EDFN 5301 - Sample Chapter Reflections
Chapter 3 Reflection Identifying Research Problem
This chapter was very informative in that it provided much information about identifying research problems. There are an array of ways to identifying research problems such as educational settings. But three things which stood out the most was the difference in the research problems from quantative and qualitative, deciding if a problem should be researched, and of course how to write a statement of the problem section. The difference from quntative to qualitative I feel are important in this chapter because there must be a relation between the problem and the approach you use to research your problem as clearly stated in the book. It would not make sense to conduct a study on a problem which is better suited one way or the other. Cresswell explains how quantative is better suited in explanation and qualitative is better suited for exploration. This is very fitting on how these two already exist in the types of research they are. Both quantative and qualitative have a variety of ways in which to help identify the direction of your research. Quantative measures variables while qualitative learns about the views of individuals and assess a process over time. One disticnt difference is how quantative test theories and qualitative actually generates theories. Deciding if a problem should be researched I feel is also important. It will help save wasted time as time is one thing you will need a lot of in order to conduct research on a topic. Taking the time to decide if researching a topic is worthy of researching is great as it will save more time in the long term. The steps outlined are also great as it gives you criterium on which to operate your analysis of the research topic. The criterium includes deciding if the research is going to fill a gap, deciding if the topic will help those silenced have a voice, and if your research is going to help professionals change the way things currently operate. The final idea which stood out was writing the statement of the problem section. I thought that the statement of the problem section was just a clear statement about the problem one wishes to research. I had no idea it included a topic, research problems, a justification of the importance of the problem, our deficiencies in the problem, and the audience. One thing which is still puzzling is the template for the statement of the problem section. It was not clear to me if the section should bewritten as one paragraph, different paragraphs, or as a table in figure 3.4 or can it be written both ways?
Chapter 7 Reflection
Chapter seven, what an eye opener. Who would have known that the very surveys I fill out for work, actually had names. The ones I rememebr the most are the surveys structured as scoring data surveys and that the numbers assigned to each response actually meant something. I have filled out many surveys in my years as a teacher and college student. It is kind of neat to find out that it is related to quantitative research and the answers are used for a purpose. I always wondered what happened to those surveys I filled out. Little did I know they were being used for a purpose. The person who received the survey, compiled and organized the data into a software program for analysis. There are actually codes assigned and I am sure even a code book. It is also awesome to know that there are jobs assigned to people secifically for quantitative research. These people input data, check for missing data, clean the data, and fix missing data. This chapter also helped me understand mean, median, and mode more clearly and not to mention when I should reject and fail to reject the null hypothesis. Even though the steps are still a bit fuzzy, I now know that if the p value is less than alpha, then I should reject the null hypothesis. If the p value is greater than alpha, then I should fail to reject the null hypothesis. I am sure with some individual practice, all of the steps will not be as fuzzy. Data can be reported in tables and figures. I think the one I have seen most are the tables. I know that I have seen data reported this way, again I had been oblivious of the whole process. Although there were still some gray areas, I enjoyed this chapter......If I did quantitative research, I think I would enjoy it equally to qualitative. I still have to admit that I enjoy to hear stories. That means I would love to conduct interviews. Can we please go over descriptive anaysis briefly? Ok. I understand that in order to describe trens I must use statistics, but the example figure 7.2 confuses me. I need help understanding this. Hope we cover this in class........
Can we please review the all the steps again in class? Going over the information before I read it helped. I really liked that I was able to better understand the chapter.
Chapter 9: Analyzing and Interpreting Qualitative Data
I found this chapter to be the most interesting. Since I am interested in doing a Qualitative Research Study, I am grateful for the insight the text offered. I liked how the text described analyzing the data as it is being collected. I believe in the first part of the chapter, the text stated the phases were iterative or cycling back and forth. I looked at it as being reflective. I chose the term reflective on account of qualitative research allowing for interpretation or subjectivity.
I never realized how important organizing the data was. I never gave a lot of thought to the data collected being so large the researcher would have to organize it. I guess I organize everything so much that I never think about not organizing things.
One concept I was extremely familiar with was transcribing data. I have taken counseling practicum and internship classes in which I had to transcribe an hour long session with an unknown client. Once the transcription was completed I presented the material to the treatment team in order for feedback to be given on whether or not I was on the right track. The guidelines we followed were practically word for word what the text indicated. It seems like it took a lot longer than 4 hours to transcribe a 1 hour session. However, I learned that following the guidelines as indicated in the text allowed for great organization on my part and I could remember my perceptions at the time and the concepts I wanted to present.
One major thing I learned from the chapter was the information on the specific programs available for the computer. I have researched some of the sites mentioned in the text and have found several of them to be most useful. I have found the ethnograph to be most useful. I went to the quails research site and have bookmarked it as one of my favorites.
When the chapter began talking of coding the data collected, I got confused. It seemed as though the text was talking in circles. However, when I looked at figure 9.5 things were less confusing. Actually all of the figures in the chapter were most helpful. I felt as though when I found myself getting confused by the wordiness of the text, the figures were what clarified the text.
The two things I didn’t like about the chapter were: there wasn’t enough detail on interpreting findings and validating the accuracy of findings. It seems as though interpreting the findings are based on the researchers’ personal reflections which in my opinion can be skewed by the researchers’ passion for the subject. (I need to keep that in mind when I do my research) Validating the findings could have been explained in more detail however I do believe that if the researcher does frequent member checks, validation would be less skewed by personal reflection.
As far as questions, I would like to discuss interpretation of findings in class.
In this chapter, I inevitably connected to the project that I am doing for another class. My project is a quantitative one and I already went through some of the phases talked in the chapter.
I figured that my target of analysis (subjects or participants) was going to be NCAA division 1 players. My choice was based on the level of players, on the sampling size, and on the diversity of the sample (gender). My sample size is of a total of 20 players, 10 females and 10 males. This way I am able to manipulate my independent variable (positive self-talk) on males and females tennis players. For the ones that are not familiar with this term, self-talk is ” what you say in your head or out loud” (operational definition), and I believe that it makes a big difference on the outcome of tennis matches. Mental toughness is one of my areas of interest and consequently I am doing my research on it.
My sample is representative of the population that I want to study. Therefore with characteristics that will enable me to make a possible generalization to the entire population of NCAA players with the same characteristics. For this to happen, I purposely chose my sample. It was convenient because I work with them on a regular basis; however, I believe it is considered purposive sampling. (One of my questions is exactly that).
I will be doing an experimental study where the entire group will have the same treatment. The 20 players will perform tennis serves on a pretest experience and they will do a post-test after the independent variable is introduced to all of them exactly the same way. They will perform tennis serves again on a post-test experience and results will accept or reject my null hypotheses. "there will be no significant differences in serving performance of college tennis players who use positive self-talk and college tennis players who do not use positive self-talk."(null hypotheses). My hope is to reject the null and accept the alternative hypotheses, meaning that there is an effect of positive self-talk on serve performance of NCAA tennis players.
Question: what is the difference between a quasi-experimental study and experimental study? also, what is the difference between purposive sampling and convenient sampling?
I thought that one of the main points in this chapter is the different sampling procedures. I have asked a lot of questions in class about true random sampling and how that would relate to the research I work with in the medical and science field. I didn’t know that there were that many different was to random sample but after looking at them I can see the difference and how each would be used. I thought that probability sampling was the most random but you need a very large and varying group of people. Convenience sampling seemed like the method I see used most often. The review board approval section was a review for me but something that I think I will use a lot in the future. When I worked in the ESNL lab during school I had to go though an online course on privacy, informed consent and board approval. It was interesting seeing the forms and papers written to do the testing we were doing in the lab. I still think the experiments done prior to the federal legislation were unfathomable. In a past psychology class we had looked in depth at the syphilis studies and the damage that occurred because of it. The third aspect of this chapter that I can relate to is how to record behavioral observations. At sylvan we record what the student did for every hour they are there. There is also a scale rating of their motivation, speed, concentration and cooperation that hour. They are measured on a high medium low scale. It sometimes seems like they aren’t a big deal but when you get a new student or a student that you haven’t worked with it is very useful to see how they have worked in the past. My question for the chapter was on nominal scales. If the nominal is based on an actual assessable number and the participant knows what the numbers are based on, can that affect their response and if so should the scale be changed? When you perform a max exercise test there is a rate of exertion scale from 7 to 19 that they point to during given times in the test. The numbers are not from 1 to 10 because they are a base ten scale of heart rate so if a participant knew this they could associate their heart rate to where they should be on the scale. It just seemed like something to think about.