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Research Concepts Summary

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The group moves through 4 stages: Planning Acting Observing reflecting This research is popular among: Organizational management Community development Education Agriculture Ethnography is another type of research, the emphasis is on describing and interpreting cultural behavior.The researchers participate in group activities while observing their behavior, taking notes and conducting interviews etc.It may also be called ‘Fieldwork or ‘Participant observation’ Feminist research is yet another type of research.

There was an argument of whether this was a methodology (general principle which will guide your research) r an Epistemology (study of nature of knowledge and Justification, it looks where the knowledge came from and how we know what we know).

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But it can be both. Feminist research is about the fact that mostly male people are used for research and when a research is called objective and scientific truth when only used male participants, that’s not right. It’s emphasis is on participative, qualitative inquiry. Feminist research has provided a framework for researchers who do not want to treat people as research objects.

Grounded theory: The emphasis in this methodology is on the generation of theory which is grounded n the data – this means that it has emerged from the data. Grounded theory is therefore flexible and enables new issues to emerge that the researcher may not have thought about previously. Triangulation: Combining qualitative and quantitative research. Unstructured interviews: As less questions as possible Participant free to talk about what he/she demands only for qualitative research Semi-structured interviews: researcher wants to know specific information which can be compared.

Same questions have to be asked but the researcher can be flexible There is a need of an interview schedule Qualitative social research Structured interviews: Asks a series of questions and ticks boxes Used in quantitative research Focus Groups may also be called discussion groups or group interviews. The discussion is led by a moderator or facilitator who introduces the topic, asks specific questions, controls digressions and stops break-away conversations. She makes sure no one dominates the group and everyone contributes.

Focus groups Advantages Disadvantages Can receive a wide range of responses during one meeting. Some people may be uncomfortable in a group setting and nervous about speaking in front of others. Participants can ask questions of each other, lessoning impact of researcher bias. Not everyone may contribute. Helps people to remember issues they might otherwise have forgotten Other people may contaminate an individual’s views. Helps participants to overcome inhibitions, especially if they Some researchers may find it difficult or intimidating to moderate a focus group.

The group effect is a useful resource in data analysis. Venues and equipment can be expensive. Participant interaction is useful to analyses Difficult to extract individual views during the analysis. 3 types of Questionnaires: . Closed-ended questionnaires This type of questionnaire is used to generate statistics. They follow a set format, and most of them can be imported into a program to generate it’s data. 2. Open-ended questionnaires Are used in qualitative research, although some researchers will quantify the answers during the analysis stage.

This will not only be box ticking but there will also be space for the participant to fill in their own answers. This kind of questionnaire might also focus on what people think about a certain thing which make it more difficult to analyses the data. 3. Combination of both Many researchers use this combination to get either qualitative and quantitative data. Market research and online poll companies pay their participants money to fill in their questionnaire which makes the participants loyal followers and receive data earlier because they can work with deadlines.

However, in this research participants are self-selecting, they do this on a voluntary basis and maybe they only do it for the money. There are 2 ways researchers observe: Participant observation “they participate in the group they’re observing” Direct observation “Just look at the people you’re observing, mostly used in psychology’ search Overt: Overt participant observation, where everyone knows who’s the researcher and what she’s doing. Chapter 4 Secondary research: collection of information from studies that other researchers have made of a subject.

Primary research: Research you conduct yourself Primary research Secondary research Relevant people Research books Researcher observation Research reports Researcher experience Journal articles Historical records/texts Articles reproduced online Company/organization records Scientific debates Personal documents (diaries) Critiques of literary works Statistical data Critiques of art Works of literature Analyses of historical events Works of art Film/ video Laboratory experiments Summary There are two types of background research – primary and secondary research.

Primary research involves the study of a subject through first hand observation and investigation. Secondary research involves the collection of information from studies quickest way to access secondary sources are libraries or the internet. Any information obtained from secondary sources must be carefully assessed for its relevance and accuracy. Notes from primary and secondary sources should be ruefully filed and labeled so that the source can be found again, if required. When noting details for books, reports or articles which may appear in the final report, include all the details which would be needed for the bibliography.

Chapter 5 2 different ways of sampling: Purposive sampling: Snowball sample: Ask one person for more names who are likely to help. Quota sample: to make sure all the groups in a community are represented. Theoretical sampling: Using this method the emerging theory helps the researcher to choose the sample a convenience sample: The researcher is a teacher himself and decides to interview colleagues, as he has limited time and resources available to him. Cluster sample: a random cluster of e. G. Schools in a geographic area is chosen to convey research Random sample: Randomly generate. Quasi-random sample or systematic sample: Using this method he chooses a random point on the list and then every third pupil is selected stratified random sample: Using this method the researcher stratifies his sample by subject area and then chooses a random sample of pupils from each subject area.

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Disproportionate stratified sample: increase the sample size of the science pupils to make sure that his ATA are meaningful If it is not possible to contact everyone in the research population, researchers select a number of people to contact. This is called sampling.

There are two main types of sampling category – probability samples and purposive samples. In probability samples, all people within the research population have a specifiable chance of being selected Only within random samples do participants have an equal chance of being selected Purposive samples are used if generalization is not the point The size of sample will depend upon the type and purpose of the research Sample sizes should take into count issues of non-response Remember that with postal surveys it might be difficult to control and know who has filled in the questionnaire.

Will this affect your sample? In some purposive samples it is difficult to specify at the sampling techniques within one project which may help to overcome some of the disadvantages found within different procedures. Chapter 6 The content of a proposal: 1. Title Should be short and explanatory 2. Background Why are you undertaking the project? Why is the research needed? You need to show that you know what you’re talking about. 3. Aims and objectives

The aim is the overall driving force of the research and the objectives are the means by which you intend to achieve the aims. These must be clear and succinct. Why have you decided upon your methodology? Why have you decided to chose those particular methods? Why are other methods not appropriate? This section needs to include details about samples, numbers of people to be contacted, method of data collection, methods of data analyses and ethical considerations. . Timetable A detailed timetable scheduling all aspects of the research should be produced. 6. Budget and resources If you’re applying to a funding body you need to think about what you will need for your research and how much this is likely to cost. 7. Dissemination What do you expect to do with the results of your research? How are you going to let people know about what you have found out?

Reasons good proposal Reasons why proposals fail Relevance, either to the work of the funding body or to the student’s course Aims and objectives are unclear of vague The research is unique, or offers new insight or development There is a mismatch between the approach being adopted and the issues to be addressed The title, aims ND objectives are all clear and succinct The overall plan is too ambitious and difficult to achieve in the timescale Comprehensive and thorough background research and literature review has been undertaken The researcher does not seem to have conducted enough in-depth background research There is a good match between the issues to be addressed and the approach being adopted Problem is of insufficient importance The researcher demonstrates relevant background knowledge and/or experience Information about the data collection method is insufficiently detailed Timetable, sources and budget have all been worked out thoroughly, with most eventualities covered Information about the data analysis method is insufficiently detailed Useful policy and practice implications Timescale is inappropriate or unrealistic Resources and budget have not been carefully thought out This topic has been done too many times before – indicates a lack of background research Most research projects will require the production of research proposal which sets out clearly and succinctly you proposed project. Before you write your proposal, check whether you need to produce it in a specific format

The standard research proposal should include the following: – title – background (including literature search) – aims and objectives – methodology/methods – timetable – budget and resources – dissemination. Research proposals stand a better chance of being accepted if you’re able to prove that you have the required knowledge and/or experience to carry out the research effectively. It is important to make sure that your proposed methods will address the problem you have identified and that you are able to display an understanding of these methods. Chapter 7 For most types of interview you need to construct an interview schedule. For structured interviews you will need to construct a list of questions which is asked in the same order and format to each participant.

For semi-structured interviews the schedule may be in the form of a list of questions or a list of topics. However, a list of topics tends to offer more flexibility, especially in unstructured interviews where the interviewee is left to discuss issues she deems to be important. By ticking off each topic from your list as it is discussed, you can ensure that all topics have been covered. An interviewer has to establish rapport before a participant will share personal information with him/her, there are a number of ways to do this: Treat interviewees with respect Think about your appearance Think about body language Firm eye contact Don’t invade their space That’s interesting; can you explain that in more detail?

I’m not quite sure I understand. You were saying? Can you elaborate a little more? Could you clarify that? Could you expand upon that a little? When you say ‘ . ‘, what do you mean? Practice with the recording equipment before the interview takes place. It might be useful to conduct some pilot interviews so that you can become familiar with the recording equipment. Develop an interview schedule, starting with general, non- personal issues. Check the recording equipment works and make sure you have enough tapes, disks, memory and/or batteries, paper, pens etc. Check that you have a suitable venue in which to carry out the interview, free from noise and interruptions.

Make sure you know how to get the interview and arrive in good time. Dress and behave appropriately Establish report Negotiate a length of time for the interview and stick to it, unless the interviewee is happy to continue. Ask open questions, listen to responses and probe where necessary. Keep questions short and to the point. Avoid Jargon, double-barreled questions and leading questions Listen carefully and acknowledge that you are listening Check recording equipment is working without drawing attention to it Repeat and summaries answers to aid clarity and understanding Achieve closure, thank them and leave a contact number in case they wish to get in touch with you about anything that has arisen.

Respect their confidentiality – do not pass on what has been said to third parties unless you have requested permission to do so Chapter 8 Asking questions Easy to ask questions should be asked first in focus groups, personal disclosure is costly in the ending phase of an interview/ or such like it. Make sure that no one person dominates the discussion as this will influence your data. Seeking responses You have to use your discretion about how much you do this as there might be occasions when somebody is unwilling or too nervous to contribute. Often, some of the most useful and pertinent information is given once the ‘official’ time is over. Also, you will find that people talk to you on an individual basis after the group has finished, especially those who might have been nervous contributing in a group setting.

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