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Practice-Based Research Presenter: Rick Fisher Open Polytechnic of New Zealand.

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Presentation on theme: "Practice-Based Research Presenter: Rick Fisher Open Polytechnic of New Zealand."— Presentation transcript:

1 Practice-Based Research Presenter: Rick Fisher Open Polytechnic of New Zealand

2 Goals To define PBR To contrast PBR with other types of research To highlight the importance of PBR to New Zealand’s research environment To brainstorm some simple PBR methodologies

3 Background prep Review “how to conduct research” texts from various disciplines On-line digging Review NZQA/PBRF notions of research Summarise some personal experience FOR MORE INFO... Wilkinson, D (ed) (2000). The complete guide to practitioner research (London: Routledge).

4 If we had a full day… 1) Issues in PBR 2) Planning your research 3) Basic research methods 4) Completing a research proposal 5) Case study examples

5 What is Practice-Based Research? What is research?: an academic activity undertaken by researchers, to achieve specific goals using specific methods. Why? To contribute to a discipline, to inform policy, to address an issue Key distinctions of PBR: Is conducted for common sense or practical problem- solving reasons Is solution-focused, rather than a systematic enquiry characteristic of other research Example of systematic research: a masters degree, being a demonstration of an ability to systematically handle and analyze a problem

6 Why academics love to hate PBR Lacks a systematic, scientific rigour Can be self-evaluative and subjective Produces local, not international solutions May lack a theoretical basis (largely wrong criticism) Often collaborative, with little traction to create an individual research profile Superior view of blue skies, pure research as opposed to applied research Result of the love-to-hate relationship: Guess who gets the lowest PBRF rankings? The professions: nursing, education, some business

7 BUT what happens if no PBR? Without it, we are left with university-based research = research by academics, for academics = specialised knowledge, difficult to access, with questionable applied value Without it, we must resort to knowledge from authority, or knowledge from personal enquiry, and self-corrective practice (uh oh!)

8 Example of a personal enquiry misstep Provide an explanation for this issue/problem: A man and his son are involved in an automobile accident. The man is killed and the boy seriously injured, and rushed to hospital. But the surgeon takes one look at the boy and says, “I am sorry, but I cannot operate on this boy. He is my son.” (Seltitz et al 1976)

9 Example of failure to consider PBR Agriculture and the green revolution. Pure research showed: 1) That science could help third world countries 2) That third world farmers were considered to be locked into old ways 3) Resistance resulted in benefits only to large farms Result of injection of PBR: -more local buy-in, incorporation of local knowledge and practices

10 Why engage in PBR at the OP? 1) Pecuniary reward: PBR is often commission- based research 2) Time rewards & professional advancement: review your contracts and any KRAs/agreements 3) Staying atop your discipline (e.g. elearning: - pedagogical research, technical research, organisational research, socio-cultural research: all of these relate to PBR) 4) Obligations to your profession/successors

11 Primary examples of PBR 1) Action research 2) Case studies 3) Field experiments 4) Focus groups 5) Surveys 6) Simulation

12 Where to from here? Explore membership in professional societies (including simple email lists and feeds) Attend at least one conference a year Submit an abstract Find out what others are doing Other options?

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