Research Methods

to support students enrolled in RES701

Week 4 Blog Award

Well done to everyone who got their blogs sufficiently underway to considered for the first Blog Award.  There were a number of interesting ones and it was good to see people post about things we had done in class, answers to some difficult questions and thoughtful personal comments about technology.

Remember you are writing for yourself as much as for me and your audience.  This is the beginning of a research diary which should chart your thinking over the next few months.  Also remember that when you use words or images from another online resource that aren’t yours, you must acknowledge them in some way – usually by way of a link to the original. It is important to get into the habit of doing this right from the beginning and congratulations to those of you who did!

As I indicated last week, Alex has made a great start to his research diary with comments on class work, answers to questions I asked but most importantly by following up some of his own interests which are likely to be of great value in the future – I have to give the first Blog Award to Alex – well done.

Don’t forget to check out others’ blogs – there is some interesting reading there! Leave some helpful and encouraging comments if you want some in return 🙂

March 14, 2017 Posted by | Blog Award, News | Leave a comment

Difficult Concepts


For this week’s class I asked you to find out the meaning of, and think about these two terms:

  • Ontology
  • Epistemology

You could look them up in a dictionary or wikipedia and get the definition from there but I don’t think it will help you very much!  What I really wanted you to do is to try to find your own meaning for them as they relate to research  – this is often similar to the way the concepts are used in philosophy.  On your blogs I hoped to see your ideas of what you think these two terms refer to in the context of undertaking research through considering these questions.

  1. What is ontology? How is it relevant to research?
  2. What is espistemology? How is it relevant to research?
  3. What is the connection between ontology and epistemology in a research context?

These are hard questions I know !!  I didn’t expect you to find ‘perfect’ answers, I just wanted to start you thinking!  Exploring these questions and coming up with a framework that can guide much of our thinking for the rest of the course will be the focus of today’s class.

I will be posting the link to my notes here either during or after the class.

March 14, 2017 Posted by | Class Work, General, News | Leave a comment

Difficult questions

An important and fairly major part of this course is about establishing information that we can rely on and then understanding how we can contribute to other people’s knowledge by creating credible information of our own. Over the next few weeks we will be looking at these issues in some detail.  This week we begin that exploration by looking at one particular concept and teasing out a number of different and difficult questions that arise once we begin to explore it.  That concept is the notion of ‘truth’.

During the course of the session we will be looking at some difficult questions and interesting links (links below will be available in or after class) and attempting to find some satisfactory if not definitive answers – this will lead on to our discussions around the concepts of ontology and epistemology.  Prepare to have a pleasantly aching brain by the end of the class 🙂

The following links will be available either during or after the class :

==============

For next week  – I would like you to try to answer the following questions on your blog please:

  1. What is ontology? How is it relevant to research?
  2. What is epistemology? How is it relevant to research?
  3. What is the connection between ontology and epistemology in a research context?

March 8, 2017 Posted by | Class Work, General | Leave a comment

Welcome

Hello everyone!  Welcome to Semester 1  2017!

One of your first challenges will be to set up your own wordpress blog (or if you already have one you can create a category for RES701 and use that) and we will be doing that in the first class.  As soon as you have, please email me your url so that I can add it to the site here.  Then you will need to get that first post written!

If you have managed to avoid creating a blog up to now, there are links to instructions about  setting up a wordpress blog here  .

Once you have created your blog please do these things :

  1. Send an email to Clare giving me the URL of your blog so that I can add it to the class blog list.
  2. Make sure your blog has the link to this class blog.
  3. Write your first post  by answering these questions
  • What do you think ‘research’ is?
  • Do you think you will ever need research skills?
  • What do you think a research journal is and who is it written for?
  • What is plagiarism?
  • Why is it important to avoid it?

Answer these questions on your blog as soon as you can to get your blog underway.  You can make it one blog posting or separate ones, either is fine.  I usually find that if my posting gets too long it is better to separate them into individual ones. Please give a little detail in the answer to each question.

To give you an idea of some of the work that students did in previous years I have left the links to their blogs in the sidebar – you are welcome to have a look at them for guidance.

If you want to see what other students are writing you can check out their blogs too – look for the links in the sidebar and leave comments on them if you want to.  It is useful to put the links of other students blogs in your sidebar too.

Please remember to check out the NMIT Online site too – I have put the course outline there and also the assignments – we will be looking at these briefly in our first class.

CLASS NOTES

TALOS

February 27, 2017 Posted by | General | Leave a comment

Longitudinal Study from Dunedin

I mentioned the longitudinal study from Dunedin following 1000 babies born 45 years ago.  Here is a very recent article about the study from the NZ Listener – fascinating read!

August 11, 2016 Posted by | General, News | Leave a comment

Welcome!

Hello everyone!  Welcome to Semester 2  2016!

One of your first challenges will be to set up your own wordpress blog (or if you already have one you can create a category for RES701 and use that) and we will be doing that in the first class.  As soon as you have, please email me your url so that I can add it to the site here.  Then you will need to get that first post written!

If you have managed to avoid creating a blog up to now, there are links to instructions about  setting up a wordpress blog here  .

Once you have created your blog please do these things :

  1. Send an email to Clare giving me the URL of your blog so that I can add it to the class blog list.
  2. Make sure your blog has the link to this class blog.
  3. Write your first post  by answering these questions
  • What do you think ‘research’ is?
  • Do you think you will ever need research skills?
  • What do you think a research journal is and who is it written for?
  • What is plagiarism?
  • Why is it important to avoid it?

Answer these questions on your blog as soon as you can to get your blog underway.  You can make it one blog posting or separate ones, either is fine.  I usually find that if my posting gets too long it is better to separate them into individual ones. Please give a little detail in the answer to each question.

To give you an idea of some of the work that students did in previous years I have left the links to their blogs in the sidebar – you are welcome to have a look at them for guidance.

If you want to see what other students are writing you can check out their blogs too – look for the links in the sidebar and leave comments on them if you want to.  It is useful to put the links of other students blogs in your sidebar too.

Please remember to check out the NMIT Online site too – I have put the course outline there and also the assignments – we will be looking at these briefly in our first class.

A link to the notes from our first class will be available here .

July 18, 2016 Posted by | Class Work, General, News | Leave a comment

The dangers of research

I was telling you about the need to protect yourselves as a researcher as well as protecting your participants.  Here is a great example of the dangers of being a researcher rigorously investigating a company that may not be a willing participant!

The education bridge to nowhere

June 9, 2016 Posted by | General, News | Leave a comment

Project Alpha Centauri

Just in case you are interested in what interrupted the class!

Project Alpha Centauri – announced today I think.  Some of you might get to see the result (projected for 45 years from now!) but I don’t think I will somehow. 🙂

April 13, 2016 Posted by | General | Leave a comment

Intellectual Property

Today is our last class and today I want to touch briefly on Intellectual Property and Copyright as they might apply to your project as you need to consider this in the proposal you create.

For most of you, copyright will not be an issue, but it is useful to have an understanding of why we ask you to include a statement about it in your proposal and to know where to go for further information.   Last year, Tetsuya posted on the implications for software development in his blog  and included a useful link too.  If you are going to be writing code in your project – check it out!

if you are wanting to know more you might want to check out the following links:

What is IP in NZ? 

What does IP have to do with me 

What is Copyright in NZ? 

What is Copyleft?

Creative Commons in NZ 

GNU GPL

Most of the class today though is for you to work on your proposal assignment while I am there to answer any questions or to offer advice on what you are doing.  From past experience I know that the area that is most difficult for many of you are deciding on the activities and therefore on the project plan.  I may talk about this too if you would like to know more.

November 12, 2013 Posted by | Class Work | Leave a comment

Entrepreneurial Learning

In class today I was talking a little about this topic as being something that I am currently researching.  As part of that we watched this video – and I would be interested in your thoughts about it.  It was interesting to hear the comments about motivation and I am sure there are other things.

I also read you a bit from the paper which I am currently writing on this topic – here it is (in an unfinished state of course!)

It isn’t just about learning by doing or learning how entrepreneurs learn or work, it is about learning by taking risk, learning by failing and learning by gradually achieving a growing mastery over a set of skills.  It is also learning to act with confidence and optimism and learning to ignore the negative voice whispering in your ear.

If we wish to really change the paradigm we HAVE to change the way we assess success.  Success is no longer about the perfect outcome, it is about trying, maybe failing, and the ability to reflect on the failure and use it to try again with increased success.

If you are interested in other things I have written along these lines have a look at my blog 🙂

May 16, 2013 Posted by | General | 1 Comment