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Doing Educational

Research
Hatesh Kumar, S. Faiza Hassan, Samreen Riaz
MSAL, NED UET

Doing Educational Research


A Guide for First Time Researchers
Edited By: Clive Opie

Book Review Presented By

Mr. Hatesh Kumar


Ms. Samreen Riaz
Ms. Faiza Hassan

What is
Educational
Research

Research
Procedures

Presenting
Data

Methodology,
Procedures And
Ethical Concerns

Research
Approaches

Using
NUD.IST

Writing
Research

Reliability,
Validity And
Credibility

Using
Atlas.t
i

Chapters covered

What is
Educational
Research

Methodology,
Procedures
And Ethical
Concerns

Writing
Research

What is Educational
Research?
Hatesh Kumar

Chapter :1
What is Educational Research?
Clive Opie
What is Educational Research?

Can I do educational Research?

Research is.
Seeking through methodological processes to add ones body of
knowledge and, hopefully, to that of others, by the discovery of
non-trivial facts and insights. (Howard & Sharpes, 1983)

A search or investigation directed to the discovery of some fact


by careful consideration or study of a subject; a course of
critical or scientific inquiry. (OED, 2001)

Educational Research
The collection and analysis of information on the world of education so
as to understand and explain it better, with a significant practicing
teachers in that it should be
viewed as critical, reflexive, and professionally oriented activity
regarded as crucial ingredient in the teachers professional
role.generating self knowledge and personal development in such a
way that practice can be improved.(Hitchcock and Hughes, 1989)

Myths surrounding Educational Research


Research requires
The collection of quite large amount of data
Results which can be generalized
A hypothesis
The undertaking of experiments
Objectivity rather than subjectivity
The use of statistics

That something is proved


Specific expertise, as it is difficult

Can I do educational Research?


Practicality

Hard work
Time consuming

Problematic
Difficult

Requires expertise

Educational Research
Educational Research is doable, albeit at
different levels of depth and
sophistication, by all interested in making
a systematic, critical and self-critical
enquiry which aims to contribute to the
advancement of knowledge (Bassey,
1990) of the world around them.

Methodology,
Procedures and
Ethical Concerns

Chapter :2

Methodology, Procedures and Ethical Concerns

Pat Sikes

Working Definitions
Selecting Methodologies and Procedures

Researcher Positionality
Ethical issues and questions

Methodologies
Methodology refers to the theory of getting knowledge, to the considerations
of the best ways, methods, or procedures, by which data that will provide the
evidence basis for the construction of knowledge about whatever it is that is
being researched, is obtained.
Methodology is concerned with the description and analysis of research
methods rather than with the actual, practical use of those methods.
Methodological work is philosophical , thinking, work.
Methodology is the overall approach to a particular research project, to the
overarching strategy that is adopted.

Procedures/ Methods
Specific research techniques that are used to collect and analyze data.

Methodology

Procedures/ Methods

A Case Study

Interviews, questionnaire,
observation and
documentary analysis

Action Research project

Tests, questionnaires, and


interviews ,
To collect information in
order to evaluate the
interventions that was its

Selecting Methodologies and Procedures


Researchers have to be able to justify and argue a methodological case for
their reasons for choosing a particular approach and specific procedures.

Methodology and procedures determine the nature of the findings of the


research.
Decisions, about which methodology and procedures will be used,
influenced by
What can actually be done; What is practical and feasible; by situational
factors of various kinds; and by personal predilection and interests.

Think about the implications for research design


The physical, social, political and historical contexts in which their
research project will be located.
The reasons why they are doing the research.
How they conceptualize the situation they are researching.
The sorts of questions that they are seeking answers for.
The type of information that their questions will produce.

The scale of the research and the financial, personnel and other
resources available to conduct it.

Continue
The nature of the research population and the ability of
informants to provide particular types of response.
Ethical and moral issues relevant at various stages of the
research process.

If applicable, what are the requirements and expectations of


any organization or body that is commissioning and/or
funding the research?
When, and over what timescale the research will be done.

Researcher Positionality
The most significant factor that influences choice and use of
methodology and procedures is where the researcher is coming
from in terms of their philosophical position and their
fundamental assumptions concerning:
Social reality: their ontological assumptions;
The nature of knowledge: their epistemological assumptions;
Human nature and agency: specifically their assumptions about
the way in which human beings relate to and interact with their
environment.

Assumptions
Assumptions are colored by values and beliefs that are
based in political allegiance, religious faith, and
experiences that are consequent upon social class,
ethnicity, gender, sexuality, historical and geographical
location and so on.
Paradigm: A basic set of beliefs that guides action.
Education Research: Two main paradigms
Qualitative and Quantitative

Research Paradigms
Do you view the nature of knowledge as

Softer, subjective, based on experience


and insight of an essentially personal
nature

Hard, real, capable of being


transmitted in tangible form
OR

Empiricists view of knowledge


i.e. No knowledge exists that which is objectively,
immediately observable. You are classed as a
positivist, objectivist.

Rationalists view of knowledge


i.e. knowledge is perceived as created in the mind
of the individual. You are classed as an antipositivist, interpretevist, subjectivist.

You are likely to employ quantitative procedures


such as surveys & undertake large studies searching
for generalisable results.

You are likely to employ qualitative procedures,


which focus on individuals or small groups, more
concerned with understanding personal constructs
and relatability.

Ontological assumptions concerning the nature


of social reality
Ontological assumptions focus on whether a person sees social reality- or
aspects of the social world- as external, independent, given and objectively real,
or, instead, as socially constructed, subjectively experienced and the result of
human thought as expressed through language.
How they view the social world has the implications for the sorts of
methodologies and procedures they are likely to consider to be valid means of
collecting valid data, that can be used to make a valid interpretation, thus
creating valid knowledge.
If a social constructivist position is taken it will be necessary to collect
subjective accounts and perceptions that explain how the world is experienced
and constructed by the people who live in it.

Epistemological assumptions concerning


the bases for knowledge
Epistemology is the theory of knowledge.
Griffiths suggests that, epistemology, and particularly the relationship between
methodology and procedures and knowledge and truth, is a contentious and
controversial area for researchers and consumers of research.
Emphasis on accounts given by informants- either verbally in interviews or written in
the questionnaire.

Issue of how words can actually reflect reality and experience is complex and
problematic.
Researchers state their position explicitly tentative and cautious in presenting
conclusion.

Assumptions concerning human nature and agency


Concerned with the ways in which human beings are seen to act within the world.
Actions .innate instinctual forces or external conditions and forces.

Whatever you view inevitably applies to you and research population.


It is a complex area that highlights the issues of social power and agency as well as
raising questions about natural behaviors.
If people are believed to behave in a predetermined or reactive way, then
observation and experiment will be appropriate techniques.
If they are felt to make decisions about what to do then procedure will seek
explanation and understanding from their perspective will be needed.

Ethical issues and questions


Research Design
Access
Procedure of Data Collection
Research relationships
Interpretation and analysis

Writing up
Data dissemination
Avoiding harm/Doing wrong

Research Design
What exactly do you want to know and why do you want to know it?
Can you justify your interest?
If you are intending to do anything that is in any way experimental
what are the implication for the people who will be involved? If you are
using a control group will people assigned to it miss out any thing that
you suspect will be beneficial? Can it be justified?

Research Design
Insofar as you are able, have you thought about potential unintended or
unexpected consequences either to the people directly involved in the
research or as a result what you might find out?
If you are intended to do covert research of some kind, can you justify it?
How do you regard the people you are going to be researching?

Access

How are you going to access your research population? If


you choose to do your research with people who dont
posses much social power (e.g. children, captive
populations, your own students) can you justify why? And
are you exploiting their weakness?

Procedure of Data Collection


Are you asking people things you
wouldnt want to be asked?
Are you asking people to do things you
wouldnt want to be asked to do?

Research relationships
You have a basic moral responsibility towards the people you
are working with. Are you sure that you are doing as you would
be done by?
Could you be accused by rape research?

Are you manipulating people and relationships in order to get


good data?
Are you sensitive to the implications of any differences in terms
of social power between researcher and researched.

Interpretation and analysis


Do you acknowledge any theoretical
frameworks or value systems that may
influence your interpretations and analysis?

Writing up
Do you own your research in your writing up.

Do you make the research process appear to


be neat and unproblematic?
Are informants sufficiently protected in
written accounts?

Data dissemination
Are my informants sufficiently
protected when it comes to data
dissemination?

Avoiding harm/Doing wrong


The aim is not to harm anyone or do any
moral wrong. This isnt simple because one
can never know what the unintended
outcomes will be?
Do the ends ultimately justify the means?

Writing Research

Chapter : 3
Writing Research
David Hyatt
Expected requirements for student academic writing

A consideration of academic writing conventions


Audience in academic writing

Feedback
Structuring your research-based assignment

Some advice Ive been given (or wish Id been given!)


Conclusion

Expected requirements for student academic


writing
Using a range of sourcing
Criticality
Evidence
Make your own point
Presentation
Plagiarism

If you must write a prose or poems


The words you choose should be your own
Dont plagiarize or take on loan
Theres always someone, somewhere
With a big nose, who knows
Wholl trip you up and laugh when you fall.
1980s song (Morrissey and Marr, 1986)

A consideration of academic writing


conventions
Specific points to considerwhen to us I ,
We, You etc
Avoid Direct Claims

Use Tentative, Distancing attitudinal modality


Use of nominalization as opposed to verbalization

Other problems
Avoid overgeneralizations
Avoid unsubstantiated claims
Be careful with rhetorical questions

Be specific
Use subject specific lexis

Avoid dramatic/loaded language


Dont over claim/under claim
Avoid sexist or gender stereotyping language

Audience in academic writing


The duality of the audience

The message is being directed at two discrete


audiences.
For experts related to the field
For lay-person

FeedbackTutors comment
Phatic

Comment , encouragement

Developmental

Alternatives, future, reflective, informational

Structural

Discourse, sentence, stylistic level


Positive and negative evaluation, non-evaluative
summary

Content
Methodological

Approach, methods, process and administration

Structuring your research-based assignment


Abstract

Introduction
Literature Review
Methodology

Results and Analysis


Conclusion
Limitation
Implications and Recommendation

Some advice Ive been given (or wish Id been


given!)
Time management

Space management
Referencing as you go

Proofreading
The value of critical friend

Conclusion
Good academic writing is clear, concise, critical, credible,
evidenced, well structured and well presented.
Remember to enjoy your writing.
Goethe claimed that The most original authors are not so
because they advance what is new, but because they put
what they have to say as if it had never been said before.

Samreen Riaz
Chapters covered

Reliability,
Validity And
Credibility

Research
Approaches

Research
Procedures

Reliability, Validity And


Credibility
Jon Scaife

WHAT IS RESEARCH?

The systematic, rigorous investigation of a


situation or problem in order to generate new
knowledge or validate existing knowledge.

McMillan and Schumacher (1989) define research as


a systematic process for collecting and analyzing
information (data) for some purpose.

Kerlinger defines scientific research as systematic,


controlled, empirical and critical investigation of
natural phenomena guided by theory and hypotheses
about the presumed relations among such phenomena.

It has been argued that the results of educational research will lead to
the improvement of educational practice; therefore, professional
practitioners should maintain a continued interest in research.

The results of educational research are reported in a way that requires a


knowledgeable person to read and implement them.

Although educational research is complex and


demanding, the broad spectrum of research activities
ranges from the simple, single operations to complex
combinations of qualitative and quantitative
procedures.

Educational research is systematic and within a broad framework


follows the steps of the scientific method. However, across different
types of studies, there is extensive flexibility in how the steps are
implemented.

To make research systematic, researchers use the approach of


scientific inquiry and scientific method.
Scientific Inquiry: search for knowledge through recognized
methods of data collection, analysis and interpretation.
Scientific Method: research process is considered to consist of a
series of sequential steps.

Scientific Method:
1) Identifying a problem
The nature of the problem is to be defined; related knowledge is
identified and a framework to conduct the research is established. In
addition, necessary assumptions and conditions are also identified.
2) Review information
The researcher reviews how others approached a similar problem; i.e.
Literature review.

3) Data collection:
Collecting data requires a proper organization and control to validate the data to
make decisions upon them
4) Data analysis:
Data analysis must be done in a manner appropriate to the problem.
5) Drawing conclusions
Following data analysis, researchers draw conclusions and make generalizations
based on the data they had collected.

The Validity of Educational Research:


Researches must be based on facts; i.e. capable to be justified. There are
two concepts: internal validity and external validity.
Internal Validity: it is the extent to which the results of a research can
be interpreted accurately and with confidence.

External Validity: the extent to which research results can be


generalized.
Internal validity is a prerequisite for external validity because if the
results cannot be interpreted accurately with confidence, researchers
cannot generalize them.

Generalizability does not mean that the study must be


generalized to many various situations and populations;
external validity, rather, depends upon the conditions and
purposes of the specific research study.
It is impossible to reach perfect internal and external
validity; researchers must work to reach a balance so that
results can be interpreted with confidence and still have
some useful generalizability.

The Reliability of Educational Research:


Reliability refers to the consistency of the research and the extent to which studies can
be replicated.

1. Internal reliability refers to the extent that data collection, analysis, and
interpretation are consistent under the same conditions.
- If internal reliability is lacking, the data becomes a function of who collected them
rather than what actually happened.
2. External reliability deals with the issue of whether or not independent researchers
can replicate studies in the same or similar settings with consistent results.

Reliability is a necessary characteristic for validity; a study cannot


be valid unless it is reliable. If it is unreliable, results cannot be
interpreted with confidence and cannot be generalized.
Reliability + validity = credibility of research

Research
Approaches

Correlational research refers to the systematic


investigation or statistical study of relationships among
two or more variables, without necessarily determining
cause and effect.
Descriptive research refers to research that provides
an accurate portrayal of characteristics of a particular
individual, situation, or group. Descriptive research, also
known as statistical research. These studies are a
means of discovering new meaning, describing what
exists, determining the frequency with which something
occurs, and categorizing information.

Ethnographic research refer to the investigation of a culture


through an in-depth study of the members of the culture; it
involves the systematic collection, description, and analysis of
data for development of theories of cultural behaviour.
It studies people, ethnic groups and other ethnic formations,
their ethno genesis, composition, resettlement, social welfare
characteristics, as well as their material and spiritual culture.
Experimental research is an objective, systematic, controlled
investigation for the purpose of predicting and controlling
phenomena and examining probability and causality among
selected variables.

Exploratory research is a type of research conducted for a problem that


has not been clearly defined. Exploratory research helps determine the
best research design, data collection method and selection of subjects
Grounded theory research is a research approach designed to discover
what problems exist in a given social environment and how the persons
involved handle them; it involves formulation, testing, and reformulation of
propositions until a theory is developed.
Historical research is research involving analysis of events that occurred
in the remote or recent past
Phenomenological research an inductive, descriptive research approach
developed from phenomenological philosophy; its aim is to describe an
experience as it is actually lived by the person

TYPES
QUANTITATIVE
RESEARCH
DESIGN

QUALITATIVE
RESEARCH
DESIGN

General Methodology: Qualitative and Quantitative Research

Krathwohl defined them as (1993), Qualitative


research: research that describes phenomena in words
instead of numbers or measures Quantitative
research: research that describes phenomena in numbers
and measures instead of words (P. 740)

In terms of conducting research, the difference between


them is not a dichotomy but a qualitative-quantitative
continuum.

Qualitative research is research dealing with


phenomena that are difficult or impossible to quantify
mathematically, such as beliefs, meanings, attributes, and
symbols

Qualitative researchers aim to gather an in-depth


understanding of human behaviour and the reasons that
govern such behaviour. The qualitative method
investigates the why and how of decision making, not jus
what, where, when.

Quantitative research refers to the systematic empirical investigation of any


phenomena via statistical, mathematical or computational techniques. The objective of
quantitative research is to develop and employ mathematical
models, theories and/or hypotheses pertaining to phenomena
Quantitative research is generally made using scientific methods, which can include:
The generation of models, theories and hypotheses
The development of instruments and methods for measurement

Experimental control and manipulation of variables


Collection of empirical data
Modelling and analysis of data
Evaluation of results

From a practical point of view, qualitative and quantitative procedures


are often mixed; however, their methodologies can be placed on the
continuum not on dichotomyas they tend towards the qualitative or
quantitative.

Classification of Educational Research


Two systems are described: one based on the goal of the research, and
another on the way in which the research is conducted.

Applied Research

Basic Research

Purpose: solve an immediate,


practical problem;

Purpose: adding to the existing


body of knowledge in a discipline;

It may contribute to the general


knowledge of some field as it
produces a solution for a specific
problem. (supplemental purpose).

Although not ruled out, basic


research does not necessarily
provide results of immediate
practical use (supplemental
purpose).

Basic and applied research are important; they should not be differentiated by
hierarchy of value judgments; instead, the purpose of research is the criterion.

An example of Basic Research:


- An experiment on learning in a laboratory setting. The purpose of the experiment
is to contribute to the knowledge about how learning takes place.

An example of Applied Research:

- A curriculum committee is surveying elementary school teachers about materials


of reading programs. The results of the survey would provide the necessary
information for deciding which program to adopt.

Basic research and Applied research are differentiated


by their purpose. The primary purpose of basic
research is the extension of knowledge; the purpose of
applied research is the solution of an immediate,
practical problem.

Action
Research
Action
research is one type of applied research. It is conducted by a professional
educator to aid in making decisions in local schools.
Since it is local, there is concern upon generalizing its results to other educational
settings. Teachers are curious about their own practices rather than generalizing
the outcomes.
Action research is less rigorous in terms of methodology and design than other
educational research.
Action research + research literature = viable approach to making educational
decisions at local level.

Research
Procedures

Research Procedures

The research design is the master plan specifying


the methods & procedures for collecting &
analyzing the needed information in a research
study.
Research design is a plan of how & where data are
to be collected & analyzed.

Research design can be defined as a blue print to


conduct a research study, which involves the
description of research approach, study setting,
sampling size, sampling technique, tool &
methods of data collection & analysis to answer
specific research questions or for testing
research hypothesis

ELEMENTS OF RESEARCH DESIGN


Qualitative
APPROACH

Quantitative

With
/without
conceptua
l
framewor
k

Both

METHOD OF ANALYSIS

TOOL & METHODS

ELEMENTS

POPULATION, SAMPLE &


SAMPLING TECHNIC

TIME & METHOD OF


DATA COLLECTION

1. Nature of the research problem.


2. Purpose of the study.
3. Researchers knowledge & experience.
4. Researchers interest &

motivation.

5.Research ethics & principles.

6. Subjects & participants.


7. Resources.
8. Time.
9. Possible control on extraneous variables.

10.Users of the study findings.

Chapters covered

Presenting
Data

Using
NUD.IST

Using
Atlas.ti

Presenting Data
Clive Opie

Presenting Data

Collecting data?=how to analyze data

Data
Quantitative

Qualitative
Themes

Descriptive
statistics
Parametric tests

Inferential
statistics
Non-Parametric
tests

Issues

Quantitative
Nominal

Ordinal

Interval
Ratio

Mode frequencies

Spearman rank
Order

ANOVA

Statistic analysis

Kruskal-Wallis
test

T-test

Nominal Data
Puts data into categories
Ethnic Groups

Sample of Species in a selected ground


Earthworms
Ants

Sample of Speech communities in a given area


Punjabi
Potohari
Siraiki

Ordinal Data
Indicates Order of Numbers is Meaningful
Scores

Example: Scores in a sample population


Low score vs high scores
Likert Scale
Position of Schools on City-League

No arithmetic significance
Intervals between sets of scores
Difference between 60 & 70 Vs 45 and 55

Interval Ratio Data


Refers to numbers which have regular intervals
Intervals can be interpreted

Can be extrapolated
Generalized to other schools in the locality

Example:
# of Minority Community students in schools of a selected locality

Descriptive Statistics
Describes group

Age ranges in a class

Age Range

Group Total

Cumulative
Percentage

19-21
22-24
25-27

178
42
7

78.4
96.9
100

Trap of Superfluous Data

Inferential Statistics
Tests
Non-Parametric Tests
Parametric Test

Non-Parametric Data
Data
Nominal
Ordinal Data

Can not be Extrapolated


Sphinx Survey, Excel
Kruskal Wallis Test-find if 3 more groups belong to same
population
Spearmans Rank Order-find significant relationship between two
sets of Ordinal Data

Parametric Data
Data
Interval-Ratio

Can be Extrapolated
Requires careful attention to characteristics
ANOVA-mean of more than two samples
Pearsons product Moment correlation-strength of
relationship between two interval scales variables
t-test: -testing the level of significance between the mean of two
samples

Presenting Data
Table
Bar Charts
Graphs
Guidelines

Colors
Simplicity
Labels
Total
Necessity

Age profile
80
70
60
50
40

Age profile

30

20
10
0
19

20

21

22

23

24

25

26

27

Age profile
200

150

100

Age profile

50

0
19-21

22-24

25-27

QUALITATIVE Data
Data
Open Questions
Interviews
Descriptions
Observation Notes

Challenges
Volume
Creating meaning (themes and issues)
Analysis is not straight forward or quick
Open to subjectivity of researcher

QUALITATIVE Data
Validity & reliability
Table or charts can be added

Positive aspects
Connects to social reality
Answer more reliably why findings are the way they are
Stumble upon new themes

Using NUD.IST
Ann-Marie Bathmaker

Using NUD.IST
Non-Numerical, Unstructured Data Indexing, Searching and Theorizing
Software Package for analyzing Qualitative

To study interviews and Data Analysis

Data

In this Chapter
Practicalities of Using NUD.IST
Highlights of Pros & Cons (Criticism)
Recommendations for new Users

Analyzing Data in Qualitative


Study
Loads of text for analysis

Context matters
Tone is important & holds meaning
Difficult to get a grip on and make connections
Difficult to Predict what will be important

Researchers
Feel the need
To organize data

Build connections
Cluster parts of texts together
Save time

Starting with NUD.IST


Comes with an Introductory tutorial
Lasts 5 hours
Printed Manual

NUD.IST
Works as a code and retrieve system

Import Text
Doc

Code Parts
of text

Retrieve
Coded Doc

Analyze the
text

Other features
Nodes can be further connected to get subcode
Memos can be attached to the nodes

Coding & links can be modified

Preparing Text for coding


Name files and maintain an index
Change names before importing
Decide units for codes: Sentence or Paragraphs

Criticism
Might distance the researcher from actual data
Categories emerge from data

Links are more important

Criticism
Unnecessary or forced linking:
It is important to avoid the misapprehension that the
coding and computing lend a scientific gloss to qualitative
research. (Coffey et al, 1996)
Manual analysis may lead to more unclear stringing which
is difficult to get back to.
Computer encourages users to be clear about what they
are doing. (Fielding and Lee, 1998)

Criticism
Facilitates the development of theory in highly
organized and systematic way
Systematic Indexing
Researchers develop their own interpretations which
they have to make explicit and justify

Criticism
Tends to distance you from actual data to concentrate
on conceptual notions and, ponder and visualize these

concepts

Criticism
Increase reliability, validity and generalizability
Ease of access and, back and forth movement

Recommendations
Not to be influenced by what the software can do
Be clear at all times why an action has been taken

The world of human experience should be studied


from the perspective of culturally and historically

Using Atlas.ti
Michael Pomerantz

Using Atlas.ti
Software; used to study, analyze and compare
data for Qualitative analysis
Gives good qualitative descriptions
Preferred by researchers working with grounded
theory approach
(engage in interview/real life dialogue)

Preparing Text for coding


Name files and maintain an index
Change names before importing
Decide units for codes: Sentence or Paragraphs

Atlas.ti
Works as a code and retrieve system

Import Text
Doc

Code Parts
of text

Retrieve
Coded Doc

Analyze the
text

Other features
Nodes can be further connected to get subcode
Memos can be attached to the nodes

Coding & links can be modified

Additional features
Has left & right side panes for codes & texts
One word codes
Can auto code a word across texts

Users Views
Allows to build networks of Codes (tree & Higher
hierarchy)
Allows time and space to go back and start all over
again
Allows categorization of codes; (important,
superordinate, Sub ordinate)
Allows later division and merger of codes

Thank you