Undergraduates’ conceptions of research methods learning

Balloo, Kieran ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1745-4653 (2017) Undergraduates’ conceptions of research methods learning. In: 2017 Biennial European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction (EARLI 2017), 29 Aug - 2 Sep 2017, Tampere, Finland.

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Abstract

A range of conceptions held about research methods learning have previously been identified. The current study aimed to examine in-depth shared conceptions among groups of undergraduate students, since individual conceptions are unlikely to exist in isolation. Utilising Q methodology, which links both quantitative and qualitative methodologies to uncover the subjective viewpoints that a group of individuals hold towards a particular domain, participants ranked statements reflecting different conceptions of research methods learning. Ranks were then factor analysed and seven distinct profiles of student conceptions were identified, labelled and described in qualitative detail: Big Picture Students (Aspiring Researchers), Big Picture Students (Non-Aspiring Researchers), Other-Focused and Superficial Learners, Calm and Dismissive Learner vs. Anxious and Concerned Learner, Unconvinced Students vs. Converted Student, Side-choosing Researchers, and Relaxed and Reductionist Learners. A significant association was found between these profiles and the students’ year of study; final year students displayed more ‘big picture’ views of research, while first year students showed a more superficial understanding. There was also a significant association between profiles and performance on research assignments; students who exemplified ‘big picture’ narratives performed better than those who exhibited superficial perspectives. Findings are considered in terms of how some conceptions take longer to develop and appear to be more beneficial or problematic to hold than others.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 10 Mar 2022 05:05
Last Modified: 30 May 2022 01:12
Uncontrolled Keywords: Research methods learning; undergraduate students; learner profiles
Fields of Research (2008): 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170103 Educational Psychology
13 Education > 1301 Education Systems > 130103 Higher Education
Fields of Research (2020): 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5201 Applied and developmental psychology > 520102 Educational psychology
39 EDUCATION > 3903 Education systems > 390303 Higher education
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/46287

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