research methods 8 discussions

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This is 8 Discussion. I need one answered every 3 days.

Each week, you will be asked to respond to the prompt or prompts in the discussion forum. Your initial post should be 75-150 words in length.

Discussion 1

Research in Daily Life

The book discusses research as systemic investigation that is designed to produce public knowledge. This involves collecting data, analyzing results, and discovering or proving knowledge. With this in mind, how does research affect your life? 

In this first forum, introduce yourself and describe what brings you to Grantham and how this course might affect your program and future career. Then identify two ways that research affects your daily life. 

After your initial post, respond to at least two classmates by discussing how their chosen examples of research compare to your own and whether they also affect your life. How is research all around us?

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Discussion 2

Ethical Research

Our Week Two material explores the rules for ethical research. After completing the assigned chapters and lectures, identify an event from the past when research did not follow ethical guidelines. For your opening thread, share a link to the event you found and explain what happened. Then discuss why ethical research is so important. Why do scientists need to be extra careful with research that uses human subjects? Do ethical guidelines restrict the boundaries of research? Feel free to explain by using the textbook or by doing additional research online. Remember to cite your sources.

When responding to your classmates, consider their reasoning for ethical research. Is there or has there ever been any situation when morality can be abandoned for a really good research project? Why or why not?

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Discussion 3

Science Reporting

This week’s assigned reading went over the value of specific types of data. For this week’s discussion forum, look through your favorite news sources and identify an article on science reporting. Your example should summarize a scientific article by explaining the goal of the project, its findings, and the reporter’s take on the project. Remember to cite your source.

After providing this summary, analyze the project itself. Are there any weaknesses in this experiment? Use the textbook to discuss potential problems in sample size, variables, collection errors, assumptions, or bias.

While responding to classmates, compare their findings to your own. Why should we be extra wary of science reporting in the news?

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Discussion 4

Validity and Reliability 

Every project must ensure the data and conclusions are both valid and reliable. Validity refers to the accuracy of the measurement in a test; reliability refers to the stability or consistency of scores. In other words, a test must measure what it says it does (validity), and it must be consistent in its reports (reliability).

For this week’s initial thread, share an example of a test or experiment and discuss the validity and reliability of that test. Your example can come from your daily life, from reading the textbook or looking for online examples, or even from a hypothetical situation.

When responding to your classmates, suggest at least one way to improve either the validity or reliability in their proposed example. Remember to demonstrate the difference between validity and reliability in your posts this week.

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Discussion 5

Survey Data

Surveys try to measure opinions about populations relating to political beliefs, religious views, diet and exercise, and all manner of lifestyle choices.

For this week’s discussion, search for an online poll. If you don’t have a polling source in mind, you can explore the Pew Research Center, any news source, or fivethirtyeight.com. Share the data revealed by your chosen poll, and draw three conclusions to explain the poll’s results. When drawing conclusions, consider what the poll measures, what big the sample size was, or how trustworthy the results are. Try to use the textbook to look for ways to assess the results.

When responding to your classmates, compare their findings to your own and provide them with feedback on the accuracy of their conclusions. For example, do you find the explanations to be credible? Is there another way to interpret the data? Were the questions poorly written? This discussion forum will help you practice analysis for the final project, so ask yourself questions about each other’s findings.

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Discussion 6

Interpreting History

Historical interpretation can be particularly difficult, because history never exists in a vacuum. Each event is part of a larger historical arc. In addition, historical events are interpreted differently by individual people. As a result, each event can be interpreted differently depending on context.
 

For this week’s forum, choose a moment in history that interests you. Using a reliable source, summarize the event in 3-5 sentences. Then propose how that event could be interpreted truthfully as a positive development in human history, or a negative event in human history. If we can honestly interpret it both ways, what does that mean about truth in historical research?

When responding to classmates, identify different groups of people who might benefit from one or the other interpretation. Groups could be organized by politics, religion, gender, urban versus rural, American versus international, or any other category. Keep in mind the question of how this tells us more about “truth” in historical research.

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Discussion 7

Academic Literature

When we speak of research, we often think about laboratory conditions. However, research affects all careers and all walks of life, including business, administration, politics, education, customer service, and criminal justice.

For this week’s forum, search online for the name of a research journal that might be important to your program at Grantham or your future career. Share the name of that journal and describe what kinds of articles, research, and data it publishes.

When responding to classmates, compare their example to your own and try to suggest specific ways you or your peers could use the information that journal to become better at our future jobs. How is research important to our specific careers? It might be useful to mention your major or career goals during this week’s forum.

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Discussion 8

Peer Review and Reflection

Share your Final Project presentation here. Write a 3-5 sentence summary of your project and attach the submission into the discussion forum thread.

When responding to your classmates, draw from concepts throughout this course to analyze their presentation. Feel free to ask each other questions, and try to monitor your own thread in order to answer the questions anyone poses to your own presentation.

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