A few weeks back, I posted “Examining the Purpose of a Dissertation Literature Review,” in which I outlined the Doctoral Research Forum I am participating in. I think the concept that the University of Akron College of Education faculty are pursuing could lead to a valuable educational experience for doctoral candidates. Additionally, I commend my UA profs because this type of collaboration between course instructors is a largely unheard of at UA. However, I have been struggling throughout the forum assignments. This is largely due to the fact that each of the past four weeks we have been required to read a scholarly article, post a written response on the Springboard (UA’s LMS) discussion forum and then respond to at least one of our colleagues responses.

This week, the game changed a bit and student participants were asked to provide feedback. From the Discussion Forum posting:

This week’s discussion is about the Research FORUM in general.  The FORUM instructors greatly value your feedback.

1. What do you think about content and process of the FORUM is effective?
2. What suggestions do you have for improving the FORUM?
3. What other comment, observations, questions, etc. would you like to share?

The following is my response. I’m sure it will be well received by some, and not so popular with others. Because of this, I titled the SUBJECT of my forum topic “Disclaimer: Honest feedback. Personal opinion.

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I’m creeping closer towards the completion of my doctoral coursework. This means that the beginning of my own educational research study and dissertation writing is not to far from my future. As a part of my coursework at the University of Akron, I’ve been participating in a Doctoral Student Research Forum that includes students from three research method classes (Data Collection Methods, Advanced Statistics and Advanced Qualitative Methods) and their respective College of Education faculty.

In a fairly progressive undertaking by UA College of Education faculty, Dr. Kristin Kosksy, Dr. Susan Kushner Benson, Dr. Xin Liang, Dr. Jennifer Milam and Dr. Sandra Spickard Prettyman, doctoral students from 5 different sections of those classes have been assigned to small discussion groups. From the course requirements we were provided, the purpose of the forum is to:

…provide College of Education doctoral students with an opportunity to work with other doctoral students and faculty in a collaborative and collegial manner while exploring and reflecting upon contemporary research topics.

Most recently, we have been reading and discussing articles relating to the purpose of a dissertation literature review. We began with David N. Boote’s and Penny Beile’s Scholars Before Researchers: On the Centrality of the Dissertation Literature Review in Research Preparation. From there, we moved on to Literature Reviews of, and for, Educational Research: Commentary on Boote and Beile’s “Scholars Before Researchersby Joseph A. Maxwell.

Wordle - Role & Purpose of Literature Review

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