Presentation on theme: "Research Methods Using a Structured Model"— Presentation transcript:
1 Research Methods Using a Structured Model Jon Simon, HUBSBMAF Subject Centre and University of Hull Small Teaching/Research Grant
2 What does the Model do? Helps students: Develop their own research proposalStructure their own research projectSummarise empirical research papers/projectsCritically review empirical research papers/projectsHelps educators:Structure a research methods moduleStructure an e-Bridge research methods site
3 Based on Kolb’s Experiential Learning Theory Concrete ExperienceActive ExperimentationReflective ObservationAbstract Conceptualization
4 Why Use Kolb’s Model? Covered in study skills modules. One of the best known learning theories in management education.Based on a series of respected psychological theories/models including Dewey’s pragmatism, Lewin’s social psychology, Piaget’s cognitive-development, Rogers’s client-centred therapy, Maslow’s humanism (Kolb, 1984, p. 15)Central role of experience.Effective learning (and research) involves all 4 stages.
5 Using Gowin’s Vee To Develop Kolb’s Learning Cycle into a Research Methods Model Any one heard of Gowin’s Vee?Model for conducting research in the natural sciences.Consists of a series of components that fit well around Kolb’s Learning Cycle.Called the Kolb/Gowin Research Methods ModelAssumption = each of Kolb’s 4 stages required in a research project.See Handout for Model
6 What is the Kolb/Gowin Model? Objects/Events: What aspects of the business world does the research study investigate?What, Who, Where, When, How ManyConcrete Experience
7 What is the Kolb/Gowin Model? Purpose: What is the purpose of the research?Focus Questions: What are the big questions the research seeks to answer?Reflective ObservationWorldview: How might the researchers’ background & belief influence/bias the investigation?
8 What is the Kolb/Gowin Model? Abstract ConceptualizationTheories:Whattheories are guiding the investigation?Categorises/ Constructs:How doexperts link / categoriesthese key concepts?Concepts:What arethe keyconceptsexperts usewhen talkingabout thetopic?
9 What is the Kolb/Gowin Model? Value Claims: What are the limitations, recommendationsand implementation issuesarising from the results?Results: What are the results of the research?ActiveExperimentationData Analysis: How is data analysed?Data Collection: How is data collected?Assumptions: Upon what research philosophies and approaches does the data collection/analysis rest?Hypotheses / Principles: Whatprinciples / hypotheses are guiding data collections?
10 What is the Kolb/Gowin Model? Word template with text boxesThree examples of its use:Student research proposal.Summarise empirical research paper.Critically review a research paper.
11 Who has the Model been used with? Second year HUBS undergraduate research methods module – assessment is a student research proposal & presentation.MBA research methods module – assessment is a student research proposal. Model to be used as an entrance to an e-Bridge blended learning site.PhD student – preparation for Viva.
12 Assessing Quality/Validity of Students Proposals Kolb’s Theory of Learning DevelopmentNot so widely knownThree levels:Acquisition Level = Basic knowledge of component.Specialization Level = Component contains appropriatedetails concerning the projectIntegration Level = Do all the components fitto tell a clear consistent story.Validity
13 Do students like the Model? Quantitative & Qualitative Evaluation Second year undergraduate accounting and finance (103), business (38), economics (13), marketing (27), logistics (6) and management (18) students on a research methods module: Age: Under % % Over % Gender: Male 63.5% Female 36.5% Home Country: UK 59.3% Other European 5.9% China /SE Asia 28.9% Other 5.9%
14 Do students like the Model? Qualitative Evaluation RankPlease state the one thing you most liked about the Model%Examples of student responses1Provides a useful structure36Organized method of decomposing research.It helped me break down my research topic and allowed me to concentrate on only the relevant information I needed.I like the fact of the different headings which helped to break the research down into the categories.2Understandable23Easy to understand3Specific components134Helps thinking about the research process9It got me thinking outside the brackets.It makes you think about your project in stages-allows you to break it down into sections.5Comprehensive7It was easier continuing with topic once identified all parts.Makes you address all issues6Focused attention on empirical aspects of the research processThis lead me to get the primary research for the proposal.7 plusProvides a useful summary (2%), Aides communication (4%), Helps get started (2%), 5 Ws (1%) and shows how research is about learning (1%)
15 Do students like the Model? Qualitative Evaluation RankPlease state the one thing you most disliked about the Model%Examples of student responses1Specific components, particularly the abstract conceptual components and worldview.31e.g. categories/constructs box, theories.2Difficult and complex to apply30Hard to fill in all the sections.Choosing which part of the research covers which category.3Takes too long12Tedious, annoying and time consuming.4Too restricting6Cannot fit a lot of information on.5Too simplisticNot comprehensive enough.Did not help me make research decisions.Did not help me choose a topic or decide what data analysis to use.7 plusSome components are too similar to differentiate (2%), Not convinced all components are necessary (2%), Not suitable for all topics (2%), Not hierarchical (1%) Focused on research projects rather than proposals (1%), Relevance of Kolb’s learning cycle (1%) and Repetitive (1%).
16 Further DevelopmentsDiagnostic questionnaire to identify issues students may find problematic in preparing research projects/proposals, based on Kolb’s Learning Styles Inventory.Sister Model developed to help students prepare a Critical Thinking piece of work e.g. Cases and argument-based essays. Based on Richard Paul’s critical thinking components.Being used as the structure for an e-Bridge MBA research methods module.
17 Conclusions Model helps business school students: Develop research projects & proposals andUnderstand and be critical of research studies.All on one side of A4!Helps educators efficiently review students research proposals as highlights misunderstandings and can see quickly the strengths and weaknesses.Stresses importance of the logical interconnection between these issues (i.e. Validity).Facilitates discussion of philosophical issues (induction/deduction, empiricism, rationalism, ...)Students generally liked the Model.Business school educators generally like the Model.
18 Kolb/Gowin Research Methods Model Could you use the Model in your subject? Thanks for listening (if you were listening) Any questions?