Research Methods Paper

Assignment 2: Research Methods paper

In this course you have explored Quantitative, Qualitative and Mixed Method approaches to research. Consider the research question you wrote in Module 1. Now that you have explored each type of methodology, decide which methodology would best answer your question and use this for your final mini-methods paper.

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Based on the work you have previously prepared and the feedback you have received from your instructor and your peers, prepare the mini-methods section (including all appendices, such as informed consent, copy of instruments, interview protocol, etc.). 

The final paper should not exceed 15 pages, not including the appendices. This paper should primarily consist of the work that you developed in Modules 2-5 and modified based on feedback from your instructor and your classmates. For the informed consent, and letters of permission, please refer to the University IRB handbook or a dissertation example for templates. If something that should be included is missing (for example, the measure you will be using) place a page with the title or topic of the measure and a few sentences about what will be measured.

The paper must include the following components. Use proper headings and Subheadings, as per the current edition of APA guidelines.

1). Introduction, Problem Statement, Purpose, Research Questions and Literature Review including:

  • An introduction to the research topic including the background of your topic.
  • A section about the significance of your topic and why it is important.
  • The purpose of your study, problem statement and your research questions and/or hypotheses.
    • Cite at least 5 references including a minimum of 3 empirical studies for your literature review. Use the literature list you presented in Module 2 Assignment 1, however elaborate on these to present in paragraph form.  These paragraphs will be a bit more brief than what you would include in your dissertation proposal, however you should include enough information so they lead up to a logical research question (yours).

2). Methods including:

  • Design: A description of the design of your study covering each relevant aspect included in Modules 3-7.
    • If you adopt a quantitative design, clearly identify the type of design (e.g., quasi-experimental); the primary constructs; and hypotheses to be tested. Justify why you chose this design.
    • If you adopt a qualitative design, clearly identify the approach; (ethnographical, phenomenological, case study, etc.) primary phenomena; and primary research question(s). Justify why you chose this design.
    • A mixed methods design must address both of the above.
  • A description of your proposed study’s accessible population; sampling strategy; and the participants including the number, demographic information, setting, and other relevant information. Be sure this is consistent with the type of design.
  • If you adopt the quantitative method, include a description of your intended instruments including sample questions, reliability measures, and types of measurement.
  • If you adopt a qualitative method, describe your data collection method (interview, observation, document review, focus group, etc.).
    • If you plan to conduct interviews, provide a list of sample interview questions including a rational for each question as to what information the response will provide towards answering your research question.
    • If you plan to conduct an observation, describe who and how you will observe.
  • A description of your data collection strategies and procedures for securing informed consent and collecting data.
  • Address generalizability.

3). Limitations (1–2 pages) in which you discuss the limitations of your study in terms of participants, design, data collection, etc.  This is a new contribution to your methods. Please refer to your textbook for examples of limitations.

  • For Quantitative studies, limitations should be discussed in terms of threats to internal and external validity.
  • For Qualitative studies, limitations should be discussed in terms of rigor, credibility and transferability.

4). References—should be included in accordance with APA style. 
5). Appendices including data collection instruments when possible, interview protocols, recruiting, or advertising documents, informed consent forms, etc. Use your sample dissertations and Argosy dissertation guide to help you in writing your consent forms. Please note you should
 not have any formal permissions at this point, but should include a page with a description of what will be included for the proposal (ie permission from schools etc). If measures are not yet available provide a description of potential measures.


All written assignments and responses should follow APA rules for attributing sources.

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