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Research Methods Using Kolb/Gowin Model Jon Simon The University of Hull BMAF Teaching/Research Grant Funds to visit 5 universities – staff workshops 1.

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Presentation on theme: "Research Methods Using Kolb/Gowin Model Jon Simon The University of Hull BMAF Teaching/Research Grant Funds to visit 5 universities – staff workshops 1."— Presentation transcript:

1 Research Methods Using Kolb/Gowin Model Jon Simon The University of Hull BMAF Teaching/Research Grant Funds to visit 5 universities – staff workshops 1

2 Uses of the Kolb/Gowin Model? Helps students: Develop their own research proposals. Summarise and understand empirical research papers. Structure their own research projects. Assumption: project involves collection & analysis of data, but can be adapted to a critical thinking or report writing model. 2

3 What is the Kolb/Gowin Model? See handout of model pro-forma. Word templete Why base on Kolb? One of the best known learning theories. Central role of experience. Student cover in Study Skills Module. Effective learning involves all 4 stages. Individuals preferences for stages – Learning Style Inventory. Inductive & deductive approaches built in. Components mainly from Gowins Vee but some from Pauls Critical Thinking Model. Example of its use to summarize a published paper – see Sheltons auditing paper handout. Example of its use to prepare a research proposal – see my accounting probability proposal. 3

4 Introducing Kolbs Experiential Learning Theory Covered in first year skills modules. When you buy new mobile phone. How do you go about using it? 1.Base your understanding on your last phone as they cant be that different. 2.Watch other people with a similar phone. 3.Read the instruction manual in detail to see what it can do. 4.Read the quick start guide and work the rest out for yourself. From Kolbs web site 4

5 Kolbs Experiential Learning Theory Concrete Experience (CE) Experiencing Reflective Observation (RO) Observing Active Experimentation (AE) Acting Abstract Conceptualization (AC) Thinking 5

6 Validity Do all the components fit to tell a clear consistent story. Internal & external validity. 6

7 How has the Model been used? Second year undergraduates research methods module – assessment is a student research proposal & presentation – see examples in handouts. MBA students – assessment is a student research proposal & to be used a entrance to an e-based blended learning site. PhD student – preparation for Viva. 7

8 Two Examples of Students Work See handout - can you evaluate each? 8

9 Potential Advantages Builds upon study skills module. Research project / proposal summarized on one side of A4. Helps students see how knowledge has to be constructed. Scaffolding or framework upon which to construct knowledge. Aides communication & (self) review. Highlights misunderstandings. Focuses attention on key research issues or components which need addressing in ANY research project (checklist). Omissions sometimes obvious. Can see quickly the strengths and weaknesses of a proposal/project. Stresses importance of the logical interconnection between these issues (i.e. Validity). Facilitates discussion of philosophical issues. 9

10 Potential Problems Complexity Difficult terminology Student apathy 10

11 How can the Model be Introduced? Involve students in collecting own data – based on Novak & Gowin (1984) – see later slides and handout. 11

12 Do students like the Model? Quantitative Evaluation Second year undergraduate accounting & finance students on a research methods module: Age: Under 22 71% 22-24 25% Over 24 4% Gender: Male 66% Female 34% Home Country: UK 38% Other European 11% China /SE Asia 44% Other 7% 12

13 Quantitative Evaluation How useful did you find the Kolb Research Methods Model in Preparing Your Research Proposal? (n=56) Very Useful 14% Quite Useful 68% Undecided 13% Of Little Use 5% Of No Use 0% 13

14 Quantitative Evaluation How useful did you find the Kolb Research Methods Model in Summarizing a Research Paper? (n=56) Very Useful 26% Quite Useful 55% Undecided 12% Of Little Use 7% Of No Use 0% 14

15 Quantitative Evaluation The Model provided me with an understanding of the nature of knowledge and how it might be created (n=58) Strongly agree 11% Agree 72% Neutral / Undecided 12% Disagree 5% Strongly disagree 0% 15

16 Quantitative Evaluation The Model reminded me to undertake effective reflection in preparing my research proposal (n=57) Strongly agree 19% Agree 63% Neutral / Undecided 16% Disagree 2% Strongly disagree 0% 16

17 Quantitative Evaluation The Purpose component in the Model was useful in getting me to think about why I am preparing the research proposal (n=58) Strongly agree 38% Agree 43% Neutral / Undecided 12% Disagree 7% Strongly disagree 0% 17

18 Quantitative Evaluation The Model provides a good way of visualizing the research process (n=58) Strongly agree 23% Agree 57% Neutral / Undecided 20% Disagree 0% Strongly disagree 0% 18

19 Quantitative Evaluation The need to complete the Objects/Events component was useful in getting my research proposal started by forcing me to identify the key aspects of my topic (n= 57) Strongly agree 25% Agree 47% Neutral / Undecided 16% Disagree 12% Strongly disagree 0% 19

20 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in stopping me jumping into the project without sufficient reflection (n=57) Strongly agree 11% Agree 42% Neutral / Undecided 35% Disagree 9% Strongly disagree 3% 20

21 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in planning my research proposal (n=57) Strongly agree 30% Agree 51% Neutral / Undecided 16% Disagree 3% Strongly disagree 0% 21

22 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in providing a structure for my research proposal (n=57) Strongly agree 32% Agree 53% Neutral / Undecided 14% Disagree 2% Strongly disagree 0% 22

23 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in helping me know where particular research topics / lectures / readings fitted into the research process (n=57) Strongly agree 16% Agree 32% Neutral / Undecided 37% Disagree 12% Strongly disagree 3% 23

24 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in helping me know what to include and exclude in my research proposal (n=57) Strongly agree 14% Agree 49% Neutral / Undecided 21% Disagree 12% Strongly disagree 4% 24

25 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in helping me prepare the research proposal in allotted time (n= 56) Strongly agree 4% Agree 52% Neutral / Undecided 29% Disagree 14% Strongly disagree 2% 25

26 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in helping me identifying an appropriate conceptual / theoretical framework for my research proposal (n= 55) Strongly agree 9% Agree 60% Neutral / Undecided 13% Disagree 16% Strongly disagree 2% 26

27 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in helping me identifying an appropriate methodology for my research proposal (n=56) Strongly agree 112% Agree 43% Neutral / Undecided 23% Disagree 18% Strongly disagree 4% 27

28 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in helping me identify relevant literature for my research proposal (n=57) Strongly agree 12% Agree 33% Neutral / Undecided 26% Disagree 27% Strongly disagree 2% 28

29 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in helping me summarize and analysis literature for my research proposal (n=57) Strongly agree 21% Agree 42% Neutral / Undecided 30% Disagree 7% Strongly disagree 0% 29

30 Quantitative Evaluation The Model was useful in helping me present and communicate my research proposal to others (n=57) Strongly agree 21% Agree 47% Neutral / Undecided 23% Disagree 9% Strongly disagree 0% 30

31 Quantitative Evaluation How useful did you find the Ws (What, Who, When Where, How Many, How and Why) in Preparing Your Research Proposal? (n= 57) Very useful 21% Quite useful 46% Undecided 19% Of little use 12% Of no use 2% 31

32 Do students like the Model? Qualitative Evaluation Rank Please state the one thing you most liked about the Model %Examples of student responses 1Provides a useful structure38 Organized 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. 2 Helps thinking about the research process 16 It got me thinking outside the brackets. It makes you think about your project in stages-allows you to break it down into sections. 2Understandable16Easy to understand 4Specific components14 5Comprehensive12 It was easier continuing with topic once identified all parts. Makes you address all issues 6 Focused attention on empirical aspects of the research process 2This lead me to get the primary research for the proposal. 6The 5 Ws 2Breakdown of the 5 Ws 32

33 Do students like the Model? Qualitative Evaluation Rank Please state the one thing you most disliked about the Model %Examples of student responses 1 Specific components, particularly the abstract conceptual components and worldview. 37%e.g. categories/constructs box, theories. 2Difficult and complex to apply23% Hard to fill in all the sections. Choosing which part of the research covers which category. 3Takes too long12%Tedious, annoying and time consuming. 4Some components are too similar to differentiate7% Is very similar between the purpose and some parts of objects/events. 4Too restricting7%Cannot fit a lot of information on. 6Not convinced all components are necessary5%Is it necessary to fill in each box. 7Not suitable for all topics2%Not suitable for every topic. 8Kolbs learning cycle2%The learning diagram in the middle. 9Did not help me make research decisions.2% Did not help me choose a topic or decide what data analysis to use. 10Repetitive2%Some headings require repetitive information being put in. 33

34 Student Problems Preparing Research Methods Proposals / Projects Student problems can be categorized around the four stages of Kolbs Model and In some cases the Kolb/Gowin Model may help? So what problems have your students encountered in research modules associated with Concrete Experience? 34

35 Problems associated with Concrete Experience Not being able to select a topic. Asking if a certain topic is good. Asking if a Topic A is better/worse than Topic B. Failing to clearly specify their chosen event / object – I suggest using: What, Where, Who, When, How Many. 35

36 What problems have your students encountered in research modules associated with Reflective Observation? 36

37 Problems associated with Reflective Observation Not seeing that they need to develop a research topic that suits them (Sun & Lin, 2004, 155). Jumping into a project without sufficient reflection. Choosing an event that has not yet happened. Insufficiently focused research questions. Attempting to answer too many and/or unrelated research questions. Worrying they need to make a major contribution to knowledge. Being unrealistic in what they can do in the allotted time (Collis & Hussey, 2003). 37

38 What problems have your students encountered in research modules associated with Abstract Conceptualization? 38

39 Problems associated with Abstract Conceptualization Not recognizing that all research builds upon the work of others. Failing to identify an appropriate conceptual / theoretical framework (Collis & Hussey, 2003). Not identifying /using relevant literature (Collis & Hussey, 2003). Not defining key concepts. Poor citation / referencing. Not knowing how to summarize literature. Not knowing how to evaluate literature. Not recognizing that all research is value laden (Kuhn, 1962). 39

40 What problems have your students encountered in research modules associated with Active Experimentation? 40

41 Problems associated with Active Experimentation Suggesting inappropriate research methods to collect data (Collis & Hussey, 2003). Talking about possibly appropriate research methods but not saying how they are related to their specific topic. Not recognising there may be significant problems getting access to data. Recognising such access problems but failing to come up with plausible strategies to get access. Not understanding and seeing the relevance of various philosophical ideas to underpin their data collection. Not knowing what type of data to collect. Not knowing how much data to collect or suggesting unrealistic sample sizes. Presenting an unrealistic variety of data collection methods. Not identifying appropriate participants. 41

42 More Problems associated with Active Experimentation Not considering ethical and political issues. Being vague about, or suggesting incompatible, ways of analysing data. Thinking they need to prove causation. Not knowing how to report results. Poor layout of Tables & Figures. Not relating results to previous research studies. Poor interpretation and discussion of findings for stakeholders Poor recommendations. Over generalisation of results. Limitations of results not considered. Areas for future research not considered. 42

43 Other Student Problems related to Overall Structure Being unable to distinguish a research project from a critical thinking exercise or a Report. Not knowing the difference between a proposal and a project. Not understanding the fit between theory and research methods – internal validity. Not knowing how to structure their project. Not knowing what to include and exclude (Collis & Hussey, 2003). 43

44 Developments in Hand Diagnostic questionnaire to identify issues students may find problematic in preparing research projects/proposals, based on Kolbs Learning Styles Inventory. Can be used to help students prepare / understand reports. Can be adapted to help students prepare a critical thinking piece of work e.g. An extended essay. Based on Richard Pauls critical thinking components – replace active experiment components (i.e. Data collection, analysis, results and recommendations) with reasons, assertion and consequences components. Being used the structure for an e-learning MBA research methods module. 44

45 INTRODUCTION TO RESEARCH A LEARNING TASK 5 SLIDES WILL FOLLOW WHICH WILL BE SHOWN FOR 10 SECONDS. YOU CAN WRITE NOTHING DURING THE 10 SECONDS THEN YOU HAVE TO WRITE DOWN AS MANY ITEMS AS YOU CAN REMEMBER 45

46 INTRODUCTION TO THE VEE LEARNING TASK 1 How much of the following can you remember after 10 seconds exposure. 6 25 17 9 23 11 2 12 8 21 46

47 47

48 LEARNING TASK 2 How much of the following can you remember after 10 seconds exposure. M Q L G I R L X E T 48

49 49

50 LEARNING TASK 3 How much of the following can you remember after 10 seconds exposure. dog cat mouse rabbit fish house door animal pet turtle 50

51 51

52 LEARNING TASK 4 How much of the following can you remember after 10 seconds exposure. asset overdraft loan stock pension cash car building customer bank 52

53 53

54 LEARNING TASK 5 How much of the following can you remember after 10 seconds exposure. realisation amortisation accruals accretion postretirement normative oligopolistic securitization asymmetry temporal 54

55 55

56 RESEARCH METHODS Handouts: Kolbs ELT Model illustrating the Memory Exercise. 56

57 Introduction to Research Methods Lecture Notes 57

58 Introduction to Research Methods Objects/Events: Some selected part of the (Financial Reporting) world. For example = Financial statements, internet, auditors, investors, managers, accountants, standard setters, accounting standards, employees, governments, etc. Natural starting point of any investigation. Careful observation and full detailed description needed. 58

59 Introduction to Research Methods Purpose or contribution: Who will benefit from the research? Why was the research undertaken? 59

60 Introduction to Research Methods Focus Questions: Need to ask clear questions about chosen objects/events. Much reflection needed. Often asks WHY? 60

61 Introduction to Research Methods Worldview: What are the researchers beliefs? For example, positivist or interpretist, concern with inflation, the environment, unfairness in society? All research is value laiden. Paradigm (Kuhn) 61

62 Introduction to Research Methods Concepts: Identify concepts to help understand selected objects/events. Ideas / basic building blocks of knowledge. For example, profit, assets, accruals, capital, replacement cost, etc. This is how a subject expert thinks and see the world. Need to be Cited and Referenced 62

63 Introduction to Research Methods Constructs: The way concepts are linked to other concepts clarifies their meaning. For example, companies with profit based bonus schemes report higher profits. Need to be Cited and Referenced 63

64 Introduction to Research Methods Theories: Linked concepts to help us explain, predict or guide some part of the FR world. Can be tested against real world data. Real world too complex & messy; theory = simplification. Can measure extent of relationship (e.g. CAPM). Need to be Cited and Referenced Induction & Deduction 64

65 Introduction to Research Methods Assumptions: Upon which concepts / theory rests needed to be clearly stated. For example, choice of depreciation methods. 65

66 Introduction to Research Methods Data Collection: Data the researcher chooses to gather concerning your selected objects / events. Can be quantitative or qualitative. From whom? Questionnaire, Interview, Observation, Examining Documents. Survey experiments, case study. Ethical issues. 66

67 Introduction to Research Methods Analysis: To produce results. For qualitative data, such techniques as coding. For quantitative data tables, graphs or statistics might be relevant. The problem of Induction = Falsification (Popper). 67

68 Introduction to Research Methods Results: Called knowledge claims. For example, 50% of respondents chose straight-line depreciation. Are your results similar or different from those made by other researchers? 68

69 Introduction to Research Methods Recommendations & Implications: Often called Discussion or Recommendations Section. Who does the research benefit? For example standard setters, accountants, auditors, other researchers, etc. Weaknesses/limitations in the results. Ideas for future researchers. 69


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