'Describe how you would plan and undertake an investigation into why some of
this College's students do not complete their degree courses.' (You have been
given only 100 to finance the study; and one term's sabbatical.)
Define the variables in the given title
After a Research Statement has been formulated it is very important that the
researcher defines any variables within it. A variable is any word whose meaning
may be ambiguous or which could have several different meanings. This is a
crucial stage in the planning process as a vague title renders any results at
the end of the research without true meaning.
In this case, the Research Statement is the given title Describe how you would
plan and undertake an investigation into why some of this College's students do
not complete their degree courses.' Within this Research Statement there are
several variables : college's', students', complete' and degree courses'.
These variables will be defined as follows:
`College's' We will take this to mean students at Royal Holloway
and Bedford New College, University of London.
`Students' Undergraduates on a first degree (excluding post
graduates and so on).
`Degree courses' The course for which the student originally registered.
By defining the variables above there can be no confusion as to the meaning of
the Research Statement. This process also helps the researcher to focus on the
group of people that he wishes to study.
Decide on the purpose of the research
Having defined the variables in the Research Statement, the researcher now needs
to focus his attention on the purpose of the research, and consequently lay down
the Research Objectives. This part of the planning process allows the researcher
time to consider what he hopes to achieve from the research and ensures that the
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"Methods of Social Investigation." StudyMode.com. 10, 1999. Accessed 10, 1999. http://www.studymode.com/essays/Methods-Social-Investigation-4091.html.