It was good to discuss with some of you for your research briefs yesterday afternoon. You engagement in the course is highly appreciated and encouraged. I would like to provide the follow information for your consideration. We are happy to provide further assistance whenever you need.
First of all THIS IS A RESEARCH BRIEF NOT A RESEARCH PROPOSAL. It is not necessary to spend too much of your time yet on your topic of interest. It can be changed later our primary aim here is to learn how to write a RESEARCH BRIEF. If the key structures of the research brief are there, and you know the key procedure to write a research brief then you are already pretty successful. Remember this is the beginning of our course and much of the key contents to be learned and practiced in the coming weeks. A concise, neat brief with all the key sections, and the document is in a logic flow and is presented in academic English should be sufficient at this stage.
Based on our experience, the key steps of writing a research brief include:
Refine your topic to reflect a research problem that you want to investigate. Generally a research problem is drawn from literature- the gap of certain research in a discipline/multiple disciplinary area. For most of us being a students, probably doing so following an opposite way, which is finding an interested topic first then gathering literature to demonstrate the value of our research topic.
Framing the topic (research problem) into research questions. This is to say, to address the research problem we need to answer several questions. In our case two or three questions should be enough.
Think about how to address the research questions. Basically, to choose the right research methods quantitatively, qualitatively or mixed methods. Key tasks are consider how to collect data to support our argument, to address research questions. Please consider budget and time constraints when choosing your research methods. The bottom line should be the research design is DOABLE. (The consideration of philosophy stance often required, it is very confusing to many of new comers, thus can be omitted at this stage).
Plan data collection, define the right research subjects. This is to answer where the data are to be collected in order to address the research questions. Use the most efficient way to collect required data.
Plan and manage your research project and monitor the progress. The gantt chart is most commonly used method to plan your project. Budget for the project should be at least practical.
Using the references to support key arguments in the text.