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Recent Posts

Category: Research and Writing

A format for discussion of research and writing issues.

Research on Research

What do you do when you are unsure how to approach the research process? Perhaps you have discussed your concern with your cohort, as one student did and still felt that more assistance was needed. As good as the cohort process is, sometimes students need to take a further step and "do research on how to research." This was the counsel that this particular student received from Program Director, Dr. John Nissley. It proved to be very beneficial! Two books that are helpful in the research process are:  Davies, Richard E. 1984. Handbook for doctor of ministry projects: An approach to structured observation of ministry. Lanham, MD: University Press of America, Inc. Tull, Donald S. and Gerald S. Albaum. 1973. Survey research: A decisional approach. New York, NY: Intext Educational Publishers.  Both are available at the University of Findlay library.  Have you found any resources that are especially helpful in learning new tools for research? If so, please share with us. Blessings, Li ...

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As I see it?

 Perhaps you have a problem in your ministry context that requires more evaluation than is immediately available to you. Maybe you have been aware of a persistent problem in other ministry settings that just never seems to get resolved. You think you may have an answer. Your own involvement and experience must surely influence any solution but you realize that you need more. You decide to do a thorough research project. At the outset how do you approach your research and writing?    According to Nancy Jean Vyhmeister in Your Guide to Writing Quality Research Papers: For Students of Religion and Theology, and Kate L. Turabian in A Manual for Writers of Research Paper, Theses, and Dissertations,  research requires a way of thinking that differs from a subjective (how I see it) approach to writing. Research writing requires: ·        Objectivity (Vhymeister 57-58) ·        Focus (Vhymeister 58; Turabian 5 ...

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What Research Is - Features of Research

Kate L. Turabian in A Manual for Writer of Research Papers, Theses, and Dissertations, 7th Edition, along with Nancy Jean Vhymeister in Quality Research Papers for Students of Religion and Theology, 2nd Edition, share insights about the meaning of research through the eyes of the researcher. They identify the following distinctive features of research:

1. Research is specific to a particular problem (Turabian, 1.1.6: Vhymeister 2).

2. Research answers questions about the problem (Turabian 1.1, 6, 7; Vhymeister 2).

3. Research leads to knowledge and understanding about the problem (Turabian, 1.1.7; Vhymeister, 2).

4. Research identifies the importance of the problem (Turabian 1.1.7; Vhymeister, 2).

 How do these features of research relate to your own perceptions of the research process?  What other features of research are important to you?

What Research is Not

In her book, Your Guide to Writing Quality Research Papers: For Students of Religion and Theology, Dr. Nancy Jean Vyhmeister identifies six items that do not fit the definition of research (6-7).

1. A string of quotations

2. A rewrite of others work

3. A personal defense

4. A polemic

5. A forum for personal opinion

6. A sermon

Which of these are most likely to influence or impact your writing?

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