Category Archives: research design

refining your research topic – starting the phd

Where do research topics come from? The research topic you have at the start of your PhD may come from work you did in your Masters. It may come from a professional or policy context, perhaps your own professional work … Continue reading

Posted in academic writing, doctoral research, doctoral researcher, research design, research proposal, research question, research warrant, starting the PhD | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

you’re so vague…

It is important when writing about research to be specific. And by writing about research I mean writing about methods in a journal article, writing methods in a thesis or journal article, writing about research  design in a research bid. … Continue reading

Posted in claims, research design, results, vagueness | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

what is a ‘research warrant’? #knowhow

The notion of a warrant is important in research. It helps to know what the term means, particularly if you get asked a question about your research warrant in, say, a conference presentation or supervision tutorial. Most dictionaries define a … Continue reading

Posted in evidence, research decisions, research design, research methods, research warrant | Tagged , | 5 Comments

the ten habits of highly unsuccessful research bid writers

I’ve just reviewed a lot, and I mean a lot, of research bids. I review research bids regularly, as do a lot of senior academics. Some of them are great and some of them are decent, sensible and worth doing. … Continue reading

Posted in research bid writing, research design, research funding, research methods, research plan, research proposal | Tagged , , | 14 Comments

thinking about research questions

I’ve been asked a few times to post about research questions. My response up to now has been that there is already a lot out there on the topic and I’m not sure what I could add. But of course … Continue reading

Posted in research, research design, research question | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

aims and objectives – what’s the difference?

You’re ready, you’re aimed, and now you have to fire off the objectives. But you’re a bit confused. What”s the difference between the two? An aims-objectives confusion might arise when you are writing thesis proposal and the introductory thesis chapter. … Continue reading

Posted in research design | Tagged , , | 84 Comments

methodology isn’t methods.. or… what goes in a methods chapter

Since I’ve been posting about methods and methodology, I’ve been asked several times to discuss the difference between methodology and methods and how these appear in a methods chapter. This post is by way of an answer. Not all dissertations … Continue reading

Posted in epistemology, methodology, methods chapter, ontology, research design, research methods, thesis | Tagged , , , , | 31 Comments