601 Study Guide

601 Module 1 Study Guide

601 Module 2 Study Guide

601 Module 3 Study Guide

DIM 601: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

 

1. AIM OF COURSE

 

DIM 601 is a course which aims at developing the research knowledge and skills of students. To achieve success at post graduate level it is fundamental for students to be able to work independently and to efficiently conduct and report on scientific research.

 

2. WORKING PROCEDURES

 

This compulsory open learning course must be completed during the first year of study. It is divided into three modules consisting of study material and practical assignments: Students will receive the necessary orientation and guidelines regarding the different modules during contact sessions. It is therefore expected from students to be present during these contact sessions. In order to ensure that students do in fact manage to complete this course within the given time schedule, assignments which must be completed and handed in by the predetermined closing dates will be issued and discussed during contact sessions. The assignments submitted will be evaluated as part of year marks.

It will be assumed from the start that students are in possession of a computer, or at least have access to a computer and that students are expected to be computer literate to some basic degree.

The purpose of the study guide is not to serve as a textbook for the course, but rather as a framework to direct students in their study of the course. The guide will brief students regarding the various modules by means of references to the following information:

 

- The aim and learning objectives of each module.

- Working procedure.

- Study material.

- Assignments to be handed in.

 

3. SUGGESTED STUDY PROGRAMME

 

The focus of the three modules is as follows. Module 1 deals with planning, designing and management of practical research, Module 2 with conducting qualitative and participatory action research, and Module 3 with quantitative research and how to plan and design a survey.

Modules 1 and 2 must be completed during the first semester and Module 3 during the second semester. The following closing dates must be honored for the completion of modules and submission of assignments.

 

4. EXAMINATION

 

After completion of each module, the progress of students will be evaluated by means of an assignment which must be submitted. The modules of DIM 601 are successive to each other and there is two assignments in total. Assignments should be handed in on the set dates. No late assignments will be accepted.

 

Mark allocation will be as follows:

- Assignment 1: (Designing practical research)     30

- Assignment 2: (Proposal)                                 50

- Assignment 3: (Questionnaire)                         20

 

To pass the course a sub-minimum of 40% must be obtained in the examination. To pass the completed course a combined average of at least 50% must be achieved.

 

Attach at the back of all assignments submitted a plagiarism declaration form found at the end of each study guide.

 

DIM 601

MODULE 1: PLANING, DESIGN AND MANAGEMENT OF PRACTICAL RESEARCH

 

1. AIM

 

The aim of this module is to develop the knowledge and skills of students in planning, designing and management of practical research.

 

2. LEARNING OBJECTIVES

 

On completion of this module, the student should be able to:

 

i) Explain the difference between what research is and what it is not by referring to the eight characteristics of research.

ii) Explain and use the six general tools of research namely:

 

- The library and its resources.

- The computer and its software.

- Techniques of measurement.

- Statistics.

- The human mind.

- Facility with language.

 

iii) Find a research topic and formulate a comprehensive research problem with sub-problems and hypothesis.

iv) Conduct a literature study and write a suitable review of the related literature.

v) Plan the research design.

vi) Write a research proposal.

vii) Conduct quantitative survey research.

viii) Prepare a research report.

ix) Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the nature and characteristics of research management.

 

3. WORKING PROCEDURE

 

i) Study Leedy and Ormrod Chapter 1, do project 1.1 on applying the eight characteristics of research and do the self-assessment quizzes.

ii) Study Leedy and Ormrod Chapter 2 and do project 2.1 (Learn the net tutorials) and project 2.2 (Describing the six tools of research) as well as the self-assessment quizzes.

iii) Study Leedy and Ormrod Chapter 3 and do project 3.1 (Finding a legitimate problem) as well as the self-assessment quizzes.

iv) Study Leedy and Ormrod Chapter 4 and do project 4.1 (Searching the World Wide Web) and project 4.2 (Searching the internet for information about your topic). Also do self-assessment quizzes.

v) Study Leedy and Ormrod Chapter 5 and do project 5.1 (Determining the research approach for your study). Do self-assessment quizzes.

vi) Study Leedy and Ormrod Chapter 6 and do project 6.1 (Citation styles for references). Also do self-assessment quizzes.

vii) Study Leedy and Ormrod Chapter 9 and do project 9.1 (Survey research). Do self-assessment quizzes.

viii) Study Leedy and Ormrod Chapter 12 and do project 12.1 (Critiquing a research report) as well as self-assessment quizzes.

ix) Study Mouton Part 1: Managing your research, Chapters 1 to 5 and do a project on the drawing up of a research resource checklist and conduct a critical analysis of research management.

 

4. STUDY MATERIAL

 

I) Leedy, Paul, D and Ormrod, Jeanne, E. 2001. Practical Research Planning and Design. Seventh Edition

II) Mouton, J. 2001. How to succeed in your Master’s and Doctoral Studies. A South African Guide and Resource Book.

III) Welman, Kruger Mitchell. Research Methodology. Oxford University Press.

 

5. ASSIGNMENTS

 

Hand in by the date announced in advance, all the projects mentioned under “Working procedure” in Leedy and Ormond – it is not necessary to hand in the answers on the self- assessment quizzes. Also hand in the assignment on Mouton (Refer to ix of Working Procedure).

 

All assignments should be submitted on E-Learn or as communicated in class. No assignments will be accepted after the due date.

 

DIM 601

MODULE 2: QUALITATIVE STUDIES AND THE PARTICIPATORY ACTION RESEARCH PARADIGM

 

1. AIM

 

The aim of this module is to develop the knowledge and skills of students to conduct scientific research by making use of the qualitative approach; to apply qualitative research methods and to develop an understanding of Participatory Action research (PAR) as a third paradigm in the social sciences. The emphasis will be on the nature of qualitative research, the design of qualitative research, the methods of gathering qualitative data, the principles of participatory action research and methodological issues in PAR. Student must also develop a research proposal for his/her dissertation under the supervision of a study/leading committee.

 

2. LEARNING OBJECTIVES

 

On completion of this module, the student should be able to:

 

i) Explain the nature of what is described as qualitative research and how qualitative studies differ from quantitative studies.

ii) Understand the notions of objectivity and validity in qualitative research.

iii) Explain the three designs or types of studies that are normally included under the broad umbrella of qualitative research, i.e. ethnographic studies, case

studies, and life histories.

iv) Explain the principle of sampling in the qualitative paradigm.

v) Apply the different methods of gathering qualitative data.

vi) Illustrate the use of qualitative research.

vii) Summarise the principles (main characteristics) of participatory action

research.

viii) Illustrate how different research methods and techniques are used and

adapted within the PAR paradigm.

ix) Construct a project proposal for mini dissertation which will be executable practically.

x) Present the proposal convincingly to a scientific audience.

 

3. WORKING PROCEDURE

 

i) Study Babbie & Mouton Chapter 10 (pp. 270-274) on the nature of qualitative research and summarise the main points in order to distinguish between qualitative and quantitative research.

ii) Study Babbie & Mouton Chapter 10 (pp. 274-278) on objectivity and validity in qualitative research and write a short essay about why objectivity, validity, and reliability in qualitative research are or are not important.

iii) Study Babbie & Mouton Chapter 10 (pp.278-303) on qualitative research designs, sampling, and methods of gathering qualitative data. Then choose a research question and design a qualitative study around it.

iv) Read the main points on p.309 and make sure that you understand them by explaining each of them to a fellow student.

v) Try to do activity 3 on p. 310 of Babbie & Mouton when you have completed this module.

vi) Study Babbie & Mouton Chapter 11 (pp.314-325) and write a short essay on the key epistemological and methodological principles underlying PAR.

vii) Study Babbie & Mouton Chapter 11 (pp.325-330) and illustrate the use of

various research methods within the PAR paradigm.

viii) Read the main points on p. 331 and make sure that you understand them by

explaining each of them to a fellow student.

ix) Work through the working procedure of module 2

x) Study chapter 6 of Leedy & Ormrod and Chapters 4 and 11 of Mouton.

xi) Set up a study leading committee.

xii) Develop project proposal.

xiii) Present written project proposal at project proposal seminar.

 

4. STUDY MATERIAL

 

i) Babbie, Earl & Mouton, Johan. 2001. The practice of social research. (first South African edition.) Cape Town: Oxford University Press Southern Africa. (Chapters 10 & 11)

ii) Coetzee, Jan K; Graaff, Johann; Hendricks, Fred, and Wood, Geoffrey (Editors) 2001. Development. Theory, Policy, and Practice. Cape Town: Oxford University Press Southern Africa. (Chapter 33)

iii) Welman, Kruger & Mitchell. Research Methodology. Oxford University Press.

 

5. ASSIGNMENTS

 

i) Study relevant literature.

ii) Develop preliminary project proposal, (5 to 8 pages) and submit on E-Learn or as communicated in class, in a neatly typed MS Word format.

 

All assignments should be submitted on E-Learn or as communicated in class. No assignments will be accepted after the due date.

 

DIM 601

MODULE 3: PLANNING AND DESIGNING OF A SURVEY OR CENSUS / QUANTITATIVE

 

1. AIM

 

The aim of this module is to develop the knowledge and skills of students to conduct scientific quantitative research. More specifically, the focus is on the planning, designing of a survey and census statistically.

 

2. LEARNING OBJECTIVES

 

On completion of this module the student should be able to:

 

1. Explain the concepts of survey sampling, random sampling, statistical inference and sampling distribution, and state or derive and use basic sampling distributions.

 

(i) Explain what is meant by a sample, a population and statistical inference.

(ii) Define a random sample from a distribution of a random variable.

(iii) Determine the mean and variance of a sample mean and the mean of a sample variance in terms of the population mean, variance, sample size and population size.

 

2. Carry out a survey and apply all the concepts learnt.

 

3. WORKING PROCEDURE

 

(i) Study the material provided and participate in practical activities during contact sessions.

 

4. STUDY MATERIAL

 

i) Leedy, Paul, D and Ormrod, Jeanne E. 2001. Practical Research Planning and Design. Seventh Edition.

ii) Mouton, Johann. 2001. How to succeed in your Master’s and Doctoral Studies. A South African Guide and Resource Book.

iii) Chikobvu D and Verster A. 2007. Planning and Designing of a survey or census. Department of Mathematical Statistics, UFS, Bloemfontein.

 

5. ASSIGNMENTS

 

Construct a structured questionnaire to obtain data for the problem as stipulated in your proposal. Also show how you will analyze the data and prepare a report.

 

All assignments should be submitted on E-Learn or as communicated in class. No assignments will be accepted after the due date.

 

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