Research Guide

Research Methods
For Studying Psycho-Social Change Programs

James Neill
Last updated:
05 Jul 2006

How to get Research Going

Research Method Resources

Who Me?  Do Research?

Yes, you can do research.  Believe it or not.  The only real requirement is being able to find a question you want answered.  This is by far the hardest part in research and most people donít progress beyond this point.  Once you have a question, these qualities are important in determining whether research happens and, if it does, the quality of the research:

  • motivation
  • ability to put ideas forward
  • willingness to receive feedback on oneís ideas and make appropriate changes
  • ability to think analytically and creatively
  • political savvy
  • project management skills
  • self-direction and self-discipline
  • having an applied context in which to conduct research
  • willingness and readiness to make use of technology

Support & Mentoring

Especially when starting out, having the support or mentorship of a knowledgeable person makes for greater learning and better quality research.  Hook up if you can with someone who has had previous research experience, possibly through a university or other organization.  Share ideas regularly, and get the person's critical feedback on your ideas and research as it progresses.  Research is not really research unless its subject to peer review and public scrutiny, and so its important that your work is supported from an early stage by someone who can help to guide your efforts.