Think of the exercises in the Doctoral Strategies Toolkit as a cross between a w

Think of the exercises in the Doctoral Strategies Toolkit as a cross between a workbook and a journal. The prompts evaluate your understanding of common doctoral-level skills and requirements, expanding your perspective for a deepening level of research. With the twin goal of reflection and improvement, you are encouraged to consider the prompts as a map, logging where you’ve been and where you still need to explore.
In this course, you have read research articles that discussed research methods. In future terms, you too will choose a research methodology to collect data for your future PhD dissertation or DSW capstone study. These are based on quantitative, qualitative, or mixed methods research designs. A research design is the overall blueprint of the study, and it will guide how the research questions, sample recruitment, data collection procedures, and data analysis are conducted.
This week, you examine how other PhD Social Work and DSW alumni have collected data by reading their methodology plans.
To Prepare
Review the Explore Methodologies website found in the Learning Resources.
For DSW students, look at the Methodology section in the DSW capstone study (Section 2) you found earlier in the course.
For PhD Social Work students, look at the Methodology section in the PhD dissertation (Chapter 3) you found earlier in the course.
Tips
Don’t worry about all the details yet. You will be taking research methods courses for a comprehensive examination of research designs. Now, the goal is to think about the ideas you have for your topic and research problem in the context of how you might gather data. Reflect on the choices made by other researchers and look for the connections between what they wanted to answer and how they sought the answer.
Keep your Doctoral Strategies Toolkit active after this course! Keep a record of the key takeaways from each course, align your goals with your skill development, or record the questions you still have. Customize it to be your toolkit. Remember, doctoral studies can seem like a new language. Think of this as your phrase book to reference when you need a refresher on foundational concepts.
By Day 7
In 3–4 sentences, describe your initial impressions about collecting data for your DSW capstone or PhD Social Work dissertation. For example, consider these questions:
How do you think data collection may relate to the research topic you have in mind?
Had you previously considered the relevance of data collection to your topic?
In 1–2 sentences, identify a concern you may have about data collection for your future DSW capstone project or PhD Social Work dissertation.
Describe three lessons you larned about research methodology and explain how you can apply them in conceptualizing your DSW capstone project or PhD Social Work dissertation.

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