research methodology in TESOL
THE area of focus is TESOL, the core text for this subject is Cresswell, J.W. (2005). Educational research. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.
the following is the assesment description:
An important skill for any educator is the ability to access, interpret and critically evaluate the research conducted by others. This task focuses on developing this ability. Locate two research articles (primary sources; hint: look for a methods and results section) that you feel may have educational implications and/or applications in your area of Master’s specialisation (or other area agreed with the Subject Coordinator). Read and evaluate each article separately, considering each of the following points as a guide (note: this is not an exhaustive list of considerations):
! What is the focus of the researcher’s work (i.e. is there a stated purpose? research question? problem?) Does the article provide a sufficient review of previous studies on this topic?
! Does the researcher adopt a design that is appropriate to their research question? Why is it appropriate or why is it not? What sorts of insights does this design (not) permit?
! Are the researcher’s methodological decisions appropriate (i.e., appropriate participant recruitment? appropriate data sources? appropriate data collection methods? are each of these methodological decisions made sufficiently clear? if not, what additional information would you require?)
! Do you agree with the interpretation of results? Why or why not? How do they fit with the methodology decisions made?
On the basis of your critique of these two studies, write an essay that: (1) provides context for this area of study, briefly synthesising key findings and debates (introduction); (2) evaluates each article separately, briefly describing the study (e.g., aim, methods, results, conclusions) and then provides in-depth evaluation of the methods adopted (e.g., strengths, limitations), culminating in an appraisal of the author’s conclusions, as well as the presentation/justification of the educational implications and applications that you see as a result of this study (body text); and (3) a synthesis of these findings to briefly discuss the state of research in this area of investigation, including apparent methodology-based limitations and debates and future research that could address them (conclusion).
PLEASE NOTE: The focus of this task is on the evaluation of methodology, in order to evaluate the utility of published research for informing educational theory, research, practice and/or policy. This requires you to extend beyond simply describing the methods used (although some description of the methods will be required in order to provide explanation for your evaluation), with a particular focus on the methodology (rather than the specific content area). A minimum of 10 scholarly (e.g., credible, reliable) references are expected.