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Research Methodologies

A guide introducing various research methodologies

Evaluating Researched Articles

 Empirical or Researched Articles describe a study that was completed by the researchers.   These articles usually contain specific sections that allow you to easily identify these articles and evalute them.

  1. Does this article have an Abstract which briefly states the hypothesis or purpose of the study, method, and results or findings?
  2. The article contains an introduction which may be entitled Literature Review which highlights previous research and study in this area.  Does the author cite current research?  Does the author define key terms and concepts?
  3. Find the section entitled Method which describes the research study including information on the participants, type of instruments used, and variables.  What type of research method is used?  What instrument or method of data collection is used?  Who are the participants and how were they selected (i.e. random or purposive sampling)?  What variables were considered?
  4. The Results section states the results of the study.  Keep in mind quantitative methods report results using numbers and statistics.  Results may be reported using charts, graphs, or tables. Can you briefly summarize the results?
  5. A Discussion examines the Results in light of the hypothesis, interpreting their meaning and noting interesting or surprising findings.  Does the author relate the results to the initial hypothesis or purpose?
  6. Limitations may be a sub-heading or included within the Discussion.  What Limitations were present in the Method?
  7.  The Conclusion or Implications of a study may be a heading or included within the Discussion.  What Conclusion did this article make?  How should this conclusion inform or change behavior, ideology, or practice?
  8. How does this article concur or differ from other articles you found?  Items to consider include similarities or differences in Method (particularly participants and instruments), Results, and Conclusion.  Do the findings of various articles substantiate each other or do the findings cancel each other?

The following video walks through a demonstration of these steps.

Evaluating DMin Projects

It is important to keep in mind that DMin Projects are so much more than simply an extended research paper or report.  In a DMin Project, the author actually conducts a project or study of an issue that must include specific sections.  As such, the reader must look for and evaluate aspects of the project prior to referencing it in their own research.  

1. Does the project have an introduction or initial description of the problem or issue being researched, the method being used, and the results of the project?

2.  What is the problem or issue being researched? 

3. Describe the method used in the project including who are the participants, what instrument(s) are being used, and other variables unique to this project.  In short, describe the method to someone who has not read this project. 

4. Summarize the results or findings of the project related to the instruments used in the method.

5. Summarize the conclusion or implications of the study. Are the implications transferable to other settings?

6. How does this project concur or differ from other resources or DMin projects you have read?  Do the resources susbstantiate each other or cancel each other out?  

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