As you think about how you will test your hypotheses, you might consider a qualitative study (e.g. interviews, focus groups, case studies) or a quantitative study (e.g. surveys, experiments, mathematical modelling)...or a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods.
The library has a number of books on research methods -- the box on the right has a few examples. Please ask a librarian if you would like to find more books on research methods.