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Task 2a

girl writing in book by tree
For Task #2a, you will prepare a research proposal that addresses a question of relevance to your work, implement your research plan, prepare a written research report, and present your research findings to the class (worth 50 points). There are three deliverables: 1) research proposal (15 points), 2) research report (25 points), and 3) research presentation (10 points).

Stage 1 - Planning (Deliverable = research proposal)


Any good research study starts with a good plan or proposal.  Indeed, to obtain external funding for research, you almost always have to submit a research proposal that will be peer reviewed before funding is awarded. 

You will prepare a 10 -15 page research proposal with an attached IRB application. Proposals exceeding 15 pages will not be accepted.

It is important to keep the feasibility of your research proposal in mind as you develop it. After all, you will implement this plan as part of this task.

Your research proposal should have the following components:

  1. Introduction - An interesting, concise statement of the problem you wish to investigate.
  2. Purpose of the Study - A clarification of why this study is being conducted with special attention to how your study is a socially responsible investigation.  
  3. Literature Review - A brief review of related studies and theory (you can use the articles from Task 1 here plus others that are relevant).
  4. Methodology - A description of the design, data collection methods, and analysis procedures.
  5. Timeline - An illustration of critical events and dates for carrying out and reporting the study.
  6. IRB Application - Completed form for approval of your study by UGA's Human Subject Office (see http://www.ovpr.uga.edu/forms/human.html).
  7. References - APA formatted.
Stage 1 is worth 15 points.  This is due October 12.

Assessment Rubric*
*modified from rubric designed by Dr. Fitzgerald

Criterion Low Medium High
All components were included (introduction, research question/purpose statement, literature review, methodology, timeline, IRB application references).

Weight: 40%

Subtract up to 2 points for each missing or incomplete component


Report reflects sound principles of research, is socially responsible, and is feasible

Weight: 40%

Subtract up to 2 points per problem

  • Properly applies research skills learned in this course
  • Feasible within time frame of course
Proposal is clear and professionally presented
  • Mechanics
  • Visual design
  • Technological implementation
  • Referencing

Weight: 20%

Deduct .1 for minor errors, up to .5 for blatant spelling, grammar, citation errors; up to 1 point for major visual errors or tech problems


  • Figures or tables are legible, attractive
  • Tech aspects are correctly applied and not overdone
  • Mechanics are error-free
  • References are complete, traceable, honest
Total (out of 15)
You may resubmit if your score is below 10. If you do so, please include all graded components from before.
. . .

Stage 2 - Implementing and Reporting (Deliverable = research report)


Stage 2 of Task 2a involves conducting your study (e.g., collecting data and analyzing it) and writing a report of your research.  The specific methodology that you are using in your study, e.g., experimental methods, qualitative methods, or some other design, will entail different activities. We will be exploring different methodologies in class and through the readings throughout the semester.  

Your research report should have the following components:
  1. Statement of the Problem - An interesting, concise statement of the problem you have investigated.  This section also clarifies the goal of your research. 
  2. Theoretical / Conceptual Framework - A clarification of the theories underlying your investigation.  (This section and the next, literature review, are often interwoven.)
  3. Literature Review - A brief review of related studies that guided your research.
  4. Methodology - A description of the design, sampling, data collection methods, and analysis procedures.
  5. Timeline - An illustration of critical events conducted during your study.
  6. Results - A presentation of the data collected during your study. This section often involves tables and figures that portray or summarize your data.
  7. Interpretation/Discussion/Recommendations - An fair and balanced interpretation of the data, discussion of its implications, and recommendations for practitioners and further research.
  8. References - APA formatted.
  9. Any appendices that you may wish to include. 
Your research report does not have to be a written document per se.  For example, you may wish to present your report using a website if you wish.  The important thing is that it communicates with the intended audience. 

Although it is not a perfect match for every research report, some of the criteria in this instrument may help you in judging the quality of your report: Critiquing a Research Report Checklist.

Stage 2 is worth 25 points. 

Report Assessment Rubric

Statement of the Problem
Gives poor or confusing explanation of the problem.
Gives vague explanation of the problem.
Gives adequate explanation of the problem, but may be rambling, verbose, or lack some details.
Presents a clear and concise statement of the problem.

Theoretical Framework/
Literature Review
Does not include an adequate connection to theory or previous research.
Vague linkages to theory and related research.
Provides an adequate theoretical framework and/or literature review.
Presents a high quality literature review and a clear linkage to the theoretical or conceptual framework.

Methods could not be followed by other researchers, most steps are missing or are confusing.
Some of the methods are understandable; many are confusing and lack detail.
Most of the methods are understandable; some lack detail or are confusing.
Presents easy-to-follow methodology which is logical and adequately detailed.

Data & Results
Data are missing, and the presentation is inaccurate.
Results are somewhat complete, but inaccuracies are evident.
Results are accurate, but the presentation lacks quality.
The data are totally accurate and the presentation is compelling.

Discussion, Interpretation, and Recommen- dations
Presents an illogical explanation for findings and does not address the research questions.
Presents an illogical explanation for findings and addresses few questions.
Presents a logical explanation for findings, but interpretation has minor flaws and recommendations are limited.
Presents a compelling interpretation of the results and makes great recommendations.

Grammar & Spelling
Very frequent grammar and/or spelling errors.
More than two errors.
Only one or two errors.
All grammar and spelling are correct.

Does not adhere to APA guidelines.
Follows APA guidelines, but there are many errors.
Follows APA guidelines, but there are a few errors.
Follows APA guidelines with no errors.

Report handed in more than one week late.
Up to one week late.
Up to two days late.
Report handed in on time.


Stage 3 - Presenting your research (Deliverable = research presentation)


Stage 3 of Task 2a involves presenting your research study in class.  

Your research presentation should have the following components:
1. an introduction to the background, goal, research questions, and methods of your study,
2. a brief summary of the related literature,
3. the results of your investigation,
4. discussion of the meaning and implications of your results, and
5. recommendations and future research directions.

Most presenters choose to use PowerPoint to present their studies, but you can use alternative media such as a website. 

Stage 3 is worth 10 points. 

Presentation Assessment Rubric

Organization and Presentation
Audience cannot understand presentation because there is no sequence of information.
Audience has difficulty following presentation.
Student presents information in logical sequence which audience can follow.
Student presents information in logical, interesting sequence which audience finds compelling.

Slides or Website
Poorly designed presentation. Student uses superfluous graphics or no graphics.
Student occasionally uses graphics, but they rarely support text and presentation.
Adequate presentation. Graphics relate to text and presentation in most instances.
Excellent presentation. Graphics explain and reinforce screen text and presentation.

Student's presentation has four or more spelling errors and/or grammatical errors.
Presentation has three misspellings and/or grammatical errors.
Presentation has no more than two misspellings and/or grammatical errors.
Presentation has no misspellings or grammatical errors.

Student mumbles, incorrectly pronounces terms, and speaks too quietly for students in the back of class to hear.
Student's voice is low. Student incorrectly pronounces terms. Audience members have difficulty hearing presentation.
Student's voice is clear. Student pronounces most words correctly. Most audience members can hear presentation.
Strong delivery. Student uses a clear voice and correct, precise pronunciation of terms so that all audience members can hear presentation.

Eye Contact
Student reads all of report with no eye contact.
Student occasionally uses eye contact, but still reads most of report.
Student maintains eye contact most of the time but frequently returns to notes.
Student maintains eye contact with audience, seldom returning to notes.