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Appraising enquiry and research techniques

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Introduction The purpose of this assignment is to produce a detailed Research Enquiry Plan and a rationale that will indicate a focused area of inquiry. The research paradigms and methodologies and data collection methods will be discussed and a clear justification of which ones will be used for this research project will be given. A brief overview of the participants will be included. A timescale for the proposed research enquiry and deadlines will be provided. This will enable the writer to focus the research and have precise deadlines to stick to. Consideration to the ethical and legal issues for the research project will be discussed. A personal action plan will also be provided to show what skills the writer needs to carry out the research enquiry and how she will gain these skills. Rationale for the selection of the focused area of enquiry and what is the question to be addressed? Before the writer decided on the focused area that is going to researched several areas of interest were looked at. One area that was looked at was 'do children transfer the skills taught to them in small groups such as the Early Literacy Support Programme into their work within the classroom?' Another area was 'does being active at playtime improve children's behaviour?' and the final area was 'does using rewards, positive reinforcement reduce the incidents of challenging behaviour within the early years setting? Do children transfer the skills taught to them in small groups such as the Early Literacy Support Programme into their work within the classroom and does being active at playtimes improve children's behaviour were both considered and discarded for several reasons. One reason this particular research question was discarded was that the writer felt the timescale for the research would not be adequate enough to see significant results and as a result of this the validity of the research would be weak. ...read more.


Grounded theory is concerned with 'the discovery of theory from data' (Glaser and Strauss, 1967, cited in Walliman, 2004). Grounded theory usually starts with a research question and not a hypothesis. It generates theory from the data and because of this the theory is grounded in data (Punch, 1998, cited in Bell, J. 2005). Research should not be done by trying to find a particular answer to a question. The answer develops as the data is reflected on and reviewed. Grounded theory can be complex and time consuming so its uses to this research study are less than they would be to a major research project. The final approach to research is narrative inquiry and stories and is used with the interpretivist paradigm. Narrative inquiry and stories involves the collection and development of stories. Narrative inquiry can involve reflective autobiography, life story, or the inclusion of excerpts from participants' stories to illustrate a theme developed by the researcher. These are useful to the researcher who wants to portray intensely personal accounts of human experience (Gray, 1998, cited in Bell, J. 2005). Gray goes on to suggest that narrative inquiry and stories provide the researcher with measurable, valid data but this can be time consuming and difficult for researchers new to this approach. It requires the researcher to allow the storyteller to structure the conversation, with the researcher asking follow-up questions. Questionnaires, interviews, experiments and observations are data collection methods. These data collection methods are used to gather evidence for various methodologies. These will now be discussed briefly and state which methodology they link to. The first data collection method is Questionnaires. Questionnaires are a way of asking participants questions without actually talking to them. The questions are fixed, they do not change. The questions can be written for a specific purpose. Participants can complete questionnaires anonymously. Questionnaires can include closed questions or open questions. ...read more.


Improve research skills. Time management. Writing up notes. Keep everything together in one place instead of being scattered around the house. Spread work time for assignments equally so that one is not taking up more time than the other and all will be quality pieces of work. When writing assignments I am not always being critical and analytical. To use guidance and advice from lecturers and books. Use the library and resources around more effectively. Seeking help and guidance where necessary. Remove distractions e.g. telephone, T.V. not putting assignments off by doing something else. Do this as soon as possible after the observation takes place and not leave them for weeks then not be able to remember what you meant by your shortened notes. On going On going On going 13/03/06 - on going on going 03/04/06 - on going Reference List Books Bell, J., (2005), 4th Edition, Doing Your Research Project, A guide for first-time researchers in education, health and social science, Berkshire, Open University Press. Best, J.W. and Kahn, J.V., (1989), 6th Ed, Research In Education, New Jersey, Prentice Hall. Cohen, L., Manion, L. and Morrison, K., (2003), 5th Edition, Research Methods in Education, London, Routledge Falmer. Collins, (2001), Concise Dictionary & Thesaurus, Glasgow, Harper Collins Publishers. Cottrell, S., (2003), 2nd Edition, The Study Skills Handbook, New York, Pelgrave Macmillan. Gillham, B., (2000), The Research Interview, London, Continuum. Hittleman, D.R., and Simon, A.J., (1992), Interpreting Educational Research, An Introduction for Consumers of Research, New York, Macmillan Publishing Company. Howard, K. and Sharpe, J.A., (1983), The Management of a Student Research Project, Aldershot, Gower. Macintyre, C., (2000), The Art of Action Research, London, David Fulton Publishers Ltd. MacLeod-Brundenell, I., (2004), Advanced Early Years Care and Education, for levels 4 and 5, Oxford, Heinemann Educational Publishers. Opie, C., (2004), Doing Educational Research, London, SAGE Publications Ltd. Verma, G.K. and Mallick, K., (1999), Researching Education Perspectives and Techniques, London, Falmer Press. Walliman, N., (2004), 2nd Ed, Your Research Project, A step by step guide for first time researchers, London, SAGE Publications. Websites http://www.infed.org/research/b-actres.htm. Accessed 30/04/2006. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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