Deakin University & Griffith University program

Why Research Matters

Welcome to this Deakin University unit, AER730: Why Research Matters.

Why Research Matters

This program is part of the Sustainable Development and Humanitarian Action degree offered by Deakin University

Explore the importance of research.

Imagine a world without robust evidence, where governments carry out policy based on hunches and manufacturers release products without testing.

This program will further develop your research skills so you will be able to solve problems on a global scale and make evidence-based decisions. This program will use several case studies highlighting research at two of Australia’s leading research institutions, Deakin and Griffith Universities to help you understand the real-world application of research methods and techniques.

During the program, you will:

  • Use data to make evidence-based recommendations that address real world problems
  • Assess various research approaches and perspectives in broadening your understanding of a problem
  • Practise common research techniques including interviewing, coding and statistical analysis
  • Develop a framework for ethical governance of a research project
  • Plan the implementation of your own research project

You will be assessed on your development of a feasible research proposal, which you will work towards throughout the program by keeping a portfolio of potential research topics, approaches and refined research questions.


1 course

Delivered by expert academics

Deakin University is Australia’s eighth largest university with more than 53,000 students from more than 100 countries studying online and on-campus. With world-class teaching and research, Deakin produces sought-after graduates poised to make a real difference in the world.

Griffith University was created to be a different kind of university—challenging conventions, responding to trends and pioneering solutions. Ranking in the top 3% of universities worldwide, Griffith hosts 50,000 students from 130 countries across our five campuses in South East Queensland and online.

Who will you learn with?

Christopher Stevenson

Christopher Stevenson

Chris is an epidemiologist and biostatistician with a particular interest in evidence based health policy. He is a passionate teacher with a commitment to blending teaching with cutting edge research

Nick Barter

Nick Barter

Nick is an academic with a focus on developing frameworks to allow corporate strategists to realise sustainable strategies and expanding online education to as many learners as possible

Matthew Clarke

Matthew Clarke

Professor Matthew Clarke is Head of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at Deakin University, Australia. He has more than two decades experience working in the development sector.

Learning outcomes

At the completion of this unit, successful students can:

  • Identify why your research matters
  • Evaluate the roles of quantitative methodologies and theoretical frameworks in your research
  • Define a researchable problem
  • Apply ethics to your research project
  • Create and communicate a research plan.