STRUCTURE OF THE CHAPTER Approaching research planning A framework for planning research Conducting and reporting a literature review Searching for literature on the internet Orienting decisions in planning research Research design and methodology How to operationalize research questions Data analysis Presenting and reporting the results A planning matrix for research Managing the planning of research Ensuring quality in the planning of research
KINDS OF RESEARCH PURPOSE KINDS OF RESEARCH Does the research want to test a hypothesis or theory? Experiment, survey, action research, case study Does the research want to develop a theory? Ethnography, qualitative research, grounded theory Does the research need to measure? Survey, experiment Doe the research want to understand a situation? Ethnographic and interpretive/ qualitative approaches Does the research want to see what happens if... ? Experiment, participatory research, action research Does the research want to find out ‘what’ and ‘why’? Mixed methods research Does the research want to find out what happened in the past? Historical research
ELEMENTS OF RESEARCH DESIGN Statement of the problem/ what gave rise to the research; Grounding in literature; Constraints on the research (e.g. access, time, people, politics); Aims and purposes; Intended outcomes; Nature of the phenomena to be investigated Operationalizing research aims and purposes; Research questions; Foci of the research; Priorities for the research; Methodology/kind of research; Ethical issues; Ownership of the research and data; Politics of the research; Audiences of the research; Instrumentation; Sampling; Piloting; Time frames and sequence; Resources required; Reliability and validity: Data analysis; Verifying/validating data; Reporting/writing up the research.
WHAT KIND OF RESEARCH? Positivist Post-positivist Quantitative, scientific and hypothesis-testing Qualitative Interpretive Naturalistic Phenomenological Existential Interactionist Ethnographic Experimental Ideology critical Participatory Feminist Political Complexity theoretical Evaluative Mixed methods
A POSSIBLE SEQUENCE OF QUANTITATIVE RESEARCH 1.Literature review → 2.Generate and formulate the hypothesis/the theory to be tested/the research questions to be addressed → 3.Design the research to test the hypothesis/theory (e.g. an experiment a survey) → 4.Conduct the research → 5.Analyze results → 6.Consider alternative explanations for the findings → 7.Report whether the hypothesis/theory is supported or not supported, and/or answer the research questions → 8.Consider the generalizability of the findings.
A POSSIBLE SEQUENCE OF QUALITATIVE RESEARCH 1.Identify the topic/group/phenomenon for research → 2.Literature review → 3.Design research questions, research and data collection → 4.Locate fields of study and your role in the research/situation → 5.Locate informants, gatekeepers, sources of information → 6.Develop working relations with participants → 7.Conduct the research and the data collection simultaneously → 8.Conduct the data analysis either simultaneously, on an ongoing basis as the situation emerges and evolves, or conduct the data analysis subsequent to the research → 9.Report results and the grounded theory or answers to the research questions that emerge from the research → 10.Generate a hypothesis for further research or testing.
A POSSIBLE SEQUENCE OF MIXED METHODS RESEARCH Identify the problem or issue to investigate → Formulate research questions → Identify the several kinds of data and the methods for collecting them which, together and/or separately will yield answers to the research questions → Plan the mixed methods design (e.g. parallel mixed design, fully integrated mixed design, sequential mixed design → Conduct the research → Analyze results → Consider alternative explanations for the findings → Answer the research questions → Report the results.
MAXWELL’S INTERACTIVE MODEL OF RESEARCH DESIGN GOALS CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK RESEARCH QUESTIONS METHODS VALIDITY
A SEQUENCE OF CONSIDERATIONS PREPARATORY ISSUES METHODOLOGY SAMPLING & INSTRUMENTATION TIMING & SEQUENCING Ontology, epistemology, constraints, purposes, foci, ethics, research question, politics, literature review Approaches, reliability, validity Reliability, validity, piloting
A SEQUENCE OF CONSIDERATIONS ORIENTING DECISIONS RESEARCH DESIGN & METHODOLOGY DATA ANALYSIS PRESENTING AND REPORTING RESULTS E.G. SURVEY, EXPERIMENT, NATURALISTIC, CASE STUDY, ACTION RESEARCH, TESTING
ORIENTING DECISIONS 1.Who wants the research? 2.Who will receive the research? 3.What powers do the recipients of the research have? 4.What are the time scales of the research? 5.What are the purposes of the research? 6.What are the research questions? 7.What must be the focus in order to answer the research questions? 8.What costs are there – human, material, physical, administrative, temporal? 9.Who owns the research? 10.At what point does the ownership pass from the respondent to the researcher and from the researcher to the recipients?
RESEARCH DESIGN & METHODOLOGY 1.What are the specific purposes of the research? 2.How are the general research purposes and aims operationalized into specific research questions? 3.What are the specific research questions? 4.What needs to be the focus of the research in order to answer the research questions? 5.What is the main methodology of the research? 6.How will validity and reliability be addressed? 7.How will reflexivity be addressed? 8.What kinds of data are required? 9.From whom will data be acquired (i.e. sampling)? 10.Where else will data be available? 11.How will the data be gathered (i.e. instrumentation)? 12.Who will undertake the research?
DATA ANALYSIS 1.How will the data be analyzed? 2.How to verify and validate the data and their interpretation?
PRESENTING & REPORTING THE RESULTS 1.How to write up and report the research? 2.When to write up and report the research (e.g. ongoing or summative)? 3.How to present the results in tabular and/or written-out form? 4.How to present the results in non-verbal forms? 5.To whom to report (the necessary and possible audiences of the research)? 6.How frequently to report?
THE LITERATURE REVIEW MUST... Set out the argument(s) that it will advance. Set out points in favour of the argument(s) or thesis to be advanced/supported. Set out points against the argument(s) or thesis to be advanced/supported. Have a conclusion based on the points raised and evidence presented.
THE LITERATURE REVIEW... establishes and justifies the need for the research,its significance, originality and foci; establishes and justifies the methodology to be adopted; has an organized and developed argument, not just a descriptive summary; presents, contextualizes, analyzes, interprets, critiques, and evaluates sources and issues, not just accepting what they say; presents arguments and counter-arguments, evidence and counter-evidence about an issue; reveals similarities and differences between authors, about the same issue; states its purposes, foci, methods of working, organization and how it will move to a conclusion, i.e. what it will do, what it will argue, what it will show, what it will conclude, and how this links into or informs the subsequent research project;
THE LITERATURE REVIEW... is a springboard into, and foundation for, all areas and stages of the research in question: purpose, foci, research questions, methodology, data analysis, discussion and conclusions; must be conclusive; must be focused yet comprehensive in its coverage of relevant issues; must present both sides of an issue or argument; should address theories, models (where relevant), empirical research, methodological materials, substantive issues, concepts, content and elements of the field in question; must include and draw on many sources and types of written material and kinds of data.
SOURCES OF LITERATURE IN A LITERATURE REVIEW Books Journal articles: academic & professional Empirical research Non-empirical research Reports Policy documents Public and private records Research papers & reports Theses and dissertations Manuscripts Databases (hard copy/ online) Conference papers Electronic media Primary sources Secondary sources Tertiary sources
OPERATIONALIZING RESEARCH Specify a set of operations or behaviours that can be measured, addressed or manipulated. Translate a very general research aim or purpose into specific, concrete questions to which specific, concrete answers can be given. Move from the general to the particular, from the abstract to the concrete. Break down each general research purpose or general aim into more specific research purposes and constituent elements, continuing the process until specific, concrete questions have been reached to which specific answers can be provided.
A GOOD HYPOTHESIS... is clear on whether it is directional or non- directional; is written in a testable form; is written in a form that can yield measurable results.
A FOUR-STAGE PLANNING PROCESS STAGE ONE: IDENTIFY THE PURPOSES OF THE RESEARCH STAGE TWO: IDENTIFY AND GIVE PRIORITY TO THE CONSTRAINTS UNDER WHICH THE RESEARCH WILL TAKE PLACE STAGE THREE: PLAN THE POSSIBILITIES FOR THE RESEARCH WITHIN THESE CONSTRAINTS STAGE FOUR: DECIDE THE RESEARCH DESIGN
ENSURING QUALITY IN RESEARCH PLANNING (Furlong and Oancea, 2005) FITNESS FOR PURPOSE Theoretical and methodological robustness: –The trustworthiness’ of the research; –Its ‘contribution to knowledge’; –Its ‘explicitness in designing and reporting’; –Its ‘propriety’ (conformance to legal and ethical requirements); –The ‘paradigm-dependence’(fidelity to the paradigm, ontology and epistemological premises of the research) that the research demonstrates;
ENSURING QUALITY IN RESEARCH PLANNING (Furlong and Oancea, 2005) FITNESS FOR PURPOSE Value for use: –The ‘salience/timeliness’ of the research; –Its ‘purposivity’ (fitness for purpose); –Its ‘specificity and accessibility’(scope, responsiveness to user needs, and predicted usage); –Its ‘concern for enabling impact’(dissemination for impact); and –Its ‘flexibility and operationalisability’(development into practical terms and utility for audiences).
ENSURING QUALITY IN RESEARCH PLANNING (Furlong and Oancea, 2005) FITNESS FOR PURPOSE Capacity building and value for people: –‘Partnership, collaboration and engagement’; –‘Plausibility’ (‘from the practitioner’s perspective’); –‘Reflection and criticism’(research that develops reflexivity and self-reflection); –‘Receptiveness’(research that enhances the receptiveness of practitioners and a wider audience); –‘Stimulating personal growth’.
ENSURING QUALITY IN RESEARCH PLANNING (Furlong and Oancea, 2005) FITNESS FOR PURPOSE Economic dimension: –‘Cost-effectiveness’; –‘Marketability’ and ‘competitiveness’(e.g. in the research market); –‘Auditability’; –‘Feasibility’; –‘Originality’; –‘Value-efficiency’.