Difference between Qualitative and Quantitative

Key difference: Qualitative refers to specific qualities or an attribute that an object or person possesses, whereas quantitative refers to the specific quantity associated with an object or person.

The term ‘quantitative’ is defined as:

  • Expressed as quantity
  • Relating to, or susceptible of measurement
  • Relating to number or quantity

It simply means that quantity refers to numbers.


Quantitative refers to the specific quantity associated with an object or person. A quantity is something that can be counted or measured. It refers to the amount or the magnitude of the object being described. A quantity can be definitively measured or quantified. Some examples of quantitative terms would be: hot, cold, long, short, fast, slow, large, small, many, heavy, few, light, near, far, etc.

Quantitative is considered objective and scientific in nature. It is used in scientific procedures that primarily involve objects; it is a term which is associated with anything practical.

The term ‘qualitative’ is defined as:

  • Relating to or concerned with qualities
  • Of or relating to how good something is
  • Relating to quality of something

It simply means that quality refers to a specific quality of an object or a person.

Qualitative refers to the specific qualities that an object or person possesses. A quality is either a property or an attribute that an object possesses. It is used to describe what the object or person is like. A quality is subjective and cannot be definitively measured; it can only be experienced. Some examples of qualitative terms would be: good, bad, beautiful, ugly, useless, fascinating, boring, filthy, sparkling, pale, dark, soft, hard, wonderful, colorful, evil, angelic, etc.

Qualitative is considered subjective in nature. It is generally used in the forms of appreciation such as poetry, literature and music; it is associated with creativity. Qualitative terms are used in sentences where impressions of the object is more important than its actual physical specifications.

Comparison between Qualitative and Quantitative:

 

Qualitative

Quantitative

Definition

It is defined as the specific qualities that an object or person possesses.

It is defined as the specific quantity associated with an object or person.

Terms

Properties used to describe subjective terms.

Properties used to describe objective terms.

Measurement

It cannot be measured.

It can be measured.

Reference

It refers to quality.

It refers to number.

Nature

It is subjective in nature.

It is objective or scientific in nature.

Association

It is associated with the term creativity.

It is associated with anything practical.

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Comments

Qualitative differences could be meassured: ie; silver, gold and led. Three metals. Three qualities. Could be: an ounce of each would be different in value. Different weights of each could render same value more led, could get to equal the value of silver and more silver could equal the value of gold. But their qualities would stay the same. So as objects they can be meassured, and as of durability they also can be meassured. And their quality determined. So time and eternity have also differences that are infitely qualitative...

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