Creswell defines Educational Research as 'A cyclical process of steps that typically begins with identifying a research problem or issue of study. It then involves reviewing the literature, specifying a purpose for the study, collecting and analyzing data, and forming an interpretation of information. This process culminates in a report, disseminated to audiences, that is evaluated and used in the educational community'.

Good research in education is needed to:
address gaps in existing knowledge
to improve quality of the teaching learning process
to solve problems associated with education
to try new techniques to enhance the effectiveness of learning

Types of research in education include:
Quantitative Research which uses descriptive and inferential statistics to answer the 'what' type of questions

Qualitative Research which uses descriptive and thematic analysis to answer the 'why' an'how' questions

Mixed Method Research that looks at multi method approaches

This link explains the research process in a lucid manner. Click

Learn about Variables in Research

Read these books for a good basis in research

Research Methods in Education

Educational Research

Educational Research: Some Basic Concepts published by UNESCO