Difference Between Search and Research

Search and research are two very commonly used terms in various conversations. They are often confused for being the same thing, especially because of their similar composition in terms of spelling.

Search vs Research

The main difference between search and research is that search is the process of finding something by deliberately looking for it whereas research includes an element of deeper analysis as it is the process of collecting data and information, verifying it and thereby reaching a certain conclusion. Moreover, searching for something is not done in a systematic way, unlike researching. 

WPF vs ASP Search vs Research3

Search is a random process of looking for something in a non-systematic manner. This could be done in order to find a solution for something, a missing object or simply an answer to a question.

On the other hand, research is a systematic method of reaching conclusions. It is done by collecting data and information, verifying it and then analysing it.

Comparison Table Between Search and Research

Parameters of ComparisonSearchResearch
MeaningSearch is the process of looking for something in a non-systematic manner.Research is a process of reaching a conclusion in a systematic manner.
AimThe aim of searching is to find something.The aim of researching is to reveal new information and establish a correct conclusion based on that.
MethodSearching does not include structured techniques.Researching includes the collection of information, verification, analysis, and deduction.
Time SpanThe process of searching for something is generally short.The process of researching is long and complex.
QualificationNo qualification is required to search for something.Generally, a qualification is required to carry out a research project.
ControlSearching is not monitored or regulated.Research is monitored and regulated by someone other than the researcher.
DependencySearch is not dependent on research.Research is dependent on search.

Search is a term used to describe the process of looking for something using random methods and techniques. The questions and results involved are not very complex or detailed.

If a person has lost a belonging, he would ‘search’ for it. If NASA sends a rover to Mars, it is because they are ‘searching’ for signs of life. Moreover, if you look up information on the internet, you have conducted a ‘search’.

An important aspect of this is that a ‘search’ could be conducted by anyone at any place. A qualification or any other kind of threshold is not necessary.

Earlier, for gathering information or finding out answers, people used to give in to the methods of asking other people or looking for it in books.

What is Research?

Research is a systematic way of looking for something. It has more complexity and detail involved unlike when something is ‘searched’ for. However, to some extent, research is dependent on search.

If NASA ever found signs of life on Mars, the data of the search would be collected and analysed. It would then be used to establish certain facts and thereby reach a conclusion.

A certain qualification is required to carry out a research project. These qualifications are gained through PhD programs in which students are asked to conduct a thesis. In this, a student chooses a subject topic to work on.

Main Differences Between Search and Research

  1. A search is not monitored or regulated whereas research is monitored by a senior.
  2. Search is not dependent on research whereas research is dependent on search.
Difference Between Search and Research


Search and research are often confused for one another, but they have major differences between them. Search is a non-systematic process whereas research is a systematic one. While searching for something, there is no structured process involved.

Searching is not as complicated or detailed as the latter. For searching, a qualification is not required unlike researching, which requires a PhD. Moreover, a search is not monitored or regulated in any way whereas research is monitored by a senior.


  1. https://psycnet.apa.org/record/1966-04301-001
  2. https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=_tTnCAAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PR3&dq=search+vs+research&ots=YCxhkVxrX3&sig=ZJ-0E78lY4LIuQGZpdoIjsr3oSA

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