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Fostering Active Learning in Research Methods Courses Through the Use of Survey Research Projects
Unformatted Document Text:  4 reduce individual effort when working in groups, as compared to the individual effort they would be likely expend when working alone (Williams and Karau 1991). “Free riders” are also commonplace since individual benefits are not necessarily proportional to the amount of individual effort expended (Albanese and Van Fleet 1985). Moreover, group member perceptions of excessive social loafing and free ridership may create discontent and have a detrimental effect on group morale and cohesion (Mulvey and Klein 1998). Project Design and Active Learning Tasks Specific tasks for the proposed research project are outlined below and discussed in the following sections. These tasks directly align with the particular research methods subject matters as we cover them in class. In that respect, they serve as “break out” groups that require practical application exercises relating to textbook principles and concepts. Each research group has a dedicated discussion forum that serves as a student- student and instructor-student communication hub. Table 1: Active Learning Tasks 1. Initial Set-up and Group Meeting - Group assignment - Topic selection 2. Theory, Concepts, and Variables - Research question workshop - Conceptualization, operationalization, hypotheses workshop 3. Data Collection - Questionnaire design and development workshop - Institutional Review Board and Ethics workshop - Draft questionnaire due - Revised questionnaire due

Authors: DeWitt, Jeff.
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reduce individual effort when working in groups, as compared to the individual effort
they would be likely expend when working alone (Williams and Karau 1991). “Free
riders” are also commonplace since individual benefits are not necessarily proportional to
the amount of individual effort expended (Albanese and Van Fleet 1985). Moreover,
group member perceptions of excessive social loafing and free ridership may create
discontent and have a detrimental effect on group morale and cohesion (Mulvey and
Klein 1998).

Project Design and Active Learning Tasks
Specific tasks for the proposed research project are outlined below and discussed
in the following sections. These tasks directly align with the particular research methods
subject matters as we cover them in class. In that respect, they serve as “break out”
groups that require practical application exercises relating to textbook principles and
concepts. Each research group has a dedicated discussion forum that serves as a student-
student and instructor-student communication hub.
Table 1: Active Learning Tasks
1. Initial Set-up and Group Meeting
-
Group assignment
-
Topic selection

2. Theory, Concepts, and Variables
-
Research question workshop
-
Conceptualization, operationalization, hypotheses workshop

3. Data Collection
-
Questionnaire design and development workshop
-
Institutional Review Board and Ethics workshop
-
Draft questionnaire due
-
Revised questionnaire due


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