Week 4 Assignment
Purpose Statement and Nature of Doctoral Project or Dissertation-in-Practice
Aligning your methodology with your problem statement is critical when mapping Section 1 components to Section 2. Section 1 and Section 2 mirror each other, so you must ensure consistency in your language and presentation of information, as well as the logical flow of your narrative. As noted previously, the purpose of the doctoral project or dissertation-in-practice is derived from the problem statement, and each element of the purpose statement supports addressing the problem statement. In the Nature of the Doctoral Project or Dissertation-in-Practice subsection, if used in your ADE Proposal and Manuscriipt Template (school-specific), you will provide a summary of the methodology and design and include a brief summary of the data collection procedures and analysis. You may also cite seminal work related to your selected methodology and design.
The questions support the problem and purpose of the Doctoral Project or Dissertation-in-Practice, which are strengthened by the clarification provided in the Nature of the Doctoral Project or Dissertation-in-Practice section. These questions serve to provide direction for hypotheses (when applicable). The purpose is for you to have a fully aligned and focused project.
Aligning the methodology to the problem statement and purpose also assists in achieving increased validity for your Doctoral Project or Dissertation-in-Practice. For example, a problem that is testing the relationship between two variables requires a quantitative approach, while a problem that seeks context is more appropriately examined through a qualitative approach. In fact, the verbiage used in the questions should be derived from the terms used in the methodology, design, and methods.
Recall the following definitions and refer to Figure 4 for a refresher on the relationships among these terms.
Research paradigms, also known as worldviews, are the long-standing philosophical assumptions, principles, and tenets that guide particular and sometimes prescriiptive protocol for systematic research that may differ by discipline. Examples include positivism/post-positivism, interpretivism/constructivism, critical theory, and pragmatism.
Methodology is the system of methods commonly referred to as quantitative, qualitative, or mixed methods.
Design refers to the assembly of choices for the techniques to be employed within a respective study that may include the research approach or paradigmatic tradition such as a quasi-experimental design in quantitative research or phenomenology in qualitative research.
Methods are the systematic tools used to recruit, sample, collect, analyze, and/or interpret information. Think of methods as the tools and techniques used for data collection and analysis. There are more methods than listed in the illustration.
Figure 4. Relationships among paradigm, methodology, design, and method.
When the project design is aligned to the problem statement, it ensures that the selected methods will actually measure what they are intended to measure and validates your project topic and design.
Perhaps one of the biggest challenges encountered in preparing Section 1 is ensuring the selected design and method align with the nature of your intended project. This accomplished via the selection of the appropriate design. A design is a plan crafted to answer questions, designed to address a problem—either philosophical or of practice. Your design should encompass a particular paradigm and include the method that will dictate how, why, and what type of data will be collected and analyzed. You may continue to develop and refine your statement of the problem in this course under the direction of your Chair.
A critical review of your problem statement, purpose statement, and nature of the doctoral project or dissertation-in-practice, (if required by your school) should focus on the alignment of these foundational subsections. Recall Figure 5, introduced in Week 1, which illustrates alignment and coherence of practice-based problem, purpose, and questions.
Figure 5. Alignment and coherence of problem, purpose, and questions
This foundation will provide the structure used later in Section 2 and the pattern for presenting your findings and recommendations in Section 3 after you collect/acquire your data (if applicable).
You will examine resources associated with the conceptual or theoretical framework next week. However, understand that the conceptual or theoretical framework should be the foundation that helps link and inform the problem, scope of project, research questions, methodology, and design (Grant & Osanloo, 2014).
Continue to investigate the Course Resources, leverage the librarians to help support your research, and contact the writing or statistics coaches in the Academic Success Center for assistance in building your Doctoral Project or Dissertation-in-Practice components. Keep building out the ADE Proposal and Manuscriipt Template (school-specific) subsection by subsection in accordance with your Chair’s feedback.
Grant, C., & Osanloo, A. (2014). Understanding, selecting, and integrating a theoretical framework in dissertation research: Creating a blueprint for your “house.” Administrative Issues Journal: Education, Practice, and Research, 4(2), 12-26.