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The Research Question in the Sciences

This guide will help you formulate a quality research question when dealing with topics in the sciences.

The Descriptive Question

As the name suggests, the descriptive question describes conditions that are happening or characteristics that exist.  Answering a descriptive question relies a great deal on the observational skills of the researcher. The researcher may even have to employ unusual observational tools or techniques to gather their information. Through these skills, it is hoped to discover something that has never been described before.

Examples include:

  • What are the products created from the digestion of lactose?
  • What environment factors cause pillbugs to employ their survival techniques?
  • What is the mating territorial range of a Pacific gray whale?
  • What is the density of galena when present in the mantle?