Planning Research Projects

       A successful research project requires careful planning. To get the project done on time and within the available budget it is important to think through the essential resources and tasks. If you leap into action on a research project without foresight you may end up wasting a lot of time by running into impasses that could have been avoided with adequate planning.

       What could derail a research project? Lack of time, not enough money, the inability to recruit participants, travel restrictions to politically sensitive areas, failure to secure Institutional Review Board (IRB) approval, and many more things.

       The most important tool during the planning stage is your brain. Many tasks and topics must be considered as you ponder a research project. Helpful tools are available that range from a trusty pencil to expensive project management programs; but ultimately, there is no substitute for your own cognitive effort. The best qualitative researchers are deep and creative thinkers.

Copyright, Christopher Hahn, 2008

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