2. Develop research questions and purpose statements

Refers to the capacity to recognise a problem  and identify the core issue/s. This requires strong research area knowledge, as well as understanding of research practices and methods.

1 April 2015: Today I met with my second supervisor, Linda, to discuss my topic. This was a really productive conversation with her providing direction for my research including understanding that political research in Australia is two fold: Political science done by Australians; Political science on Australia. The second category is where I fall, however I am also the first by default! She also directed some of my research in relation the Dawkin’s era. In relation to my topic she suggested looking at Jonathan Potter in relation to rhetoric construction for my topic. She is comfortable where the topic is at for the moment but recognised it was still shaping (well indicated that it is likely to change again).

13 April 2015: While discussing research methodology with Patrick I raised my topic. We had a very sound discussion about the use of the word ‘congruence’. Patrick pointed out how this suggests empirical research rather than theoretical. He suggested juxtaposition would be better.

21 April 2015: Discussed the topic revisions with David in my week 8 review. He suggests “What are the impacts at the intersection of policy intent, business expectation and commodification in higher education?” It’s funny because Patrick talks of research triumvirates (ontology;epistemology; methodology in research: thesis; anti-thesis; synthesis in dialectics : theoretical; empirical; methodological problems) and now David has clearly articulated my own triumvirate. However, I just googled its meaning and originally it related to three powers to rule a government. Now it has even more appeal. I am looking at the power of higher education. Who has the power? Policy; business; commodification?

19 May 2015 – Today I attended a session on how to write the research proposal (PLC Research Proposal Session 19 may). This was a great session and actually my second time there. When I attended last semester I found the session quite confronting and difficult. This time I was more able to understand the process and content. This demonstrated to me how I have actually improved since last semester. I am more able to engage with the research process and to articulate and shape my question.

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