Difference Between Quantitative & Qualitative Objectives

Objectives help you reach your goals.

Objectives and goals often go hand-in-hand. To accomplish your goals, you need to meet specific steps or objectives. Goals are usually broad in scope, while objectives are narrower. For example, a student might have a goal to pass English class, but an objective to identify passive voice with 80 percent accuracy on an upcoming quiz.

1 Qualitative Objective

A qualitative objective is subjective and non-measurable. For example, if a teacher has an objective to get many of her students to understand beginning “m” and “s” sounds, then she has defined a qualitative objective. Is "many" half the class or is it three-quarters of the class? How do you know for sure when they have understood the concept of beginning “m” and “s” sounds? When they identify them one time or 20 times? There is no way to accurately measure this objective.

2 Significance of Qualitative

Since there is no accurate way to measure a qualitative objective, it makes it difficult to know when the objective has or has not been met. The results of qualitative objectives are open for debate or interpretation because the expected results are not strictly defined. This makes qualitative objectives useless for certain things like testing or other educational objectives.

3 Quantitative Objective

A quantitative objective is measurable. Some objectives, like test objectives, need to be measurable so that we can tell if they have been met. For example, if a teacher has an objective for 90 percent of her students to identify the beginning “m” and “s” sounds with 75 percent accuracy on the next quiz, she has defined a quantitative objective. There is a measurable way to see if the objective has been met.

4 Significance of Quantitative

If at least 18 out of 20 students answer at least 12 out of 16 questions correctly on the beginning “m” and “s” sounds quiz, the teacher has met her objective. If only 15 students answer at least 12 out of 16 questions correctly, then she has not met the objective. There is no room for debate or interpretation with quantitative objectives, like there is with qualitative objectives, because the expected results are strictly defined.