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In this unit, we will embark on a formal exploration of the applied research project proposal and digital research consulting project proposal. You are encouraged to strike a balance between the value of your research question and your ability to develop a proposal, which, in realistic terms, you are capable of carrying out.

The learning activities in this unit are intended to help you:

  • reflect on your own proposal intentions;
  • assess the components of a good research proposal; and
  • think about how you will share your work with a wider community.

You will not be undertaking the “traditional” thesis route but might be interested in undertaking one of the following:

  • application of knowledge to the field;
  • development of instructional practices or resources;
  • evaluations of practices or the resources;
  • critical essays;
  • critical analyses of problems or issues;
  • policy analysis or development surveys;
  • creative works;
  • documentary work; and/or
  • other types of projects that are open to negotiation with your course instructor.

Learning Activities and Assignments

Activity 1 | Your Research Topic

This class activity will open the course discussion and you will begin to articulate your research topic. Using Padlet, in a maximum of 150 words, or with an equivalent video, describe which research topic(s) interest you and why – please post by Thursday night of week 1. Please review at least five or your colleagues posts and comment on at least two by Sunday night of week 1.

How to record a video in Padlet

Activity 2 | Disseminating Research

This topic is designed to get you thinking about what you want to do with your research. In a post on your blog, identify one or two ways in which you might disseminate your research once it’s completed. This could be in an academic journal, a professional publication, a web site, a conference presentation, a professional development workshop, and so forth.

Thinking about dissemination at an early stage can help you clarify your reasons for undertaking a particular project. Identifying how you want to share your work can help you decide who your audience really is.

You need to consider what you have to do in order to achieve your dissemination goals. For example, if you want to publish, what are the journal or publication requirements? If you want to create a technology evaluation tool for teachers, how would you ensure that it gets into their hands? If you’re conducting a comparative analysis of educational software, how will you make your findings public so that others can benefit from your work? If you want to design a tool for measuring the effectiveness of student support services at a college, how will you present the tool and the findings?