Analytical methods for Information Systems Professionals Week 13 Lecture 1 CONCLUSION.
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Analytical methods for Information Systems Professionals Week 13 Lecture 1 CONCLUSION
Please fill in your surveys www.ug.cs.usyd.edu.au/surveys.html THEY ARE AVAILABLE UNTIL THE END OF THIS WEEK
Summary of mid-course survey 45 returned questionnaires Nearly unanimous comment that assignments are too much work for only 5% of course marks Most appreciate the message board and announcements 80% enjoy/find the tutorials interesting/helpful Majority like the guest lecturers (60%) Average overall score for “How well is the course going for you” 7.5. The textbook was widely held to be clear and easy to understand 2 respondents would like a higher level of content
Joys included:interesting course, the variety of lecturers, learning about action research, critical thinking, learning useful skills, survey techniques Frustrations included: too many IS assignments overlapping, the variety of lecture formats, Most valuable learnings included: research skills, working in groups, refining searches, time management, improving reading skills, critical analysis, the learning in tutorials, communication, guest lecturers. Suggestions included improving the web-site and the availability of lecture notes and tutorial worksheets,
TODAY What were the objectives of the course? What can you expect in the exam? Clarifying some significant issues –Research approach –Refining the question Questions? What to do in the next 3.5 weeks other than panicking.
What is the question? Who wants to know? What is your answer? How do you know if it is right?
Use analytical methods to: Formulate a question precisely Have dependable techniques to gather and analyse data to answer questions Collect and analyse feedback
Needs analysis Evaluation of technology Design Feasibility Measurement of performance and alignment (auditing) Changing
Information Systems (IS) professionals in today's organisations are leaders in change and development. Your success in this field will be aided by your being able to apply formal methods of information collection and analysis to interpreting evidence on IS issues.
By the end of this course you should be able to: understand the purpose, relevance and effectiveness of using analytical methods in IS, identify and articulate the research problem and its context, find, understand, analyse and evaluate literature related to the research question,
write a research proposal, collect data using both qualitative and quantitative investigative methods, analyse and interpret that evidence, present and communicate your results verbally and in writing.
Lectures The Research Process Defining the problem Quantitative analytical methods Finding and reading the literature What is data?
Qualitative analytical methods Planning and designing research Revision Presenting findings Applying research to business
The exam is worth 50% of your final mark and you must pass the exam to pass the course.
WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT IN THE EXAM? (that I can reasonably tell you about)
SECTION A 30 marks Scenario Followed by 4 questions with sub-questions which allow you to apply your understanding of the how you would select, justify and apply (in detail) specific qualitative analytical methods to the problem. The questions will always indicate the number of points you need to make to obtain the marks specified.
SECTION B 30 marks Scenario Followed by 10 questions which allow you to apply your understanding of the research process to solving the problem. The emphasis in this scenario is more on quantitative methods.
WHAT WILL NOT BE IN THE EXAM You will not be examined on finding or reading the literature. That has already been assessed through your assignments You will not be examined on the content of the guest lectures who presented case studies, Gartner and David Nathan.
Generalisations Theories Hypotheses Observations The Research Process
Four elements of research Epistemology Theoretical perspective Methodology Methods What do we recognise as knowledge How do we know what we know? What is “true” Objectivist = meaning and reality exist apart from anybody being conscious of them Constructivist = meaning derives from our interaction with the world Subjectivist = meaning is imposed on an object by the subject Positivist Interpretive Critical Plan of action, research design and why The philosphical stance that underlies our chosen methodology – our assumptions Techniques Surveys Interviews observation
Four Elements of the Research Process What methods do we propose to use? What methodology governs our choice and use of methods? What theoretical perspective lies behind the methodology in question? What epistemology informs this theoretical perspective?
Methods Research methods are the techniques or procedures we plan to use in our research Research methods are used to gather and analyse data When talking about research methods we talk at a very detailed level The choice of methods is central to the progress and success of our research project and depend on: –Purpose of the research –Location of the research –Position of the researcher –Cost ($, time etc.)
Methodology The research methodology describes our strategy or plan of action This is the research design – shaping our choice of methods and linking that choice to the research outcomes Gives a rationale for our choice of methods and the way we employ those methods
Theoretical Perspective The assumptions we bring to our chosen methodology. The philosophical stance that we are taking in our research By articulating our theoretical perspective we present our view of the human world and ground our assumptions i.e. our way of looking at the world and making sense of it. Examples: –Positivist –Critical –Interpretivist
Our theoretical perspective (way of looking at the world) involves knowledge and embodies a particular understanding of “how we know what we know”. –“Epistemology is concerned with providing a philosophical grounding for deciding what kinds of knowledge are possible and how we can ensure that they are both adequate and legitimate” (Maynard 1994, p10) e.g. –Objectivism –Constructionism (the epistemological stance of many qualitative researchers)
The four elements inform one another Epistemology Theoretical perspective Methodology Methods
What to do in the next 3.5 weeks instead of panicking Print out the course schedule and stick it on your wall. It is the roadmap for what you need to understand. Revise using the lecture notes, the textbook and the lecture handouts including the McCrotty article, the list of types of research and the table of research approaches. Revising the other articles will also extend your repetoire. Use the message board to discuss issues with each other and to ask me questions. I will monitor it all through the study period right up until the exam. Study with a friend or a group.