Guidelines and methods for research in library & information science, education, writing studies, and related areas.
You’ll need to make the case in your dissertation (or other research) for the choices you make in data gathering and analysis. Those arguments are actually part of the larger argument you’re making in the project as a whole. For example, if you’re studying the interactions of people in an online community, you’ll need to convince the reader why it makes sense to look at the talk pages, but not blogs, Flickr pages, and mapping parties, or why you selected pages from a particular period of time and not others. Even in the case of the talk pages, per se, you’ll need to show why using say, Internet Community Text Analyzer, gives you the right grain size, not so fine as to obscure significant patterns and not so large as to miss them entirely. The arguments you make here need to be supported by the actual data, and can rarely be addressed in a general way.
- Research methods
- Action research
- Case study of learning–in-depth look at teaching and how learners respond
- Case study of a community information space–how ordinary people find information they need to address everyday problems, such as health care, finding a place to live, or educating children
- Charmaz, Kathy (1983). Grounded theory method: An explication and interpretation. In Robert M. Emerson (ed.). Contemporary field research: a collection of readings (pp. 109-126). Long Grove, IL: Waveland.
- Colorado State University. Conducting observational research.
- Dick, Bob. Grounded theory: A thumbnail sketch.
- Digital Research Tools (DiRT)–wiki containing “information about tools and resources that can help scholars (particularly in the humanities and social sciences) conduct research more efficiently or creatively.”
- Eldredge, Jonathan D. (2004, January). Inventory of research methods for librarianship and informatics, Journal of the Medical Library Association.
- Spear, Karen I. (1989). Book review of Stephen North’s The making of knowledge in composition: Portrait of an emerging field. JAC, 9(1). North’s book is an excellent critique of methods of research and the methodological communities that support them. The book generally pleased people until they read the section that applied directly to their own research. Although North’s book is by, for, and about research, he does a good job of linking theory and practice and for valuing practitioner knowledge. He focuses on composition studies, but what he says applies to a wide range of social science studies.
- Stephenson, Mary Sue. Research methods resources
- Trochim,William M. K. The Research methods knowledge base is a web-based textbook covering the entire research process including: formulating research questions; sampling (probability and nonprobability); measurement (surveys, scaling, qualitative, unobtrusive); research design (experimental & quasi-experimental); data analysis; and writing. It also addresses basic statistics, validity in research; reliability of measures; and ethics.
- Using photography for qualitative research
- Human subjects research
- Reference sources
- Standards for reporting on empirical social science research in AERA publications
- American Library Association’s Guide to Reference is a subscription database including more than 16,000 sources and guidance in the form of introductory essays and annotations for entries
- ProQuest Digital Dissertations–the University of Illinois offers full access. Dissertations written at UI are now being entered in the IDEALS, the institutional repository.
- Inquiry-based learning–the process of research
- Research memos–a system for organizing your research and writing
- Research writing
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