to measure happiness. The second segmentation will include counselors bearing in mind that they are involved in guiding people out of difficulties. This implies they have information on the different detriments of happiness and the causes of happiness. Also, the survey will include common citizens from the 52 states. Each of the states will be represented by two people that include one youth and one aged person. This differentiation is based on the fact that the young and the aged have different sources of happiness.
Since the population of interest is very extensive, a survey cannot collect data from the entire population (Cornwell & Hoagland, 2014). As a result, it is important to conduct sampling to consider a smaller number of people. Understandably, this regulates the cost of research and ensures that the time needed is affordable. When it comes to the sample size, the sample will comprise of 150 respondents. 104 will come from the segment that includes the normal citizenry. Since the survey considers two from each state, the number amounts to 104. The survey will then include 23 counselors and 23 psychologists to make a total of 46 respondents. The segmentation is as follows.
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The sampling will be conducted in line with random purposive sampling. As the name suggests, it is a hybrid of two sampling techniques namely random and purposive sampling. In the first technique, random sampling helps to ensure that the participants are not biased or oriented towards achieving a pre-desired result (Kakinami & Conner, 2010). Purposive sampling, on the other hand, seeks to ensure that the sample includes people with the required information. In that regard, therefore, the sampling method ensures a balance between randomization and objectivity. As such, the combination of the two techniques increases the credibility and reliability of the results obtained.
Types of Questions
The data will be conducted by the use of emailed questionnaires. As such, the questionnaires include several questions that seek responses that are later treated as the data. Various questions will be posted in the process of collecting data.
- What are some of the factors that increase the level of happiness?
- According to statistics, what is the level of happiness in this state?
- What are the factors that reduce the level of happiness?
- Does the level of happiness rely on the internal satisfaction of external aspects?
- What parameters are used when measuring happiness?
Limitations of the Design and Effects
Although this design is essentially appropriate to the scenario presented above, it is evident that it disregards previously conducted research studies. In essence, this might handicap the results or the relevance of the research because previous research findings help to identify the research gaps that should be closed
The chosen scenario can be handled effectively if a survey is used. The survey will collect data from counselors, psychologists, and common citizens. However, due to the constriction of time and money, sampling will be conducted to have 150 participants. The sampling will be conducted by the use of random purposive sampling which promotes a balance between objectivity and impartiality.
Cornwell, B., & Hoagland, E. (2014). Survey Methods for Social Network Research. Johnson/Health Survey Methods Health Survey Methods, 18(7), 275-313.
Diener, E., Oishi, S., & Lucas, R. (2012). Subjective Well-Being: The Science of Happiness and Life Satisfaction. Oxford Handbooks Online, 19(8). Web.
Johnson, T. (2014). Origins and Development of Health Survey Methods. Johnson/Health Survey Methods Health Survey Methods, 13(5), 1-17.
Kakinami, L., & Conner, K. (2010). Sampling Strategies for Addiction Research. Addiction Research Methods, 27-42.
Oishi, S. (2011). Happiness. Oxford Bibliographies Online Datasets, 22(9), 1095-1100.
Zeng, H., & Guo, S. (2012). The Chinese Subject Well-Being and the View of Happiness in China Tradition Culture. Acta Psychologica Sinica, 44(7), 986-994.