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The RM4Es (research methods four elements) include the followings:

1)   Equation - used to represent the models and frameworks for our research, which serve as a link between data and research ideas or designs.

2)   Estimation - the link between equations (models) and the data used for our research. Estimations in the modern era have always to be completed by fast computing.

3)   Errors (Evaluation of Models) - used to evaluate the fit between models and the data, which also evaluate estimation methods.

4)   Explanation / Execution - the link between equations (models) and our research purposes. How we explain our research results often depends on our research purposes and also on the subject we are studying. With modern technologies available, we often execute our research insights directly to generate good impacts.


The RM4Es are the key four aspects that distinguish one research method from another. In the empirical research community, people sometimes say "using multiple regression method to estimate structural equation models" that often confuses people. What they are trying to say is actually  "using OLS method to estimate a set of structural equations". Clearly using the RM4Es terms can help avoid misunderstanding and help to make research methods easy.

The RM4Es are sufficient to represent a research status at any given moment, per the past research conducted by our institute and others.  Furthermore, using RM4Es can easily and sufficiently represent research flows and research maps.

The RM4Es framework is one of the best tools for instructors and students to organize research methods and statistics knowledge. It is an excellent assessment tool used by many RM instructors, and also a self-assessment tool used by our students.

At the same time, the RM4Es framework is also a good system for research flow management. The research flow management systems developed on the RM4Es and other RM principles are helping researchers to improve research quality and research productivity.