Writing a research paper is one of the most challenging tasks you may have to face as a student. You will need to select a meaningful topic, choose the right methodology and find study participants. It is often hard to plan your time properly and give yourself enough time to do the research and write your paper. Sometimes you will find your supervisor is too busy to be that helpful. Here are some of the research challenges you may face and how to deal with them.
Selecting a topic
You need to start your research with the selection of a topic. Choosing it carefully is important as you may choose a topic that’s too general or too specific. You need to take into consideration what resources you have available to do the topic justice.
Read everything you can about the topic, as you will need a theoretical framework to support it. It must be a topic that can sustain your interest because you will work on it for an extensive period. Looking for solutions is a way to offer something new. It’s good to look for a niche where you can make a difference. Listening to input from experts can help you to fine-tune your topic.
Deciding on a methodology
One of the challenges in research is deciding on the right methodology. Your methodology is the procedure you use to conduct your research.
Experts suggest that you shouldn’t choose between a quantitative or qualitative approach until you decide on the purpose of the study and your research questions. What methodology will answer the questions best? Words such as “understand,” “explore,” or “generate” suggest a qualitative approach. Words like “compare” or “correlate" indicate a quantitative study.
You will need to decide who you will collect data from, how you will collect it, and how you will analyze it once it’s collected. You may need to use interviews or focus groups to collect qualitative data. For quantitative data, you may use survey results or test scores.
Get help from a research paper writer
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Finding study participants
One of the research issues you have to face is finding study participants. You can’t be afraid to reach out and leverage the power of networks to find them. “Snowball” sampling techniques involve targeting a particular group and then asking them to recommend others who may be willing to participate. This can work very well. Contacting well-known researchers or mentors in your field may also help you to find participants.
Getting institutions to participate
Sometimes recruiting study participants means you have to go through institutions. They may create obstacles if they think your research is sensitive or controversial. You have to persevere and not stop at your first rejection. You may need to find alternative avenues when doors don’t open for you. Try to form relationships with individuals who can help you to gain access to participants.
Making sense of your data
You need to present your data in such a way that it adds to the body of knowledge that already exists. When looking at qualitative data, you can’t afford to do so with any preconceived ideas. You need to see if any patterns emerge out of the data itself. In quantitative work, you need to account for the biases of individuals taking surveys etc.
The way you evaluate and analyze your data can make your research successful or not. You must support your thesis with enough research and properly cite your sources within the paper and on the reference page.
You are likely to face various research challenges when you have to write a research paper. It can be challenging to choose a topic and a methodology. Finding study participants may not be easy. When it comes to writing the paper, you must present your data in a convincing way that makes an impact. Overcoming all the challenges will require some persistence and determination. You may need to reach out for some help along the way if you want to be successful.
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