Research design is crucial to producing accurate and reliable results. A poor research design produces low-quality results and makes research unreliable, making it difficult for you to publish your work.

In this article, we will discuss the common mistakes that lead to poor research design.

Why Is Research Design So Important?

As a part of the academia, researchers must publish high-quality research. Publishing insightful research is the key to success in the field as it helps you secure funding for research projects and improves the understanding of that topic in your field.

Quality research design allows you to accomplish accurate, meaningful, and significant results, helping you set the foundation for your project. For instance, effective well-designed research enables you to optimize research for efficient data analysis, tackle critical issues you want to focus on, and create effective decision-making procedures.

By focusing on research design early, you can prevent critical issues at later stages of your research. It not only gives you ample time to organize the research procedure and yield accurate results, but it also makes it easier to set up relevant benchmarks for projects in the future.

With those efforts, you can avoid situations where you must deal with incomplete results and misleading conclusions. Remember, even seemingly minor research design issues can lead you to extraordinarily flawed conclusions.

As with any complex project, preparation can often take more time than the actual project. This happens mostly because projects become significantly easier with proper preparation. Imagine you are painting a room. You don’t want to paint the entire room, just certain sections of your room.

Unless you properly mark the sections of the wall with tape, you can accidentally paint where you don’t want to, thereby increasing the time and effort to complete the task. Likewise, if you don’t clean the area before painting, you won’t be satisfied with your results. Poor research design has similar consequences for your research.

Common Flaws of Poor Research Design

Here is a checklist of research design flaws you may want to avoid during research.

Ethical Implications

In your research design, it’s essential to mention how you minimize risk for study participants. At the same time, you must also ensure that you successfully address the research question or problem effectively. Otherwise, the validity and objectivity of the research may be questioned.

Invalid Theoretical Framework

A theoretical framework allows you to construct a logical basis for your study. Without a comprehensive logical hypothesis, it’s difficult to test a logical hypothesis.  It’s also important to ensure that your research has basic postulates and assumptions that can be tested by others. Otherwise, your research design may be flawed.


Researchers must ensure that their research design is concise and clear. Otherwise, the research design is not strong.

Lack of Comprehensive Literature Review

A literature review compares your study and research work with existing research work on that subject. If you don’t conduct a comprehensive literature review, it’s difficult to identify gaps in information and overall research assumptions.

Therefore, researchers may struggle at resolving those gaps. At the same time, the absence of a comprehensive literature review also makes it difficult to highlight the contributions of your research to a particular topic, because you don’t challenge or assess existing literature or attempt to relate new information to existing information.

Improper Statistical Analysis

Studies must be scientifically proven, requiring proper statistical analysis. However, failing to do so degrades the quality of quantitative research. As a result, it significantly degrades the quality of your experiment and makes it difficult to extract meaningful interpretations.

Unclear Research Problem

A comprehensive research design consists of a clear research problem. If your problem statement is not clear, it will be difficult for you to construct the framework for developing meaningful research questions address the core issue.

Research Limitations

All studies have limitations in some shape or form. As a researcher, it’s your responsibility to understand those limitations and incorporate them into your research design and findings. Consider adding a statement in your manuscript that addresses possible limitations. It would help if you add them in your conclusion.

Research Instruments and Techniques

What kind of tools are you using for research? Is the data relevant and updated? Does your research leverage the most trusted and reliable surveys? As a researcher, you must define relevant techniques and instruments in detail. Consider explaining how you are using them to address the research problem or question.

Poor Sampling

Sampling errors lead to biased conclusions in various ways. It is one of the most common flaws in research design. For instance, proximity sampling is a sampling error where the researcher only collects data from subjects who are easily accessible. Conclusions derived from poor sampling techniques are considered faulty and weak.

A poor research design can lead to a many issues, raising questions about the quality of your research and the usability of your findings. Our team can help you identify fundamental research design flaws before your work is submitted to peer criticism. We offer you comprehensive academic editing services; visit our website to learn more.