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Research Paper Writing


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Title: Research Paper Writing

Research Paper Writing
Mavis Shang 97??????
Section II
Survey Research
  • I. Main Purpose of Survey Research
  • Collect data from a larger number of people
  • Rely on individuals self-reports of their
  • attitudes, or behaviors
  • II. Design Phase
  • Write the purpose of the survey (like a thesis
  • Write research questions based on the purpose
  • (see p. 170)

Survey Research
  • III. Three Design Considerations
  • Descriptive approach
  • Cross-sectional approach
  • Longitudinal approach

Survey Research
  • Descriptive approach A survey describing
  • the characteristics of a sample at one point in
  • time (e.g., senior students research paper
  • writing difficulties in the Department of
  • Applied English at I-Shou University in 2009)

Survey Research
  • Cross-sectional approach A survey examining
  • several groups at one point in time (e.g.,
  • grade level students writing difficulties in
    the AE
  • Department at ISU in 2009)
  • Pro Compare responses across different grade
  • levels in a shorter time
  • Con Not easy to make a comparison due to
  • different subjects

Survey Research
  • Longitudinal approach A survey examining one
  • group at different points in time (e.g.,
    1-year, 2-
  • year-, and 3-year graduates perceptions of RP
  • course in the AE Department at ISU in
  • Pro Follow the same subjects over a period of
  • Con Take a longer time

Survey Research
  • IV. Data Collection Choices Mail, telephone,
    personal interviews, email, web-based surveys,
  • Mail
  • Pro Collect closed-ended information low cost
  • enough time for the respondents
  • Con Lower response rates no more in-depth
  • information

Survey Research
  • Phone interviews
  • Pro Collect open-ended information higher
  • response rate more additional
  • Con More costly cant observe participants
  • body language and facial expressions

Survey Research
  • Personal interviews
  • Pro Less structured approach more
  • conversational style easy to get
  • information highest response rate
  • Con Take more time

Survey Research
  • V. Sampling Plan
  • Identification of participants Identify the
  • participants who have the information you want
  • who have experienced the event
  • Population definition More specific about the
  • participants sources

Survey Research
  • Two Sampling decisions
  • 1. Probability sampling Need to specify to whom
  • results will be generalized
  • 1-1. Sampling frame to give a list of people
    who have a
  • chance to be selected
  • 1-2. Only choose the population included in
    the sampling
  • frame
  • 2. Purposeful sampling Need to provide
    sufficient details
  • about the important characteristics of the

Survey Research
  • Three sources of sampling errors
  • Coverage errors (a) should be in the sampling
    frame, but not there, (b) should not be in the
    frame, but in there
  • 2. Nonresponse errors (a) refuse to be
    interviewed, (b) cant complete questionnaire,
    (c) cant be reached
  • 3. Sampling errors Use different (wrong)
    sampling strategies drawn from a population

Survey Research
VI. Designing the Questionnaire A. Review
the literature Borrow what has been
designed before (with appropriate citations and
permissions) B. Develop your own
questionnaire 1. follow Delphi Technique
Ask experts to provide ideas for
better questionnaire, and then do a pilot
testing with a larger sample (see p. 180)
Survey Research
2. Explain to yourself why asking each
question 3. Decide format Open (answer questions
in own words) or closed format (multiple-choice,
true-false, checklist) 4. Do a pilot study to
include all alternative responses 5. Avoid
psychologically threatening (socially desirable)
questions 6. Clear items Provide a definition of
the terms first 7. Short items
Survey Research
8. Avoid negative wording questions (e.g., Which
of these are not ?) 9. Avoid items that ask
more than one idea 10.Use appropriate word
level 11.Avoid leading questions 12.Emphasize
critical words by using italics or underlining
or bold letters
Survey Research
  • VII. Formatting the Questionnaire
  • Make it attractive
  • Organize and lay out the questions
  • Number the items and pages
  • Put the returned address and name at the
    beginning and end of the questionnaire
  • Include brief, clear instructions

Survey Research
6. Use examples if necessary 7. Organize the
questions in a logical sequence 8. Begin with a
few interesting and nonthreatening items 9. Do
not put the most important items at the
end 10.Avoid using questionnaire or checklist on
the form (use the title Response Form)
Survey Research
  • VIII. Pilot Testing the Questionnaire
  • Select a sample similar to your population
  • Give more spaces for writing comments
  • Encourage pilot participants to give suggestions
  • Follow the procedures that you plan to use in
    your study
  • Add, change, or delete any questions if necessary

Survey Research
IX. Special Types of Questions 1. Demographic
questions 1-1. Background information (see
p. 186) 2. Nonthreatening behavioral questions
2-1. Ask general questions on usual behavior
first 2-2. Bounded recall e.g., In the last
year.. 2-3. Wording of question e.g.,
Are your difficulties in writing a
research paper mainly due to your
grammar problem?
Survey Research
3. Threatening behavioral questions Any
questions elicit a defensive reaction in the
participant better to use 3-1. open-ended
questions 3-2. longer questions with
explanations 3-3. familiar words 3-4. put
answers into sealed envelopes 3-5. use
appropriate wording (e.g., Did you ever happen
to ., Such behaviors occur with
different frequencies.) 3-6.
use multiple measures until getting the truth
Survey Research
4. Knowledge questions Ask questions to test
participants knowledge of a subject in
school better to use 4-1. knowledge
questions before asking attitude
questions 4-2. appropriate level of
difficulty 4-3. avoid asking Do you happen
to know ..? 4-4. avoid using mail survey
(may check up the answer)
Survey Research
5. Attitude questions Should give a definition
of the term or concept in advance better to
ask 5-1. three kinds of attitudes
5-1-1. affective (like vs. dislike) How does
the person feel about
this? 5-1-2. cognitive (knowledge)
What does the person know
about this? 5-1-3. action What is the
person willing to do about
Survey Research
5-2. assess attitude strength (e.g., How much do
you like or dislike .?) 5-3. avoid asking
more than one concept (e.g., Would you
vote for me and peace or my opponent and
war?) 5-4. use bipolar questions (e.g., Are you
satisfied or dissatisfied with .?) 5-5.
move on to measure degree of positive or negative
attitude (e.g., Are you strongly
satisfied or moderately satisfied with
.?) 5-6. Use five points/alternatives on the
rating scale
Survey Research
  • X. Letter of Transmittal A cover letter to
    specify the purpose of the survey hints to
    motivate the returned questionnaires
  • Appeal to authority Need the well-known persons
  • Appeal to self-interest You are one of the few
    people with the intelligence to be able to help
    us with this issue.
  • Appeal to professional interests This is a very
    important question in our field (society).

Survey Research
4. Appeal to altruism The results of this
survey will be used to solve one of our students
writing problems. 5. Appeal to curiosity Offer
to send a copy of the results 6. Appeal to greed
Offer to send a monetary incentive 7. Appeal to a
sense of connection Enclose a tea bag or a
pencil (more details will be shown in the
consent form)
Survey Research
  • XI. Conducting the Survey
  • Send out an advance (cover) letter
  • Enclose the questionnaire with the transmittal
  • Supervise the data collection
  • Send a follow-up to nonrespondents
  • 4-1. send again
  • 4-2. send a postcard reminder
  • 4-3. make a call
  • 5. Control processing errors
  • 6. Enter the data into the database
  • 7. Clean up the data before you begin analysis

Survey Research
  • XII. Notes Specific to Personal Interviews
  • Hold an introductory meeting to share the
    purpose, and get assurance to participate
  • Schedule the interview time
  • Make a flexible interview
  • Dont use yes or no questions plan to ask
    open-ended questions (e.g., How do you feel about
    ..? What is you opinion about ..? What do you
    think about .?)
  • Conclude with open-ended questions (e.g., Is
    there anything that I didnt ask about..? Is
    there anything that you wanted to tell me.?)
  • Pretest your interview procedures

Survey Research
  • XIII. Starting and Conducting the Interview
  • Briefly review the purpose of the interview and
    information needed
  • Focus on what the participant is saying
  • Sequence the questions from general to specific
  • Ask for specific examples
  • Ask a variety of different kinds of questions
    (see p. 201)
  • Avoid asking why questions better to use how
  • Use role play or simulation questions (If I were
    your ..)
  • Record the interview and take notes