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This content is taken from the Deakin University & Griffith University's online course, Why Planning Your Research Matters. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 9 seconds CHRIS STEVENSON: Congratulations, you’re at the end of the course, and it’s time to celebrate.

Skip to 0 minutes and 13 seconds NICK BARTER: By now, you should have a very good outline of your research proposal, sitting, ready to go.

Skip to 0 minutes and 19 seconds CHRIS STEVENSON: Let’s spend a moment to look over everything you’ve achieved. To design your proposal, you’ve generated a research question that will allow you to make a genuine contribution to solving a real-world problem without presupposing a solution. If that’s not enough, you’ve managed to make it succinct, but inclusive.

Skip to 0 minutes and 39 seconds NICK BARTER: You then made a plan for looking strategically at the important research in your field, and used it to craft an appropriate research approach, to discover something no one has ever known before.

Skip to 0 minutes and 51 seconds CHRIS STEVENSON: Then you worked hard to think through the ins and outs of your project, to generate a research methodology that will really answer the questions that you had and stand up to scrutiny.

Skip to 1 minute and 3 seconds NICK BARTER: If that’s not enough, you’ve planned the way to measure the true value and impact of your research.

Skip to 1 minute and 9 seconds CHRIS STEVENSON: Finally, you’ve put it all together in a research proposal. Many people dream of it, but you are one of the few who do.

Skip to 1 minute and 19 seconds NICK BARTER: You should be truly proud of making it this far.

Skip to 1 minute and 21 seconds CHRIS STEVENSON: We really hope to see you in the next course, where you can have Nick and I and experts look over your research proposal and give you constructive feedback. Well done.

Skip to 1 minute and 32 seconds NICK BARTER: Well done.

Course wrap up

Who would have thought it?

Right this very instant, you have a solid plan to get you going on that research project you’ve always wanted to undertake.

If you’re still with us at this stage and you’re like most of your peers, it’s likely you’ve moved from a general interest in research or a vaguely defined desire to start a research project to being right on the verge of actually doing it.

When you really think about it, we’ve explored, investigated, practised and reflected on quite a lot if you’ve joined us for some, or all, of our ten weeks together so far.

During Why Research Matters, we asked the big question ‘why does research matter?’ We discussed how research can solve problems, made evidence-based decisions, thought about some of the most important paradigms that we encounter during research and made our first steps towards identifying a research problem.

Why Experience Matters looks at qualitative research. We asked ‘why does experience matter?’ The course investigates the truly transformative power of stories to shape (and shake up) our understanding of the world. It was also the first course that made you think long and hard about the research approach that might best fit in with your research problem.

In Why Numbers Matter, we looked at the way in which quantitative research can focus our minds. We explored the power of numbers to help us understand the world with accuracy and precision and to solve problems in a way that is empirical and measurable. We worked hard to pinpoint a research question that pointed your way forward to a rigorous quantitative research design.

Next up was Why Ethics Matter, where you developed an understanding of the paramount importance of ensuring that your research not only helps people, but does no harm. You evaluated the ethical issues that your research might present and figured out how you were going to monitor them.

Which brings us to this course. Throughout this course we’ve applied everything you’ve learnt over the others.


  • reflected on your aims,
  • chosen your research question, performed a miniature literature review
  • selected your theoretical lens
  • identified an appropriate research approach
  • specified how you will identify, collect, manage and analyse your data (or, at least, how you will figure out how to do this)
  • put together a plan to monitor and evaluate whether or not your research is a success
  • planned how you will share your results with the world.

So, there’s only one thing left to do. It’s time to put it all together and share your proposal.

This is a big achievement. Well done. Stay with us for the rest of the course to find out how you can have this proposal assessed by experts and have it recognised for credit towards a master’s degree.

Your task

Sit back and get comfortable.

Close your eyes and take a few moments to reflect on how far you’ve come.

Express how your interest in research turned into ambition and how you are feeling now that you are so close to proposing a genuine research project.

Share the moment by congratulating your fellow learners and critical friends.

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This video is from the free online course:

Why Planning Your Research Matters

Deakin University