How to Do Your Research Project: A Guide for Students in Education and Applied Social Sciences

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SAGE Publications, Jun 4, 2009 - Social Science - 254 pages
2 Reviews
Explains the main design frames and methods of data collection and analysis used in education and social science research. This book includes: deciding your topic and your research question; project management and study skills; doing a literature review; revising your question and theorising; deciding on an approach; and design frames. 'Whether embarking on research as an undergraduate or for a doctorate, Gary Thomas' book will be of great value to you. It is refreshingly different from other books about doing research: it's informative, well-written, wide-ranging yet sufficiently detailed and above all it's enjoyable to read! I recommend it highly' - Professor Peter Earley, Institute of Education, University of London. Are you doing a research project? Do you need advice on how to carry out research? With many practical examples, "How to do a Research Project" takes you through what should happen at each phase in the project's schedule. Gary Thomas explains the main design frames and methods of data collection and analysis used in education and social science research, and he provides down to earth advice on how to weave these elements together into a coherent whole. Structured according to the main phases of doing a project, the book covers: deciding your topic and your research question; project management and study skills; doing a literature review; revising your question and theorising; deciding on an approach: methodology and research design; design frames; ethics and access; the right tools for the job: data gathering; how to analyse the information you gather; and discussing findings, concluding and writing up. This book will be invaluable for undergraduate, postgraduate, CPD and doctoral students undertaking a project in the applied social sciences. Comments from students using the book: 'I would definitely buy the book!' 'Exceedingly useful! I loved the language (not too complicated) and tone! readable.' 'I thought this was wonderful and pulled together things I had used several books to find. For me, it 'cut to the chase' on some of the complex terminology and also gave insight in to how important and relevant each part was.' 'I find it so clear, love the visual models, and the language is so simple! It has practical hints! as I read it I didn't feel a great weight being laden upon me (which some books do make you feel).' 'I loved this book! It brought 'research methods' alive. I have read so many 'dense' books on the subject that almost kill the joy of doing research, particularly for new researchers who are trying to understand how the theoretical part fits with the practice! I really liked the 'road maps' - a great start and useful as an introductory discussion tool! I like the way that [it covers] potentially complex issues in an uncomplicated way. The approach takes the reader step-by-step through the research journey in a way that talks the reader through what needs to be considered and why, with unpretentious language! I really enjoyed this book and will definitely have it on my reading list.'.

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About the author (2009)

Gary Thomas took up the post of chair in education at Birmingham in 2005. Before university teaching, he worked as a teacher and as an educational psychologist. In higher education – at the University of Leeds, at Oxford Brookes University, UWE and University College London – his teaching and research have focused on inclusion, special education, and research methodology in education. He has received awards from the ESRC, the Nuffield Foundation, the Leverhulme Trust, the DfES, Barnardos, the Cadmean Trust, local authorities and a range of other organisations. Most of his funded research has been on inclusive or special education, though his Leverhulme Research Fellowship was awarded to examine the role of theory in education. He currently leads an ESRC thematic seminar competition in the Teaching and Learning Research Programme on the assessment of quality in educational research. He is the founding co-editor of a Taylor & Francis Carfax journal, the International Journal of Research and Method in Education and he is an editorial board member of the British Educational Research Journal.

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