Unit 1 | What is academic research and why is it important?


In the first unit, we look at the role of academic research and its importance to your learning. We will discuss qualitative and quantitative methods for research, outline what makes a good research question and why, and discuss the difference between primary and secondary research. Within this unit you will start to develop skills in searching for and identifying useful research articles, and we will discuss academic vs. grey literature. You will also start to identify your own research interests/topics and begin to generate one or more examples of a research question that would align with your research interests.

Learning Activities and Assignments

  • Read the required readings for the unit, and view the required videos.
  • Complete Activity 1: Padlet check in.
  • Complete Activity 2: Reflecting on your academic writing and writing an academic essay.
  • Complete Activity 3: What makes a good research question.
  • Reflect on your research interests.
  • Complete Activity 4: Padlet discussions on 1) quantitative/qualitative/mixed methods research, and 2) primary and secondary research
  • Complete and submit Assignment 1: Role and Importance of Research (Individual) and prepare your Pechakucha 12×20 presentation for residency.

Activity 1 | Padlet check-in

Find or take a photo that represents how you feel about your experience with research and academic writing. Upload the photo to the Unit 1 Activity 1 Padlet and include a 100-150 word (max) summary of why you chose the photo. View your colleagues posts and comment on at least two. Be sure to put your name on your padlet submission.

Activity 2 | Reflection on your academic writing

Reflect on your own writing. Please review the following two resources (available through the Writing Centre): How to write an academic paragraph and citing resources APA style. Then, go to the Writing Centre and review the resources there. When you have completed your reviews and reflection, please write a short academic essay (between 250 and 750 words) that outlines your conclusions with regard to your academic writing. You must include at least one direct quote, and at least two other in-text citations. You should begin your essay with an introductory section and end with a concluding paragraph. Your work must include a reference list which is in addition to the word count. You are expected to adhere to APA guidelines.Please upload your essay to the Activity 1.2 dropbox in moodle.

Activity 3 | What makes a good research question

Based on your readings, videos you’ve viewed, and online research, share, through your blog, one or two key things (point form) that make a good research question. This will be explored further during residency.

Activity 4 | Padlet research discussions

Post a response to each of the two questions below in the appropriate padlet. Review at least five responses for your colleagues and comment on at least two in each padlet. Be sure to put your name on your padlet submission.This will be explored further during residency.

Padlet 1 question: What is the difference between qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods research?

Padlet 2 question: What is your understanding of the differences between primary and secondary research?


Assignment 1 | Role and Importance of Research (individual)

Complete and submit Assignment 1. Please also prepare a PechaKucha 12×20 presentation drawing from your assignment. You will develop 12 slides and speak for 20 seconds per slide (total of 240 seconds – 4 minutes). Your presentation should focus on ‘why research is important’. You will present your PechaKucha to your colleagues at the start of the residency.