Selecting the research problem for your doctoral dissertation


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Criteria for choosing the most promising topic and research problem for your dissertation is presented. This presentation was designed for free conferences.

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Selecting the research problem for your doctoral dissertation

  1. 1. How  to  Select  the  Most   Promising  Research   Problem  for  Your   Dissertation  
  2. 2. Topic   General  area  under  study   Problem   What  needs  to  be  studied   under  a  specific  situa5on   Three  Concepts  to  Think  About   Ques0on   What  to  answer  or  test  
  3. 3. Concepts  to  Know   Problem  situa.on   The  context  that  has  called  a  researcher’s  a8en0on  within   the  topic   Research  problem   What  a  researcher  thinks  needs  to  be  studied  within  the   problem  situa0on     Problem  statement   Specific  descrip0on  of  what  intrigues  a  researcher.   Generally  speaking,  it  includes  briefly  what  it  is  already   known  about  the  problem  situa0on  and  that  establishes   the  context  from  which  the  research  problem  emerges,   what  is  unknown  and  deserves  to  be  studied  –  the   research  problem-­‐  and  why  it  is  important  to  know  about   that  problem     Purpose  statement   What  a  researcher  intends  to  find  out  or  do  in  a  study     Research  ques.on   What  a  researcher  specifically  wants  to  answer  –  or  test-­‐   conduc0ng  a  study    
  4. 4. 1. List  topics  that  interest  you   2. Evaluate  each  topic   3. Iden0fy  more  than  one  problem  for  each  topic   4. Evaluate  each  problem   5. Choose  one  main  problem  to  work  with  and  another   alterna0ve  problem  as  plan  B   STEPS  FOR  SELECTING  A  RESEARCH  PROBLEM  
  5. 5. List  of  Topics  for  Reading   Learning/  Instruction   Build a list of topics that interest you •  Effective reading instruction •  Brain and reading learning •  Reading comprehension •  Learning disabilities and reading instruction •  Reading learning and digital natives • The role of motivation in reading learning •  Reading learning and technology • Assessment of reading learning • Teacher education and reading instruction •  English language learners and reading instruction •  Phonemic awareness and reading learning •  Reading and 21st schools
  6. 6. Evaluate  Each  Topic   Note  about  manageable:  Could  you  manage  the  topic  in  terms  of  its  scope?  Is  it  not  too  broad  or  narrow?    How  do  you  know  if   you  have  a  manageable  topic?  Generally  speaking,  you  have  a  manageable  topic  when  you  are  able  to  state  clearly  a)  who  is   associated  with  the  topic;  b)  what  specific  aspect  of  the  topic  interests  you;  c)  what  loca0on  is  associated  to  the  topic;  d)  why  the   topic  is  important  (its  implica0ons  from  the  knowledge,  social,  legal,  etc  point  of  view);  and  e)  what  period  of  0me  is  associated   to  the  topic.  Of  course,  all  criteria  may  not  apply  to  every  topic.  
  7. 7. Identify  Problems  for  Each  Selected  Topic   Remember  that  that  you  first  think  of  what   a8racts  your  a8en0on  because  it  is  not  working   properly  within  the  topic  (problem  situa0on).   Then,  you  reflect  on  what  you  consider  necessary   to  research  in  order  to  address  what  is  not   working  (research  problem).    
  8. 8. Evaluate  Each  IdentiJied  Problem  
  9. 9. What  are  your  most   promising  research   problems?   Finally, be as pragmatic as possible. You have to finish your dissertation in an established period of time; therefore, choose a research problem that lets you finish on time. Leave complicated ones for future studies and always have another very related problem ready (plan B) in case you need it 1.  Do you really like them? 2.  Do you think the selecting process is suitable for doctoral students to have a strong basis to begin their dissertations? 3.  What would you suggest to refine the process?
  10. 10. Now  you  know  how  to   1.  Choose appropriate topics for developing your dissertation 2.  Select the most promising research problem for your dissertation
  11. 11. Upcoming  News/Events   Is  your  literature  working  for  you  when  you  need  it?  What  is  it  and  when  will  you  need  it?   09/29/2013   How  to  formulate  your  research  ques0ons   10/05/2013   Research  the  helps  you  develop  your  world:  Ac0on  research  +  doctoral  disserta0on   10/06/2013   Upcoming  Conferences  at  DoctoralNet:  
  12. 12. Thanks  for  reading   Hope you find this conference useful and want to meet us soon at