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  • 1. Lauren Nourse710 Week 2 BeniciaFebruary 18, 2010Chapter 4 1. Relationship between a research topic, a research question, and a set of hypotheses? Quantitative research approaches may be guided by either research questions or hypotheses whereas qualitative research approaches are directed only by research questions. The research question is the fundamental question inherent in the research topic under investigation. It guides the research study. The research question is often just the research topic reformed into a question. Hypotheses offer speculative answers but guiding research questions do not. Hypotheses are educated guesses about the findings of a study made before the study begins. They make predictions about the outcome of the study and often are not useful in qualitative studies . 2. Does homework translate into higher test scores? a. null hypothesis: There will be no difference in student scores on chapter finals between those students who completed assigned homework and those students not assigned homework. b. nondirectional research hypotheses: There will be a difference in the results of student scores on chapter finals between students who are assigned and complete homework and those not assigned homework. c. directional research hypothesis: Students who are assigned and complete homework assignments will achieve higher scores on chapter finals 3. Qualitative Case Study: Can virtual computer labs provide the same level of learning as hands-on labs? Quantitative Investigation: Is student understanding of a science concept better understood and retained if the student investigates the topic through a virtual computer based lab or in a classroom laboratory? While the questions are basically the same the research outcomes could appear markedly different. A qualitative case study might produce a research outcome withe a more holistic result such as increased student interest and attention in class as measured by reduced number of disciplinary actions needed. Science might be perceived as more “fun” and therefore more worthy of their time and effort. The quantitative study results would be based on actual test score data. 4. Correlational research a. http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/new_study_finds_correlation_between_social_me dia_and_financial_success.php This article claims that brands most engaged in social media are also experiencing higher financial success rates than those of their non-engaged peers. While this article gives credibility to its premise through several charts and graphs, it also states that “Whether this correlation is actually a causation cannot be proven with the data on hand, it can only make the implication.”
  • 2. It is often the case that the results of the research are summarized in the heading and little else of substance is provided as backup to the statement. This seems most often the case with pop- culture topics. The article cited seems like a misrepresentation as it uses its charts and graphs to support its premise but buried within the article does admit that this information can only make the implication. 5. Research design for: Does homework translate into higher test scores? A. Group comparison design: Cause: homework Effect: higher test scores • Anticipated Research Design: Qualitative Constant Comparative Method: • Data is collected on test scores as compared to student homework turn in rate • Observation is made that test scores might be effected by level of homework completed • Once observation is made focus on types of homework being given. For example: rates of turn in for routine weekly workpage assignments versus rates of turn in for larger project based assignments. • Begin analyzing factors such as number of student absences, number of school holidays interrupting a routine school schedule, day of week tests are given, length of test, type of test. • Begin to analyze student data such as reading competencies, grade level readiness. • Analyze data collected and form new hypothesis based on results. B. Research design for: Can virtual computer labs provide the same level of learning as hands-on labs? Anticipated Research Design: Group comparison design. • Establish 2 groups with similar characteristics- anticipate 2 morning classes being taught same subject. • One group will receive laboratory instruction via virtual lab on the internet. • Second group will receive laboratory instruction using lab equipment and traditional experimental design. • Both groups will have received the same background instruction and will have been assigned the same homework leading up to the labs. • Assessment of lab will be by traditional multiple choice testing criteria. • The difference in test scores for the students in the two groups would depend on the difference in laboratory experience.Chapter 5.1. Benefit of collecting qualitative: You can ask more questions about how they feel about a topic such ascience which might give insight into the effort put into the topic. Qualitative inquiry often can lead to amore detailed quantitative study yielding data to support the research question.2. Teacher researchers must insure the quality of the collected data because of the emotions ofteninvolved with studying students and student habits. Public school education in particular usually dealswith students from a wide variety of socio economic backgrounds. Mis-use of mis-interpretation of data
  • 3. due to failure to understand all the parameters involved with the study population can have emotionalrisks and can devalue your research results.3. Observation: Observation made of same grade, same subject teacher. I did not offer any commentsduring the period of my observation but instead held a reflection session with the teacher who had beenobserved following the observation. My observation focused on teacher presentation of a computeractivity and interaction with students once they were involved in the activity itself.Errors: I focused on actual delivery information instead of style. How did students respond to theinstructions? Were they clear on what to do? Did teacher allow time for questions before dismissing to theactivity? During the activity did I mark on my observation sheet the actions of the teacher as he interactedwith students? Were there students off task because they didn’t understand the instructions or because thetask was too difficult? Was the teacher able to get around to all students needing assistance?4. Semistructured Interview Guide Interview with teachers: • How long have you been teaching this grade level and subject matter? • How often do you assign homework? • How many nights do you give for students to complete the homework? • Do you have a routine day of the week that your homework is due or is it random? • How long do you anticipate it will take your students to complete the assigned work? • Do you provide time in class for students to start homework? • Do you grade your homework? • How much does homework count towards your students’ total grade? • What do you think is the purpose of your routine homework? • Do you accept late work? • If you do accept late work does it receive full credit or is it reduced in value? Interview with administrator • Is there a school policy regarding how much homework is assigned? • Who monitors a grade level homework volume? • Do you provide guidelines as to how homework should contribute to a student’s grade?