SOC234 2018 Lab1 – Mon 4.30pm

Dear SOC234 Lab,

Please respond to the following question with a reply-post of no more than 250 words:

‘What makes a good and bad research question?”

Remember that you will need to post your reply before Lab 1, and don’t forget to look at both the instructions for Tweeting and Blogging and the Lab and Lecture Guide, both up on Moodle.

Thanks and good luck, Roger.

#S234UOW18  #Lab1  #Mon430

Posted in SOC234 - Social Research methods, UOW.

22 Comments on SOC234 2018 Lab1 – Mon 4.30pm

Lorelie Blee said : Guest Report 2 months ago

Firstly, I argue that there is no such thing as a generally ‘bad’ research question, as any information on sociological phenomena can still be invaluable to the researcher (so long as it is new and relevant). However, research questions can be poorly designed for the perspective that the researcher is attempting to focus on. If the scope of the question is too broad, it can be impossible for the researcher to achieve the particular answer they are looking for. For example, a researcher posing the question “What is the link between socioeconomic status and suicide?” will provoke a plethora of answers about the social phenomenon. This is not a ‘bad’ research question, however it is too big to be narrowed down to focus on one particular aspect, thus poorly designed. It is also not suitable for a research project- it does not focus on one place, target population and sociological perspective. As Ezzy (2010) states, the research question should nail down “exactly what it is that he or she wants to know”. A more thorough research question may be, for example, “How does socioeconomic status have an impact on suicide rates within Wollongong?” A good research question is precise and to the point. It must contain “the key idea that the research seeks to investigate or explain” (Walters 2010, pg. 13). A good research question needs to thoroughly address the key social phenomenon, as well as the target demographic that the research will be aimed at. It considers the methodology that will be used to analyse the answer and ethics concerning participants. Of course, it must also be of value to society and be able to be used to obtain new data and insights to social phenomena that did not previously exist. References: Ezzy D 2010, ‘The research process’ in M Walter (ed.), Social Research Methods, 2nd ed, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Vic, pp. 65 Walters M 2010, Social Research Methods, 2nd ed, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Vic, pp. 13 #S234UOW18 #Lab1 #Mon430

Ryan Forsyth said : Guest Report 2 months ago

Walters (2010 pg. 13) said that a good research question will "state the major aim of the research in question form, specifying the key idea that is being investigated and/or explained, whilst also identifying the key concepts of the research." As such, a good question will clearly identify these important ideas and concepts in order to build a study that gives us the desired answer to the question. A bad question will make it hinder the ability to do this and likely fail to achieve the ultimate goal of research which Patulny (2018) suggests is to "identify phenomenon, discover its dimensions or characteristics or specify the relationships between the dimensions." and initially stated by Fawcett and Downs 1992:4. A good research question will aid this process by being specific is typically helpful to be concerning subject matter that has relevant background research and allow for data to be easily gathered and quantified. Obviously a bad research question will obviously not do these things and therefore make the research far more difficult

Anna Lewis said : Guest Report 2 months ago

Social research questions can ultimately never be clearly labeled as bad however, there are many key points that decide whether a research questions is deemed strong and of a high quality versus one lacking clarity and preciseness. (Ezzy, D. 2010, pp.65). A high quality research question will clearly “state the major aim of the research in question” (Walters, 2010, pp.13) as well as the key ideas and concepts into which the research is precisely about. This narrowing down of concepts and ideas will help to ultimately strengthen the research question and provide clarity for the readers. However, although having a clear and narrow research question is good, it can also be bad if the question is deemed too narrow. This means that it would become quite difficult to gather sizeable results and information thus making it hard to make practical conclusions. (Patulny, 2018). On the other hand having a research question that is too indefinite and unfocused will lead to the researcher finding it extremely difficult to answer the question, as there will be no exact topic or key idea to be explored and researched. A research question is made to be precisely answered and having a question that is too broad will make that challenge merely impossible. A research question must also identify whether it is exploratory, descriptive or confirmatory. This will determine and identify the sole purpose of the research. (Walters, 2010). In conclusion, there are many factors, which determine the quality of a social research question, and ultimately the level of how clear the question is to understand will determine how easy the question will be to answer. References: Ezzy, D. 2010, ‘The research process’, in Walter (ed.) Social Research Methods, 2nd edn, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Victories, pp. 61-86). Patulny, R. 2018, ‘Introduction – Social Research and Research Questions’, SOC234, University of Wollongong, viewed 3/3/2018. #SOC234UOW18 #Lab1 #Mon4:30

Nicole Mastroianni said : Guest Report 2 months ago

The aim of a research question is to aid in exploring a specific phenomenon and state the general purpose of the research. (Patulny 2018) states that ‘Research designed to generate theory seeks to identify a phenomenon, discover its dimensions or characteristics, or specify relationships between the dimensions. ’A good research question will enable the ability to guide your research. Having interest in the topic is beneficial as ‘research is formulised by curiosity’ (Patulny 2018.) Concern in your research will ensure clear, specific findings that are understood which is ideal for learning. Research should be current to avoid struggles in finding multiple sources for background knowledge. Ensuring the question can be analysed within a realistic time frame will avoid stress. ‘Research questions state the major aim of the research in question form, specifying the key idea that the research seeks to investigate and or explain and also identifying the key concepts of the research.’ (Patulny 2018.) A bad research question will be broad and unclear whereas a good research question will ‘look at a specific aspect of a problem and are much more fine-tuned, really getting at something.’ (Patulny 2018.) If your question involves a subject that everyone already knows a lot of information about it automatically becomes boring and invalid. Keeping in mind that it will be difficult to find sources related to the topic if it is outdated or non-interesting. You will find that results will show to be worthless and inconsistent and will not allow for further studies. Patulny, R 2018, ‘Social Research Methods’ PowerPoint slides, SOC234, University of Wollongong, Viewed 28 February 2018. Steely library NKU, 2018, Developing a research question, online video, 4 January, Steely library NKU, Viewed March 1, 2018. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QauomrFcrXk

Ashleigh Balmer said : Guest Report 2 months ago

Research is designed to discover and investigate concepts, to help us understand and learn about a specific issue (Patulny. R). The question will test your hypothesis. In the research the public's privacy is very important, and no harm must be mad to anyone involved in the experiment. A good research question will state the aim of what the researcher in trying to find out (Patulny. R). The question must be clear, precise and important. A research question that you are interested in will help you stay motivated to find the correct information and finish the research. A good topic in your research question is one that you already have basic knowledge about. Research that needs multiply types of sources to answer it including both qualitative and quantitative research will gain the best results (Patulny. R). An open-ended question should be used to gain more insightful data not just yes or no answers. A bad research question often ends up with results that are not accurate and can be answered in just a few words (Patulny. R). An answer that is also purely the researcher’s opinion, and lack ethics. A question that has more than one question could end up with only half the research question answered. A good research question will lead to getting the best results. The question will help the researcher to uncovering the correct information. The question will help you decide the type of data that will be collected and analysed. The results will be reliable and other will be able to learn from it. References Marino. M, 2014, Research Questions, https://www.slideshare.net/usfbear/research-questions-54752257, Viewed 3rd March Patulny. R, 2018, week 1, powerpint slides, SOC234, University of Wollongong. Viewed 3rd march,https://moodle.uowplatform.edu.au/pluginfile.php/1231170/mod_resource/content/5/SOC234Week1-Intro2018.pdf

Mikayla Levis said : Guest Report 2 months ago

A good research question addresses the researchers theoretical framework and the concepts or ideas set out in the research. Research questions are supposed to be a guide for the next steps in the research process. A good question should allow the researcher to effectively communicate the purpose and essential aims of their research to their participants. In order to produce a good research question, the researcher needs to have an interest in the topic of desired study. Bad research questions can be quite convoluted and don’t provide a guide for researchers and therefore can incur confusion in both participants and the researcher.

Elena Kantarovska said : Guest Report 2 months ago

#S234UOW18 #MON430 Research is full of opportunity, directly as a result of what research is defined as, being the enquiry into and study of a given topic in order to establish truth and facts. (Landrum & Garza 2015) Because of all this opportunity, the range of what an individual can research is entirely vast and broad. (Ketchen, Craighead & Cheng 2018) However, with such a large range of opportunity to research from, a research question has to be very concise and particular and thus causes research questions to be done and written well but also gives ample opportunity for a question to be written badly which then therefore translates into a poorly written and unreliable study. So, what makes a good research question? A good research question has the aim of gaining insight into a research topic. Especially in qualitative data research, all of the work is being processed on humans, who are all entirely different and can trail off topic. Therefore, a good research questions must be clear, not only this but direct and concise. It must be specific to lower the margin of error in questioning. (Natalier, 2013) (Patulny, 2018) From this we can gather what would make a research question, the opposite of clear and concise, being vague and short. When a question is short and vague, it gives an individual ample opportunity to trail off topic which again, is undesirable. (Walter, 2013) Following this system of concise and clear questioning will in turn, gain better insight into the particular research topic which will translate to a more accurate and respected research paper. (264 Words) Reference list: Ketchen, DJ, Craighead, CW & Cheng, L 2018, ‘Achieving Research Design Excellence Through the Pursuit of Perfection: Toward Strong Theoretical Calibration’, ‘Journal of Supply Chain Management, vol. 54, no. 1, pp 16-22 Landrum, B, & Garza, G 2015, 'Mending fences: Defining the domains and approaches of quantitative and qualitative research', Qualitative Psychology, vol. 2, no. 2, pp. 199-209. Natalier, K (2013) “Chapter 2 - Research Design” in Walter, Maggie (ed.) (2013) Social Research Methods, 3nd Edition. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press, p25-49 “Patulny R 2017, ‘Lecture 1 Social Research and Social Questions, recorded lecture, SOC 234 Social Research Methods, University of Wollongong, viewed 26 February 2017, https://echo360.org.au/lesson/G_f03df8a0-de8c-40b5-941d-ac2a639b673e_4128e023-d83f-42cf-83d1-43a119c658cb_2018-02-26T15:30:00.000_2018-02-26T16:25:00.000/classroom#sortDirection=desc Walter, M (2013) “The Foundations of Good Social Science Research” Chapter 1 in Walter, Maggie (ed.) (2013) Social Research Methods, 3nd Edition. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press, p3-24

Talicia Lees said : Guest Report 2 months ago

Social research is an attempt to understand the what, why, who, where, and how of social life by gathering evidence, data, public opinion and personal accounts. To conduct social research, you need a research question that relates to an area of the social topic you wish to research. Having a good research question is the first part needed when creating a research proposal, making it extremely important that it's completed appropriately and to a high standard. Often it is one of the hardest parts of research because of how specific it needs to be. It is so crucial that the question is specific to a certain area of the topic, whilst also giving the researcher allowances to expand within the question. A good research question should include the topic and what the study will address and be just narrow enough to allow for interpretation by the reader. The structure of a good research question needs to enthuse those involved, it should be clear and concise in its purpose of the study.  A good research question needs to explore more than just why particular events, or series of patterns happen. Simply asking the question of why that is, broadens the points of interpretation making it difficult to generate quality research. However, hypothesizing the reason why, going on to testing the proposed theory through different research methods creates a more effective and efficient research method (Patulny, 2018). Alternatively, research questions may be flagged as bad if they are too broad or too narrow. A research question that is too narrow will mean that little to no answers may be generated. One that is too broad may mean that those researching the topic gain too much irrelevant information, clouding the study.  

Mikayla Reid said : Guest Report 2 months ago

According to Maggie Walter, social research endeavours to answer questions individuals face about the society in which they find themselves. Walter describes how good social research begins with an effective and important research question and a good research question should stem from a real world, real people social problem. Social research also involves an organised, well formulated research plan which should be inspired by the research question. The lecture covered the importance of social research covering a specific aspect of a social problem and in order to do this a question must be limited and refined. Kristin Natalier also describes how a research question drives any social research. According to Natalier the development of new social theories and knowledge and debunk known social assumptions in the world and in order to do this a researcher must begin with a strong research question. The lecture covered the importance of identifying a theory and that is a social researchers job to question or to test this theory. Everything about a social research project should come back to the original aims of the research question, if a question does not have a solid aim or purpose then the rest of the study will become insufficient in answering or contributing to any social phenomena. Natalier also provides poor research generation processes which include creating a question which is too long and complicated for the resulting research to come to a useful conclusion. If a research question is limited to only one type of method the research is then compromised.

Xanthe Catt said : Guest Report 2 months ago

Ethical research need to include a clear understanding of the research process where commitment to the construction and development of the project is seen through critical analysis of the literature. The vast range of methods within research are vital and can include in-depth interviews, focus groups and data. Due to the social nature of social research, human experience can make research complex as people are often unpredictable and ambiguous, and due to societies being ever changing our results may no longer be applicable in the near future. Other challenges and considerations include the 'Hawthorne effect' and cultural assumptions wherein ignorance towards a cultural barrier may make for presupposition. The key aims within social research are to identify, explore and look for social patterns and social meaning in order to uncover inaccurate assumptions made about our world. There are three core levels of social research which include exploratory, descriptive and explanatory research. Due to the nature of social research, it often does not fall neatly into one category, but rather uses all to form holistic explanations for social phenomenon. When researching, one’s methodology explains the world view in which the research is undertaken. Their stand point and social position helps to create their methodology and influence their theoretical framework. When creating a methodology key components include social position, axiology, epistemology and ontology. These also influence the research method taken by the individual. Data collection and analysis comes at the end of the research project, and includes empirical data and social theory. Ultimately all methods taken will have positives and negatives, but it is key to remember no matter what method is chosen, it has to relate to the topic and question posed.

Elena Kantarovska said : Guest Report 2 months ago

Research is full of opportunity, directly as a result of what research is defined as, being the enquiry into and study of a given topic in order to establish truth and facts. (Landrum & Garza 2015) Because of all this opportunity, the range of what an individual can research is entirely vast and broad. (Ketchen, Craighead & Cheng 2018) However, with such a large range of opportunity to research from, a research question has to be very concise and particular and thus causes research questions to be done and written well but also gives ample opportunity for a question to be written badly which then therefore translates into a poorly written and unreliable study. So, what makes a good research question? A good research question has the aim of gaining insight into a research topic. Especially in qualitative data research, all of the work is being processed on humans, who are all entirely different and can trail off topic. Therefore, a good research questions must be clear, not only this but direct and concise. It must be specific to lower the margin of error in questioning. (Natalier, 2013) (Name, 2018) From this we can gather what would make a research question, the opposite of clear and concise, being vague and short. When a question is short and vague, it gives an individual ample opportunity to trail off topic which again, is undesirable. (Walter, 2013) Following this system of concise and clear questioning will in turn, gain better insight into the particular research topic which will translate to a more accurate and respected research paper.

Mikayla said : Guest Report 2 months ago

According to Maggie Walter, social research endeavours to answer questions individuals face about the society in which they find themselves. Walter describes how good social research begins with an effective and important research question and a good research question should stem from a real world, real people social problem. Social research also involves an organised, well formulated research plan which should be inspired by the research question. The lecture covered the importance of social research covering a specific aspect of a social problem and in order to do this a question must be limited and refined. Kristin Natalier also describes how a research question drives any social research. According to Natalier the development of new social theories and knowledge and debunk known social assumptions in the world and in order to do this a researcher must begin with a strong research question. The lecture covered the importance of identifying a theory and that is a social researchers job to question or to test this theory. Everything about a social research project should come back to the original aims of the research question, if a question does not have a solid aim or purpose then the rest of the study will become insufficient in answering or contributing to any social phenomena. Natalier also provides poor research generation processes which include creating a question which is too long and complicated for the resulting research to come to a useful conclusion. If a research question is limited to only one type of method the research is then compromised.

Rochelle Nash said : Guest Report 2 months ago

A ‘good or bad’ research question can be determined by many factors. Good research questions tend to be clear and concise, whilst being specific in the area of study. For example, asking ‘why’ a particular event happens isn’t very effective, but hypothesising a reason why and then testing that theory though qualitative and quantitative research is a much more effective method. (Patulny, 2018) A good research question also needs to be ethical. Ethics, being the established set of moral standards that govern research behaviour, is an essential component to research (Walter 2013, p. 5). Maintaining a high standard in regards to ethics involves the consent, privacy, anonymity and safety of the participant. A solid hypothesis can always be tested and refined in a spiral process, rather than a ‘looping’ process which does not progress. (Patulny, 2018) Good research questions often involve a theoretical paradigm, the most common being Durkheim’s functionalist/positivist perspective, which involves the role of theory: to order, explain and predict facts. Others involve minority groups, such as the Feminist perspective (sees gender as fundamental) and the Indigenous perspective (directed by Indigenous values). (Patulny, 2018) Finally, a good research question would contain a fairly equal balance of qualitative and quantitative data. Quantitative is important for comparing groups, examining associations and finding connections in data. Qualitative is essential for detailed accounts of human experience, contextualised results, and provides an in-depth analysis of complex issues in family and cultural systems. (Patulny, 2018) #S234UOW18 AND #Mon430

Joshua Iglesias said : Guest Report 2 months ago

An academic paper outlines an argument of key ideas and concepts relating to a specific field of research. Even before the response is written or the research is conducted, the researcher needs to construct a research question to respond to. Whether the question be for the purpose of qualitative research, or quantitative research, both good and bad research questions propose different outcomes. The development of a good research question within qualitative research includes focusing on a key idea and constructing the question around a central idea to analyse an area of focus. Particularly, when developing good research questions for qualitative study, the questions need to be “stated clearly, are researchable and involve concept related to theory or an applied context” (Bradley 2001, p. 574). The requirement of a good researchable question means that the question needs to be broad but not too broad, clear and directive so that the research reflects the key concept being addressed within the research. When it comes to quantitative research, researchers take more rigorous approaches in their question construction. The development of a good research question within quantitative research requires a sense of narrowness and directivity. Quantitative research questions focus merely on the “predictions the researcher makes about the relationships among variables (numbers)” (Creswell 2009, p. 132) allowing the development of questions that focus on hypotheses which employ statistical procedures. Comparatively, bad research questions steer away from the idea of both broadness and narrowness providing a sense of indirectivity and ambiguity. The approaches to both areas of research allow the construction of good research questions to evolve focusing on broadness, clarity and directivity for qualitative research and focusing on narrowness, rigorous and procedural approaches for quantitative research questions. Bradley, D.B. (2001), Developing research questions through grant proposal development, Educational Gerontology, 27, pp. 569-581. Creswell, J 2009, ‘Research Questions and Hypothesis’, (ed.), Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches, Sage, Los Angles, pp. 129 – 143.

Jaiden Connell said : Guest Report 2 months ago

What makes a good and bad research question? Rigorous social research, understanding context and empathising with a variety of world-views determine the outcome of a social research question. Research of a question or area of social phenomena needs a careful and structured process, a strong methodology. Through this process, the researcher needs to consider his/her standpoint to either immerse yourself into the context and culture of the social phenomena, or take a step back from your own ideas and perspectives of society (Walter 2013, p. 16). A strong understanding of the topic is the foundation of effective research. Along with a strong understanding, comes a solid framework to conceptualise theories and data gathered as research (Walter 2013, p.18). The question needs to be able to highlight the key ideas and concepts of the research. In addition to this, the question needs to be clear and concise. A question that is too narrow would only allow a yes or no answer. A question that is too broad or ambiguous will lead to many irrelevant tangents that either a) will not answer the question, or b) switch the focus of the key concepts and ideas. Therefore, precise research methodologies, a wealth of knowledge on the concepts and ideas that the question will address and reviewing your stance on worldviews will determine how good or bad a research question is. Walter, M 2013, “The Foundations of Good Social Science Research” Chapter 1 in Walter, Maggie (ed.) Social Research Methods, 3nd Edition. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press, p3-24

Lucie Galvin said : Guest Report 2 months ago

Undergoing the task of creating a research question is not simple, nor should it be merely brushed over as a ‘thing’ that just needs to be done. In order to produce a good research question one must consider firstly, is the topic of choice relevant and important. Once satisfied with this step one much ask whether the question is clear. Is it focused and does it cover the relevant aspects to allow a reader to understand the researchers position and interest of the topic? This is achieved by stating the type of research, is it exploratory, descriptive or an explanatory research design (Neuman 2014, p. 38). For example, if I were interested in looking at ‘how guide dogs influence peoples lives’ then my question would be focused on a descriptive research and therefore have elements of descriptive language. Furthermore, once the type of research is stated, one must be able to distinguish the theoretical paradigm the research question falls under (Patulny 2018), for example, the topic of ‘a guide dogs influence’ could be considered a ‘conflict perspective’. This is important in a good research question because, as Babbie (2005, p.32) explains, paradigms provide the logical framework within theories. However, on the other hand, bad research questions can be made and they lack theoretical paradigm, have unclear intentions with a broad topic, which does not allow for a sense of direction. #SOC234UOW18 #MON 430 References: Babbie, E. (2005) The Basics of Social Research, Pearson Longman, Belmont, CA. Neuman, LW 2014, Social research methods: qualitative and quantitative approaches, Pearson New International Edition, Harlow, England. Patulny, R 2018, ‘Lecture 1: introduction’ PowerPoint slides, SOC234, Wollongong University, viewed 26 February 2018.

Rebecca said : Guest Report 2 months ago

What is the significance of a good or bad research question? Why does it matter? According to Albert Szent- Gyorgyi “Research is to see what everybody else has seen, and to think what nobody else has thought” In context research existing in any form of scientific basis can be categorised to be either good or bad. In order to effectively conduct scholarly research, the ideal outcome is to be able to test one or more hypothesis through both observational and experimental studies in order to successfully answer the research question. In theory research's main purpose is to answer a scientific question in an obscure manor that is dependable with pre-existing knowledge. Research is contingent on its ability to be performed by not only by valid scientist but still conclude with a valid result. With success good research is controlled with clear interpretations and consist of a well-designed experiment with a clear focus. As supported by Walters (Patulny, 2018) research questions need to highlight key ideas and concepts in relation to proving and or disapproving of a testable hypothesis which are most commonly derived from a theory. However, a research question stemming from pre-existing knowledge, theory or concept does not constitute its validation as being ‘good’. In addition, research questions that question and outcome or challenge an uncompromising theory does not fundamentally mean it is ‘bad’. Thus creating an open ended argument which can be questioned by many different perspectives. Patulny, R (2018) “Introduction – Social Research and Research Questions,” SOC234, University of Wollongong, accessed 25/2/18. Szent-Györgyi, A. (1957). Bioenergetics. New York: Academic Press INC.

Ashliegh Heritage said : Guest Report 2 months ago

‘Good’ vs ‘bad’ sociological questions. Why does it matter? It matters because the difference between the two have monolithic effects on the research undertaken and the results given. Although there is no magical formula to producing a good research question (Robson 1993: 25) there is a basic scaffold that can be followed to increase the chances of creating a good question. A researcher needs to write a question that is specific, with consideration for the ethical and political implications of their research. Researchers are part of the political process (Ezzy: 74) meaning, they can ultimately effect the sample populations’ data through the way a question is pitched to them. A research question such as ‘why men get paid higher salaries?’ is too ambiguous and may be interpreted in a multitude of ways; or hint ideas to the sample with this leading question. The ambiguity in the above example will likely not produce relevant responses from the sample. A good research question is one that has been constantly evolving, developing from a broad topic (such as gender pay gap) into a much narrower concept (such as comparing gender pay in similar companies with like job positions). This occurs through concentrating on past research studies of similar concepts, until a ‘gap’ of knowledge is unearthed. From there, the question begins to take a much more concise and clear form, with limited ambiguity; hence producing a good social research question. (238 words) Ezzy, D 2010, ‘The Research Process’, in M Walter (ed.), Social Research Methods, 2nd ed, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Vic., pp 61-86. Robson, C, 1993, Real World Research: A Resource for Social Scientists and Practitioner-researchers, Oxford, Blackwell.

Diashley Aldikomi said : Guest Report 2 months ago

What makes a good research question is the ability to highlight the aim of the research in question form, specifying the key idea(s) that is being investigated and/or explained, whilst also identifying the key concepts of the research. (Walters, 2010, p13.) And also as “the function of research is to generate or test theory” (Fawcett and Downs 1992: 4), a good research question should include sociological theories and concepts that relate to the topic that is being researched. It is importance to also have a strong understanding of the topic as Ezzy (2010, p66) states, the theory or paradigm that a researcher uses will shape the way in which he or she understands the research topic. By creating a research question that is strong in foundation and looks at a specific aspect of a topic, the research question becomes a ‘good research question’. As stated by Dr Patulny in the lecture on Monday 26/02/18, the more specific a research question is, the better the outcome. When narrowing the question, it makes researching a topic easier as data can be obtained concisely and can be grouped by specificity instead of obtaining data that are too broad on the spectrum and that cannot be grouped due to the varying answers. A bad research question ignores the points mentioned above. Bad research questions focus on topics that are too broad, do not state the aim of the research, and that do not refer to theories and concepts.

Jaqueline Quintanilla said : Guest Report 2 months ago

To outline specific sociological concepts and theories is what makes an effective social research question. As mentioned in the lecture, a good question must address ‘specific aspects of a problem’ (Patulny, 2018) as this produces informative conclusions when the question prompts the researcher’s social concepts to be ‘limited in scope’. (Walter 2013, p.27) by addressing exact key social concepts in the question. This is evident when a question uses an inductive approach by reading existent information to identify concepts that have not yet been considered for study. As Douglas Ezzy states, the best qualitative studies come from questions with a sociological curiosity in examining the current subjective meanings and experiences of research subjects to ensure that ‘theory and methodology are compatible’ (Ezzy 2010, p.66). It is this ‘data to hypothesis’ (Patulny 2018) approach that is crucial to finding relevant theoretical perspectives for these issues. Contrarily, as Kristin Natalier suggests, vague or broad questions that ‘conceptualise all of the core concepts’ (Walter 2013, p.28) are why they fail to form a solid foundation that is accurate and coherent by overcomplicating data collection. A poor question is evidently ignorant when it is wanting to learn what is already known which, fails to create an insightful starting point because it risks generalizations that replicates the research of others. Additionally, an attribute of a successful research question makes use of the grounded theory method to ‘emphasize the emergence of concepts’ (Bromnick 2003, p.210) to differentiate it from pre-existing questions. Hence, the foundations of good questions are established in specificity and hindsight to avoid the errors of bad research questions that lack direction and clarity for study. Bell, J.H. and Bromnick, R.D., 2003, ‘The social reality of the imaginary audience: A grounded theory approach’, Adolescence, vol. 38, no.150, p.205. Natalier, K 2013, “Chapter 2 - Research Design” in Walter, Maggie (ed.) (2013) Social Research Methods, 3nd Edition. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press, p25-49 Patulny, R (2018) “Introduction – Social Research and Research Questions,” SOC234, University of Wollongong, viewed 03/01/2018. Ezzy, D 2010, 'the research process' in M Walter (ed.) Social Research Methods, 2nd edn, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne, Vic., pp.61-86 Walter, M 2013, “The Foundations of Good Social Science Research” Chapter 1 in Walter, Maggie (ed.) Social Research Methods, 3nd Edition. South Melbourne: Oxford University Press, p3-24

Taylah Todoroski said : Guest Report 2 months ago

It has been established that one cannot write an excellent dissertation or thesis without first coming up with a good research question. It is, therefore, crucial to start thinking about a dissertation with a research question rather than a topic sentence. A good question is the one that establishes what the researcher intends to learn about a topic. Such a research question, along with the research methodology helps to guide the choice of data to be collected in the research process. Formulating a good research question means that nearly half of the dissertation has already been completed. Despite the significance of a research question in the research process, it has been established that there are attributes that can make it either good or bad. Of particular significance, a good research question is the one that draws on background knowledge of a given topic. A good research question is, however, supposed to be substantial and original (Grand Canyon University, 2017). It is also required to be clear and suitable for investigation. A bad research question, on the other hand, is the one that is too narrow, easy to answer, and ambiguous. A bad research question is also too broad and unfocused, as well as too objective. Grand Canyon University. (2017). "Writing a Good Research Question." Hemmings, S. & Hollows, A. (2018). "Formulating the Research Question."

Hamish Starr said : Guest Report 2 months ago

Having a good or bad research questions entirely governs the quality of the research undertaken by the researcher. This means it is vital for a researcher to create a ‘good’ research questions. But what are the qualities of a good research question? According to Walters (in Patulny 2018), “Research questions state the major aim of the research in question form, specifying the key idea that the research seeks to investigate and/ or explain and also identifying the key concepts of the research.” (2010 p13). As also stated in the lecture, the question needs to be clear and concise, whilst also remaining not too broad, nor too narrow. If the question is too broad, then the research will follow and it will hard to draw conclusions from the research, making the question hard to answer. Likewise, if it’s too narrow, it will be hard to gather an appropriate amount of results and in turn, hard to draw conclusions from them. Therefore, a happy medium needs to be found when formulating a research question. If this is achieved, whilst also following the conventions from Walters, it should aid in formulating a good research question by any researcher, and therefore, allowing them to undertake good research. Patulny, R (2018) “Introduction – Social Research and Research Questions,” SOC234, University of Wollongong, viewed 03/01/2018.

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