December 1, 2021
This workshop is for STEM practitioners across formal and informal K-to-gray settings who want to learn qualitative research methods to broaden their educational change and innovation skillset. The workshop is based on the ProQual Institute for Research Methods that aims to build capacity, confidence, and community in STEM education research.
The faculty will introduce a Problem-led method to designing qualitative studies (the “Pro” in ProQual), which centers STEM practitioners’ experience and honors their passion and commitment to impact. The approach starts with a pictorial mapping exercise that prompts participants to think deeply about and sketch out the social system surrounding their research interest. The process guides participants to identify the systems’ actors, elements, connections, and structures, with the view to selecting a “Social Reality Under Investigation (SRUI).” Akin to a “research object” in technical studies, the SRUI delineates the focus of the researcher’s direct empirical efforts and forms the basis for subsequent research design decisions. The resulting map is also a powerful boundary object that can be used to negotiate a shared understanding of the developing project in a research team. Grounding the research design in the definition of a specific SRUI provides a novel, experience-near way to selecting suitable theoretical frameworks, methods, and methodologies. The facilitators will demonstrate this approach through practical examples from real research projects. The workshop will then introduce a Research Quality Framework (the “Qual” in ProQual) as a tool and language to guide the investigation of the SRUI from ideation to propagation.
You can find the video recording here.