Advances research methods and proposal writing Ronan Fitzpatrick School of Computing, Dublin Institute of Technology. September 2008.
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Advances research methods and proposal writing Ronan Fitzpatrick School of Computing, Dublin Institute of Technology. September 2008
Overview Introduction to the research module Aim Philosophy Learning outcomes Learning and teaching methods Research Methodology
Advanced Research Methods and Proposal Writing Aim
MSc (Information Technology) Philosophy Focus is organisational Information Technology initiatives Trained to undertake research and develop research proposals Trained to critically analyse and synthesise appropriate research literature Trained to identify and utilize correct analysis techniques for a range of IT-Based scenarios.
Describe and apply a range of commonly appropriate methods and tools for creative thinking and problem solving Differentiate between a variety of sources in the Information Technology field, and their particular strengths/weaknesses Apply referencing and citations Explain the importance of academic and industry experts in an area of Information Technology MSc (Information Technology ) Learning outcomes
Explain the ethical issues associated with collecting and publishing research information Explain the use and techniques associated with quantitative and qualitative research methods for conducting primary and secondary research in the area of Information Technology Select appropriate research methods for specific research questions Employ appropriate data analysis techniques for specific sets of data MSc (Information Technology) Learning outcomes
Employ specific data gathering techniques for specific problem areas Formulate a research programme for a given research topic Select a topic from the course and/or their own experience which will provide suitable scope for research in an MSc dissertation project Demonstrate good technical writing skills Prepare and present a detailed realistic research proposal supported by a review of the relevant literature. MSc (Information Technology) Learning outcomes
Lectures, seminars and discussions Use library and Internet-based research tools Emphasis is placed on independent research and study, problem-solving skills, effective communications and the ability to work in teams. Emphasis is placed on a pro-active approach by students to problem identification, discuss and solutions Student responsibility for own learning. Learning and teaching methods
Conclusion Aim Philosophy Learning outcomes Learning and teaching methods
Methodology According to Avison and Fitzgerald (1988) Philosophy Model Techniques Scope Outputs Practice Product
Research methodology The body of rules and methods that support a process of enquiry Qualitative research Quantitative research
Qualitative research Developed in the social sciences to enable researchers to study social and cultural phenomena. Method Examples are Action research, Case study research and Ethnography. Data sources include Observation and Participant observation (fieldwork), Interviews and Questionnaires, Documents and texts, and the Researcher’s impressions and reactions.
Quantitative research Developed in the natural sciences to study natural phenomena Method examples include Survey methods Laboratory experiments Formal methods (e.g. econometrics) Numerical methods such as mathematical modeling.
Phases of Research (Fenton & Pfleeger, 1996;125) Conception Hypothesis & design Preparation Execution and data gathering Analysis and conclusions Documentation
Literature review Definition A comprehensive study, critical analysis and authoritative presentation of the published research and practice in a domain of investigation.
Comprehensive study Focus The focus is Information Technology. Width Seminal sources. Information Technology topics (PESTLE). Depth Detail to suit target audience. (will the audience understand).
Critical Analysis Critique Comment on what is good as well as what might be inappropriate. Argument Substantiate any alternative perspective or interpretation of the research material. Synthesis Propose an enhanced alternative.
Authoritative presentation Written presentation Highest standard (academic and professional) Structure and content Format - Language, vocabulary and style Illustration and appearance Citation and Bibliography. Repeatable Must be possible for researchers to revisit your sources Explain and clarify how your synthesis is an enhanced alternative.
Overall impression Scholarly and Authoritative Based on seminal sources Dated/modern sources Depth & breadth Completeness of research Content balance Argument & critique - The ‘so what?’ factor Vocabulary – Evidence of having researched and understood the domain.
Tips of the masters Read – appropriate publications Listen – to seminar presenters Ask – questions of everybody Observe – in places that you can access Think – and form opinion Write – based on what you read, hear and observe Read what you write, enhance it, read it again and enhance it again – at least twice.
Other sources MSc programme at School of Computing since 1995 Many dissertations Research papers Build on what you already know.