From Research Topic to Research Questions


How to choose a research topic


you will run into barriers, problems you can't solve

no deadline can be a problem for people

the farther you live from campus can mean the longer it takes to compelte your dissertation

(because you don't see your major prof in person, less guilt, it's not on the top of your mind)

so: set agreement with your major prof that you will contact or submit something to him/her every 2/3 weeks, even if it's just a progress report


Where to find inspiration:


must have a backup plan if you are using surveys, in case you don't get enough data


(share your research interests in class)


A research question is a well-crafted question that will guide the systematic planning of research. Formulating your questions precisely enables you to design a study with a good chance of answering them. The more specific, the better. Your whole design & study will depend on the question(s).



Must be:


Research questions must be able to be answered with data

Must not involve value judgements




potential variables in my study:


sample research questions (class exercise):


In your dissertation lit. review, generally EACH PARAGRAPH should have AT LEAST ONE citation.


Rule of Thumb: you should have about as many references as how many pages your dissertation is long.