M4-Week 5-Home

Educational Research Design Module (Week 5)

The following is a reflection on the week immediately after the class that took place on 16th May 2017 using Gibbs Reflective Cycle.


THIS WEEK:  Data Collection (Home)

Lesson Planner Tool for Maths (Vincent Wade et al, 2016).
Wednesday 17 May 2017
Keyword search instructional design and domain model and mathematics
Note:  Doesn’t have user model layer for adaptivity


Critiquing your chosen journal article
(This involved reading the article by Jones & Lea in Week 5).

The article you have been assigned is listed on the next page and can be accessed in the ‘Content’ folder in Webcourses. Please read the article with the following questions in mind, record your responses and bring them to the next session on May 23rd.
We will ask you to discuss your research design critique with those who read the same paper during the class on May 23rd and to prepare a collaboratively written critique for sharing on Webcourses.

Some questions to think about…

1.     Is there a clear research question?
Not exactly.  However, the research project sought to focus on the textual engagements in digital environments by third level students.

2.     Is the methodology clearly stated by the author(s)?

Yes.  Fine-grained, ethnographic-style (Green & Bloome 1997) research of literacies and
technologies in higher education.

3.     What methods have the author(s) used?
Qualitative text based methods.  There were three sets of interviews over six months.
Interviews carried out in small groups (3 to 4) as well as some individual interviews.  These were followed up by email, chat, text.  This follow-up is what the authors call ‘shadowing’.

4.     What issues – if any – arose during the data collection phases?
Not being insider researchers resulted in limitations in data collection.  Students did not spend much time in the institutions outside of lectures.  Many students worked part-time.

5.     What are the main strengths of the research design?

(a) Good stratified sampling by using 45 students from three very different third level
institutions.  This yielded a broad spectrum of students. (b) Direct observation of students
by outside researchers (c) A rich data-base was assembled (transcripts, field notes (both electronic), curriculum sources, personal development plans (PDPs).

6.     What are some weaknesses of the research design?
No triangulation.