Major Assignment 1

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Major Assignment 1: Developing a Research Topic for a Qualitative Study

The first step in qualitative research is to identify a problem related to a topic of interest. As you begin to consider your topic, researching peer-reviewed articles is critical to helping you find any gaps in the research that will transform your topic into a viable research problem. Three of these articles will comprise your Annotated Bibliography for this Major Assignment 1.

Using the topic or research idea you choose in Week 1 Discussion 2, you will begin your work on Part 1 of this Major Assignment 1. You will begin your search for literature to find three articles that will inform your topic of study from a scholarly perspective.

To prepare for this Assignment:

  • Review the Major Assignment 1: Developing a Research Topic for a Qualitative Study Assignment Overview and Guidelines and follow the format and guidelines in this document to create your Major Assignment 1.
  • Review the Walden Writing Center website related to problem statements.
  • Review the Walden Writing Center websites related to annotated bibliographies and consider how you will need to create your annotated bibliography for this Major Assignment.
  • Attend the Walden Library Lab webinar and consider how you will need to use the Library to assist you in your research. Use the Course Guide and Assignment Help found in this week’s Learning Resources for further information.
  • Use the Course Guide and Assignment Help to search and select three articles related to your personal topic of study and include one literature review or meta-analysis article, one theory article, and one research article. The research article may either be from a quantitative or qualitative perspective. This will begin your annotated bibliography that will contribute to your topic of study for the final Major Assignment 1.

For this week, you will work on Part 1 of this Major Assignment.

Part 1

  • Create a title page for your Major Assignment 1. Use the Major Assignment 1: Developing a Research Topic for a Qualitative Study Assignment Overview and Guidelines for proper formatting of your paper.
  • Write a problem statement based on your topic of study. Develop a 1- to 2-paragraph statement that is the result of a review of the articles you located on your topic.
    • Briefly describe the phenomena you are interested in studying.
    • Briefly summarize the key findings or what is understood about this phenomena based on the three articles you reviewed.
    • Briefly identify the “gap”—what do you see as an important, relevant, next step in learning more about this topic that would be appropriate for a qualitative study.
  • Include your Annotated Bibliography section.

Part 2

  • Write a purpose statement using terminology of qualitative research. The purpose statement should contain:
    • A statement using the following template: The purpose of this qualitative study is to[choose one: explore, describe, understand, explain] the meaning/experience/culture/stories of [phenomenon of interest] in [population/setting].
    • A justification of why the purpose of your study is suited for the qualitative approach in terms of:
      • The phenomena you choose
      • The “fit” with a constructivist epistemology and ontology
      • The relevance of the naturalistic setting or context to the phenomena of interest
  • Write a research question using terminology of qualitative research. (Note: This could be the same research question you created in your Discussion 1 for this week ONLY if it applies to your topic of study for this Assignment.)

    The research question should incorporate and mirror the purpose statement using the following template: What is the meaning/experience/culture/stories of [phenomenon of interest] in [population/setting]?

  • Include your updated Annotated Bibliography section.

Based on your knowledge of reflexivity, explain your relationship to the problem; and the issues of bias and positionality to be addressed. Include a brief description of the setting and possible sources of data.

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