Hi everyone, my name is Courtenay Telford. I have an Honours Bachelor of Arts in history and Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations at the University of Toronto. I am in the LIS path. I am interested in government documents, reference, and special libraries.
I found the readings to be very helpful with how to go about conducting research. I liked how Luker talked about being open to different research methods instead of just one set method. I think that mixed methods is a valuable way of conducting research instead of just doing quantitative or qualitative because both methods have their weaknesses and by mixing the two one can compensate for that. In regards to the salsa dancing title I find that it suits how Luker presents the material. Salsa dancing has a few basic steps that are built upon and Luker does the same in her book by laying out the fundamentals in regards to research that can be developed upon.
Knight discussed the importance of private writing before it becomes public and the different methods that one can use to help them develop their research. Private writing entails one’s thinking process and how they will go about answering their research questions and more importantly establishing one before they go about deciding what methods to use. Knight provides good examples of how to develop a research question and shows what questions are good and which ones are bad, as well as, provides an explanation. Knight makes an important point about reading is key in helping to develop a research question. A person who does not know what they are particularly interested in will look at general topics then from those topics decided what he or she is interested in, which will make the research more specific and a research question will begin to emerge. Once the research question is established the person has to make sure it is clear and has a purpose that is meaningful.
When I usually come up with ideas while researching I write them down in a notebook or binder if I am not at the computer at the time. Usually I write down my thoughts surrounding my idea and why I feel that way about it. When I am reading books or articles I normally write summaries of the main ideas and arguments presented, as well as, recording what chapters or pages I got the ideas from. I like to have an outline or map mind of what I am intending to write or go with my research. I agree with Knight that it is important to have colleagues look over one’s work before it is fully finished because it provides feedback on how one can improve their work.