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1 The Anatomy of Chapter IV of a Dissertation Dr. Sharon A. McDade GSEHD, GWU.

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Presentation on theme: "1 The Anatomy of Chapter IV of a Dissertation Dr. Sharon A. McDade GSEHD, GWU."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 The Anatomy of Chapter IV of a Dissertation Dr. Sharon A. McDade GSEHD, GWU

2 GSEHD2 Overview of Chapter IV Typically entitled “Presentation of the Data” The least read chapter in the dissertation The set up for Chapter V Easiest to write for most students because it is a straightforward summary of all of the collected data

3 GSEHD3 Purposes of Chapter IV Present the full data related to the research sub questions, hypotheses Organize that data so reader can understand it Relate data to research questions Set up data for analysis in Chapter V where the data is given context and meaning

4 GSEHD4 Comparison of Chapters IV & V IV V The Chi-Square test was significant... This & that happened in the case study story... The interviews brought up themes of A, B, and C... So, what does that mean? What does that mean? How does it relate to the theory, literature? How do those themes relate to each other, the theory, literature?

5 GSEHD5 Types of Organizational Patterns Quantitative Data Presentation Qualitative Data Presentation –Interviews –Case Studies Mixed Methods Data Presentation History Data Presentation

6 GSEHD6 Quantitative Organization Introduction/set up of chapter Response rate Demographics Data typically organized by research questions or concepts Usually contained in only one chapter

7 GSEHD7 Qualitative Organization Intro/set up for chapter Response rate (typically detailed in III) Demographics (information about the subjects/sites) By research question, subject/site, themes May require more than one chapter for full presentation

8 GSEHD8 Mixed Methods Organization Intro/Set up for chapter By data collection source –Response rate –Demographics –Instrument organization May require more than one chapter if qualitative portion is extensive

9 GSEHD9 History Organization Emphasis on “telling the story” Usually organized into more than one data presentation chapter Organization by chronology, themes, issues, individuals – organization dictated by major research question Data, findings, and analysis usually presented simultaneously

10 GSEHD10 Introduction/Set Up for Chapter Brief – 1 or 2 paragraphs Restate overall purpose of study State organization of chapter (organizational statement)

11 GSEHD11 Response Rate Could be addressed in III or IV How many responded – raw numbers, percentages, by categories What is the bottom line of the number of people/cases in this data set? If information is complicated, summarize in a table Design issue—what did you do about the members of the sample who did not respond?

12 GSEHD12 Demographics Break down response rate by categories (individual, institutional categories, etc.) Compare to the sample you contacted, to the population Use numbers and percentages Summarize in tables Bottom line – who/what are in the data set and how does this compare to the demographics of the population? Design issue – based on the representativeness of the data set, with what vigor can you argue generalizability?

13 GSEHD13 Think in Terms of Tables, Figures Think of ways to summarize data into tables and figures Some readers read text, others read tables/figures A picture is worth a thousand words Think of tables that achieve multiple purposes

14 GSEHD14 Data Consolidation--Tables 1 table per page, each on own page Insert table on first page after first reference to the table APA format for tables Relationship of tables to text Use of bars, lines, dividers and white space, portrait/landscape orientation “Borrowed tables” need permission

15 GSEHD15 Data Consolidation -- Figures 1 figure per page, each on own page Insert figure on first page after first reference to figure APA format for headings for figures Portrait/landscape orientation Relationship of figures to text “Borrowed figures” need permission

16 GSEHD16 Qualitative Data Consolidation Whenever possible transfer qualitative data into “counts” or other quantitative data in tables Summary of qualitative data – in format easier for reader to scan Follow other tips for tables

17 GSEHD17 Strategies for Completion Figure out how you are going to present the data when you write Chapter III. Explain the data presentation schema there –- then just follow the scheme already laid out. Organize your data according to how you will present it. Write up data as you go along

18 GSEHD18 Traps to Avoid Data “ARE” (plural) Don’t explain in text everything that is in a table and vice versa Don’t become rote in presentation – vary sentence structure, paragraph structure BUT make certain you present data in similar format for each research question Be concise, focused, and brief Use the term “significant” correctly and judiciously

19 GSEHD19 Most Typical Feedback from Committee The data are not clear yet Too much explanation/too little explanation Too much analysis (belongs in V) Lots of good info here, but jumbled – organize, outline, use subheadings Can you capture that in a table, figure? Can you take that idea to another level of detail?

20 GSEHD20 It Helps If You... Have a writing group to look over your work to see if it is organized and makes sense Learned APA in coursework so you know how to handle the hierarchy of headings Learned APA for tables, figures During your proposal writing you looked at dissertations with your type of data to see models for presentation Documented in Chapter III how you would present your data so you can simply execute that organization now

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