Research & its methodology


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This Presentation was given in Guru Kashi University Talwandi Sabo (2013) at the inaugural ceremony of Ph.D. program. Bibliography is added for sake of References.

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Research & its methodology

  1. 1. RESEARCH & ITS METHODOLOGY Hardev Singh VIRK Visiting Professor, SGGS World University, Fatehgarh Sahib ( Punjab) Ex-Director Research, GNDU Amritsar
  2. 2. Old Indian Tradition • Guru Chela Prampra. • Seminaries, Madrassas, Pathshalas follow this tradition even today in India. • It is a life long learning process in Classics. • Aristotle followed this tradition in his Academy started in Greece. • Most of the Universities in Europe followed Greek Academy tradition.
  3. 3. Modern Tradition • Research Methodology as a Theory Course has been made compulsory by the UGC. • This is an inter-disciplinary programme. • Rudiments of basic tools of research are taught at entry level. • Selection of Research Guide follows after completion of this course. • Allotment of Research Topic follows it.
  4. 4. What is Research? • Objective: To advance existing knowledge • How to do Research: solve a problem, publish • Dissecting the Dimensions of Research: topic, novelty, technology, scope, mode, methods, i deology, politics, utility • Reassembling the Dimensions: quantitative vs qualitative research
  5. 5. How to do Research • Research is all about addressing an issue or asking and answering a question or solving a problem, so… • Identify an issue, question, or problem. – Talk with people who want or need your study. • Find out what's already known about it. – Talk with experts and/or read their reviews and the original research on the topic. • Plan, cost, and do your study accordingly. • Write it up and submit it for assessment. – Better still, do a good job on it and submit it for publication. • Your work will benefit more people if you publish it. • Rule No. 1 in academia is publish or perish.
  6. 6. Topic: what are you researching? physical Technological • Examples – Physical: the effect of a variable on a system. – Chemical: synthesis and factors affecting it. – Mathematical: developing an algorithm or computation technique to solve a problem; Mathematical modeling. – Technological: developing a new device; improving device performance; reliability studies and its redundancy factor. – Social: effect of technology on society and risk-management. • Finding a good question/problem to address can be hard. – It helps to have a good supervisor, good colleagues, and/or knowledge or practical experience of and affinity for a topic. – You must read journal articles to find out what's already known.
  7. 7. Creating new or reviewing published info? create review • Most research projects are so-called original investigations. – You obtain new data or information about a phenomenon. – You reach a conclusion and try to publish it. • Some research projects are reviews of the literature. – You use other researchers' published data or info about a phenomenon. • A quantitative statistical review is called a meta-analysis. – You should "earn your spurs" doing original research before taking on a stand-alone review. – But a write-up of an original investigation always has to include a short review of literature.
  8. 8. Technology: develop new or use existing method(s)? develop new use existing • Sometimes a legitimate topic for study is methodological. • For example, development or novel investigation of… – – – – – a measuring device a psychometric instrument (questionnaire or inventory) a protocol for a physical performance test a diagnostic test a method of analysis. • You usually include or focus on a reliability and/or validity study of the measure provided by the method. – Validity = the relationship between observed and true values. – Reliability = reproducibility of observed values.
  9. 9. Scope: case or sample? case sample • Are you solving a single case of something, or is it a sample that will allow you to generalize to a population? • In a case study… – – – – – You are interested in "what happened or will happen here". Your finding applies only locally: to the case you studied. The quest for an answer can be like that in a court case. Qualitative methods are often required. You reach an answer by applying logic (= common sense?) and skepticism to your knowledge and to the information you gather. • Be wary of conventional wisdom and your own prejudices. – It may be possible to estimate probabilities of benefit or truth of various answers.
  10. 10. Mode of Enquiry: observational/interventionist? observational or non-experimental or descriptive interventionist or experimental • In an observational study… – The aim is to gather data or information about the world as it is. – So you hope the act of studying doesn't substantially modify the thing you are interested in. • In an interventionist study… – You do something to the world and see what happens. – You gather data or information almost always before and after the intervention, then look for changes.
  11. 11. Outline of Research Process • Phase 1: essential first steps • Phase 2: data collection • Phase 3: analysis and interpretation
  12. 12. Phase 1 • Clarify the issue to be researched and select research method(s). • Essential because a question that is unclear or too broad cannot be answered. • The research method allows the research to be conducted according to a plan or design. • Clarifying the question and method enables the researcher to be clearer about the data reqd. • Therefore to make a decision about what sample size, or the amount of data, is needed.
  13. 13. Phase 2 • Collecting the data – Research surveys, interviews, literature review, participant observation, etc….. – attending the subject conferences and making copious notes throughout • Summarising and organising the data – Excerpts from and summaries of transcripts – Thoughts arising from notes on conference
  14. 14. Phase 3 • • • • Analysis, interpretation Relating the data to the research question Drawing conclusions Assessing the limitations of the study
  15. 15. Reporting and Writing up • Writing up occurs after the research is done • Not everything that is done is reported • Have to leave some stuff out!! • The research report summarises the activities in such a way that they are clear to the reader, and so the reader could repeat the research.
  16. 16. A Research Report • A Research Report should generally include: – Statement of problem – review of relevant literature – statement of hypothesis or research objectives – description of research design – selection and operationalization of variables – description of sample selection procedure – description of how data was collected – data presented and summarised in words – conclusion, limitations, and implications – bibliography or references cited – appendices
  17. 17. Some Useful Hints for Research • • • • • • • Select a Competent Research Supervisor. Select a challenging problem in thrust areas. Generate experimental data, theory follows. Computation & model making is helpful. Criticism by peers is always helpful. Publication of research work is a MUST. Proper environment at home and work place is conducive to research.
  18. 18. Literature References • 1. Dawson, Catherine, 2002, Practical Research Methods, New Delhi, UBS Publishers’ Distributors. • 2. Kothari, C.R.,1985, Research MethodologyMethods and Techniques, New Delhi, Wiley Eastern Limited. • 3.Kumar, Ranjit, 2005, Research MethodologyA Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners,(2nd.ed.), Singapore, Pearson Education.
  19. 19. My Personal Experience • Advised by my teachers and Dr Bhagat Singh to undertake research studies. • I chose Elementary particles/ cosmic rays as topic of my research study. • Visited Punjab University Chandigarh in search of a research supervisor (Prof. MS Swamy) & then Prof. Yog Prakash of Jammu university. • Later on decided to go abroad for Ph.D. under Indo-Russian (1969) & then Indo-French (1970) Exchange Programme of MHRD.
  20. 20. Marie Curie University, Paris (1970) • Helped by an Indian Scientist, Dr Sham Lal Malick, in Paris University, which saved my one year. • Prof. Max Morand was my Supervisor and Tsai Chu, my research guide. • Started work on my research problem after 2 weeks; scanning of nuclear emulsion plates to find nuclear interactions for study. • Data analysis started after 6 months; first results reported after one year. • Results of my study rejected hypothesis of my own guide; my thesis went against his findings!
  21. 21. Reception to French Boursiers(1970)
  22. 22. Ph.D. viva in Paris University
  23. 23. Researchers in Paris University
  24. 24. My Viva Examiners
  25. 25. Nobel Laureate Abdus Salam in GNDU Amritsar (26 Jan. 1981)
  26. 26. A Visit to ICTP, Trieste, Italy (1985)
  27. 27. My Connection with God Particle
  28. 28. Nuclear Reactor Training in Budapest
  29. 29. Radon Field Work in Palampur (HP)
  30. 30. Among Hippies of Florence, Italy