As most researchers do, my research was not particular as I encountered diverse pitfalls during the entire research process. These problems ranged from getting started, framing general and specific research question and, at moments I would find out that, though I have made so many efforts collecting data, some of it were not actually addressing the research question. Perhaps, as most researchers would agree (Eisner, 36) the biggest problem is usually getting started. One can decide to look at a particular area, but the area might contain a lot that needs to be brought to a manageable size. This is important as it helps one focus on a certain area with a lot of precision.
Choosing the right topic
This was a crucial step as it would form the basis of the entire research process. It was quite difficult to settle on one topic since there are so many factors that I had to consider. For example I had to look at the material that were at my disposal, the time it would take me to do the preparations for data collection, collect the data, and finally analyze it and consolidate a dissertation paper. Some topics have a broad range of information, and the data collection process may be long and tedious. I had, therefore, to choose a sizeable topic that I can discuss comprehensively. More importantly also, I had to ensure that the subject would carry my interest.
Choosing the methodology
Choosing the right method was also a task. It was a challenge to decide whether I should use qualitative or quantitative approaches. I had first to formulate a problem statement that helped me understand the questions the research was seeking to find answers for. According to Singh, Michael and Li(P.16), Bingyi, issues such as understanding, exploring or generating would suggest a qualitative approach while comparing, relating and correlating suggest a quantitative approach. I also had to ensure that the method I would decide to use would give me accurate data that relates to the topic.
Assembling a research team
I had to take my time to decide who should be included on my research team. I needed people who could look at my topic from a different perspective and help me think outside the literature materials. Also, I had to ensure that I have a list of issues that I need to know from my target population so as to avoid situations in where I would seem to be nagging. I had to ensure that my questions are precise.
Depending on the type of research a researcher is doing, this is an area that challenges most researchers. My target population was a Homosexuals, and I had to devise a plan of getting data from them. Face to face conversions were obviously impossible. I experienced a hard time trying to get willing participants. Additionally I had to make an attempt to include institutions most of which refused to be involved in the research. By explaining the purpose of the research, I eventually managed to get 100 participants.
Analyzing the data
Finally, when I had had all the data collected, it was time to consolidate and analyze it. During data collection, I had to step back and an approach the participants with a mind that was not preconceived so that I could allow them give the information, they had according to their understanding. At this stage, I had to look at the data collected and consolidate it in a manner that addresses the research topic precisely.
Eisner, E. W. On the Differences between Scientific and Artistic Approaches to Qualitative Research. 1981.
Singh, Michael; Li, Bingyi. "Early career researcher originality: Engaging Richard Floridas international competition for creative workers. 2009.
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