Methodology tutorial

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This is a "crash course" on Research Design and Research Methodology for educational technologists and related fields. The target population are students with a very weak background in research methodology. More experienced students might find one or two modules to be useful.

Global aim
These tutorial modules should help students write a draft project for a master thesis.
Learning goals
  1. Know about some fundamental principles of an academic research and projects.
  2. Be familiar with three major classes of research designs: (1) Theory-testing approaches, (2) Qualitative and new theory-creating research, (3) Design-science research.
  3. Be aware of the fundamental elements of a Research Design: (1) Definition of a subject, (2) Research Goals and Questions, (3) Short Literature Review and selection of theoretical and conceptual frameworks, (4) Approach and Methodology: Operational Research Questions, Analysis frameworks and methodological techniques.
  4. Master basics of a few selected research methodologies, e.g. data gathering, sampling, and simple quantitative and qualitative data analysis.
  5. Learn some practical skills like finding a research subject or planning
  6. Learn about various structures for a thesis paper.

In other words, we shall both introduce some high level/abstract concepts about academic research and "down-to-earth" techniques like fundamentals of data analysis.

Target population
  • Master Students in Educational Technology from various backgrounds and in particular students that have a weak background in research methodology.
  • The tutorial modules also can be used for most other social science disciplines (the original slides were made for students in public policy management). Social science research and applied ICT methodologies are quite the same across disciplines. Only preferences for given approaches and techniques are different.

The tutorials

Tutorials should be read roughly in this order, but you should be aware most of these need to be improved - Daniel K. Schneider 13:25, 7 October 2008 (UTC).

Some tutorials still need a lot of extra work, but currently I don't have time for this - Daniel K. Schneider 12:13, 12 July 2009 (UTC)

  1. Introductions
    1. Methodology tutorial - introduction
    2. Methodology tutorial - empirical research principles
  2. Putting together a research plan
    1. Methodology tutorial - finding a research subject
    2. Methodology tutorial - the research plan
    3. Methodology tutorial - planning techniques
  3. Research frameworks and designs
    1. Methodology tutorial - conceptual frameworks
    2. Methodology tutorial - theory-driven research designs
    3. Methodology tutorial - theory-finding research designs
    4. Methodology tutorial - design-oriented research designs
  4. Data acquisition methods
    1. Methodology tutorial - quantitative data acquisition methods
    2. Methodology tutorial - qualitative data acquisition methods
  5. Data analysis
    1. Methodology tutorial - descriptive statistics and scales
    2. Methodology tutorial - quantitative data analysis
    3. Methodology tutorial - exploratory data analysis
    4. Methodology tutorial - qualitative data analysis
  6. Writing
    1. Methodology tutorial - structure of a master thesis
Missing - specialized tutorials, e.g.
  1. experimental research
  2. software development methodology
  3. design-based research
  4. quasi-experimental evaluation studies
  5. introductory multivariate statistics
  6. simulation and modeling
  7. ....
Teacher materials
  • Slides (several PDF). Save the files and open with Acroread, then hit Ctrl-L for full screen projection. These slides were made for a single event in Mauritius and it is unlikely that I will improve them some day. Some also got French inside (Mauritius is bilingual). There are no PowerPoints since I do teaching slides with a word processor (FrameMaker). It's faster that way. - Daniel K. Schneider.
  • Slides in french - PDF - Made for public policy analysis and management students, but suitable for most multi-paradigm social science disciplines.
Other wiki articles
Motivation for these tutorials
  • I signed a contract to develop a little course for a distance teaching university in Dubai and I outlined these modules here, before I wrote the whole thing with a word processor. - Daniel K. Schneider
  • Also, our own students can profit.

Links and books

See: Research methodology resources for several kinds of on-line resources

  • Randolph, Justus J. (2007). Multidisciplinary Methods in Educational Technology Research and Development, HAMK Press, HTML / PDF. This is a free E-Book. - I discovered this 17:42, 18 October 2008 (UTC) - Not read yet - but looks good.