3. (2) weeks of Nov. 10 and ASSIGNMENT #6: OPTIONAL CLASS As you work on your research project, keep in mind Himmelstein's Rules for Social These come with the territory; they do not reflect your intelligence and creativity. Many issues arise during doing research; the researcher is supposed to deal with these issues and solve these problems. 3 Recommendations . For example if you are embarking on a brand new topic there may not be much literature to. Failure to practice writing research drops interest in doing research. students in research. 1. How to introduce the topic. 2. How to formulate statement of the problem. 3. Transfer of knowledge into practice of research is not easy. It calls for.
Doing Research! Not 3. Your
Not Finding Anything on Your Topic? Librarians are experts in locating information and providing strategies for analyzing existing knowledge in new ways. Always consult a librarian before you consider giving up on finding information about the topic you want to investigate.
If there isn't a lot of information about your topic, a librarian can often help you identify a closely related topic that you can study. Follow this link to contact a librarian. Choosing a Research Problem. Search this Guide Search. Choosing a Research Problem This guide provides advice on how to develop and organize a research paper in the social and behavioral sciences. The Conclusion Toggle Dropdown Appendices Definition A research problem is the main organizing principle guiding the analysis of your paper.
You are given the topic to write about Step 1: Sources of criticism -- frequently, you'll find yourself reading materials that are relevant to your chosen topic, but you disagree with the author's position. Therefore, one way that you can use a source is to describe the counter-argument, provide evidence from your review of the literature as to why the prevailing argument is unsatisfactory, and to discuss how your own view is more appropriate based upon your interpretation of the evidence.
Sources of new ideas -- while a general goal in writing college research papers in the social sciences is to approach a research problem with some basic idea of what position you'd like to take and what grounds you'd like to stand upon, it is certainly acceptable [and often encouraged] to read the literature and extend, modify, and refine your own position in light of the ideas proposed by others. Just make sure that you cite the sources! Sources for historical context -- another role your related literature plays in helping you formulate how to begin your analysis is to place issues and events in proper historical context.
This can help to demonstrate familiarity with developments in relevant scholarship about your topic, provide a means of comparing historical versus contemporary issues and events, and identifying key people, places, and events that had an important role related to the research problem.
Sources of interdisciplinary insight -- an advantage of using databases like ProQuest to begin exploring your topic is that it covers publications from a variety of different disciplines. Another way to formulate how to study the topic is to look at it from different disciplinary perspectives.
If the topic concerns immigration reform, for example, ask yourself, how do studies from sociological journals found by searching ProQuest vary in their analysis from those in law journals.
A goal in reviewing related literature is to provide a means of approaching a topic from multiple perspectives rather than the perspective offered from just one discipline.
Your professor leaves it up to you to choose a topic Step 1: Review your course readings, particularly the suggested readings, for topic ideas. Don't just review what you've already read but jump ahead in the syllabus to readings that have not been covered yet. Search the USC Libraries Catalog for a good, recently published book and, if appropriate, more specialized works related to the discipline area of the course [e. Browse through some current journals in your subject discipline.
Even if most of the articles are not relevant, you can skim through the contents quickly. You only need one to be the spark that begins the process of wanting to learn more about a topic. Think about essays you have written for past classes, other courses you have taken, or academic lectures and programs you have attended. Thinking back, what interested you the most? What would you like to know more about? Place this in the context of the current course assignment.
Use this coverage to refine your idea into something that you'd like to investigate further, but in a more deliberate, scholarly way based on a particular problem that needs to be researched.
Resources for Identifying a Topic Resources for Identifying a Research Problem If you are having difficulty identifying a topic to study or need basic background information, the following web resources and databases can be useful: CQ Researcher -- a collection of single-themed public policy reports providing an overview of the issue, background information, and chronology. New York Times Topics -- each topic page collects news, reference and archival information, photos, graphics, audio and video files published on a variety of topics.
Content is available without charge on articles going back to Understanding your objectives simply helps you get the most out of your research experience. Do research that you care about. You will ideally be spending lots of time — possibly hundreds of hours — at your research placement. In first year especially, I found that there was such an immense pressure to become involved with research.
This led to many students, including myself, applying for research positions in fields that we had little interest in. We were doing a disservice to ourselves because this lack of interest was apparent to application reviewers. Instead of mass-emailing a hundred PIs, identify a small group of PIs whose research genuinely interests you. Personally, I was intrigued by epidemiology and health policy. Many of my peers pushed me towards wet lab research, but I knew that it was not for me.
Maybe in the future. After you have generated a shortlist of PIs, do your homework. Review their most recently published papers to get a sense of the research that they are currently doing. Try your best to understand graphs, tables, and figures, in particular. Familiarize yourself with common terminology used in the field. If this preliminary reading puts you to sleep, try reading papers written by other PIs or papers from another research field. Look for a mentor, not a supervisor.
Be wary of email acceptances. Your PI should care about your career goals and, more importantly, he or she should want to help you achieve said goals. If a PI has an online CV, look for evidence of teaching and supervising activities. During the interview, here are some important questions to ask: The rules presented here are somewhat philosophical and behavioural rather than concrete suggestions for how to tackle a particular scientific professional activity such as writing a paper or a grant.
Kaiser [ 8 ] was never formally published, so that Dr. Hamming's thoughts are not as widely known as they deserve to be. Hamming's talk was remarkable. How can scientists do great research, i. But you should say to yourself: Many think that great science is the result of good luck, but luck is nothing but the marriage of opportunity and preparation.
On the other hand, in the fields of music, politics, and literature, the protagonists often produce what we consider their best work late in life. Great scientists have more than just brainpower. To again cite Hamming: If you think you can't, almost surely you are not going to. Great scientists will go forward under incredible circumstances; they think and continue to think. To paraphrase Hamming, what most people think are the best working conditions clearly are not, because people are often most productive when working conditions are bad.
One of the better times of the Cambridge Physical Laboratories was when they worked practically in shacks—they did some of the best physics ever.
By turning the problem around a bit, great scientists often transform an apparent defect into an asset. Most great scientists have tremendous drive, and most of us would be surprised how much we would know if we worked as hard as some great scientists did for many years.
Given two people with exactly the same ability, the one person who manages day in and day out to get in one more hour of thinking will be tremendously more productive over a lifetime. Great scientists tolerate ambiguity. They believe the theory enough to go ahead; they doubt it enough to notice the errors and faults so they can step forward and create the new replacement theory. Those are often the great scientific contributions.
It is surprising but true that the average scientist spends almost all his time working on problems that he believes not to be important and not to be likely to lead to important results.
Organizing Your Social Sciences Research Paper: 1. Choosing a Research Problem
Constructing Research Questions: Doing Interesting Research. Do not assume that choosing a research problem to study will be a quick or easy task! to study and you choose a topic from that list; or, 3) your professor. Doing additional research on a company might seem unnecessary when searching for a job. Learn why You're (Probably Not) Customizing Your Cover Letter. Alternatively, if you can't approach your supervisor, why not raise the issues at your next exchanging ideas and debating results; and Year 3, you'll be the expert, with nobody but . It shouldn't however prevent you from doing your research.