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Good Research Questions
Good Research Questions are:
- Relevant - They arise from issues raised in the literature or in practice
- Manageable - You will have sufficient time and resources to access the data required
- Substantial - You are not simply copying questions already addressed
- Clear and simple - Muddled questions are likely to generate muddled data
Developing Research Questions
“Well-crafted questions guide the systematic planning of research. Formulating your questions precisely enables you to design a study with a good chance of answering them.” (Light, Singer, Willett, By Design, 1990)
Once you have selected an initial topic, you need to find a question that clearly identifies what you hope to learn. To begin:
- Write down what you already know or don't know about the topic.
- Using the information you wrote down, develop questions you'd like to answer when doing your research.
- Use probing questions such as why? how? what if? should?
- Avoid questions that can be answered with yes or no.
Forming a Research Question