Published on February 23, 2008
Why do PR research? •Knowledge •To set goals and objectives •Plan PR campaigns •To succeed
Research steps - topic relevance • Not the first idea. Need to be motivated. • Usually a significant personal issue • Natural interest • Avoid overly-familiar topics • Observation
Step 1: choosing a topic •Addresses the assignment •Narrowly-defined •Touches your life •Bring insight •Not overdone •Lends itself to questions •Can be surveyed •Can hold focus group
Sample topics • Privatisation of water in WA •Smoking bans in Fremantle café strip •State liquor laws liberalisation •Uranium mining in WA •Construction of airport to city rail link •Staffing crisis in school canteens •Protection of Kakadu from uranium mining •Changes to watering laws (including bore restrictions) •Housing (rental) crisis •Perth multi-purpose stadium
Framing the questions • Try to develop several questions relating to the topic •Choose best one for the overall goal •Develop speciﬁc questions
Lit review • Locate background info. • Journals, media •Be wary of online material
Develop the statement • Freewriting •What do I think about this issue? •Focus on ideas •Test on friends •Off topic - rephrase
Next week: writing the report Part 1 - INTRO Identify research problem Review literature and derive hypothesis Part 2 - METHOD Design surveys (pilot first) Conduct surveys Part 3 - RESULTS/DISCUSSION Analyse results Interpret findings
Layout/content •Title •Abstract •Introduction – literature review and hypotheses •Method – participants, materials, procedure •Results •Discussion – outcome, theoretical context, limitations, implications •References •Appendices (if any)
Title Summarise the main idea of a report in 10-12 words. Salient - omit words that are unnecessary or words that can be reasonable inferred from the study.
Abstract •Appears first, written last •Clear and concise. •Summarises essential elements of the study and should be a single paragraph, no more than 120 words and contain: - The problem - what was done - what was found - what is means •No statistics in abstract •Inverted pyramid
Intrduction •Introduce the reader to the area of research. •Make it clear what you are reporting. • Ddefineany concepts or ter ms whic h the reader may be unfamiliar with.
Lit. review Outline the area of investigation Refer to existing theories (A supposition [uncertain belief] or a system of ideas intended to explain something) Define unfamiliar concepts or terms
Hypothesis •A statement ofrelationships between two or more variables •Propose a tentative solution or outcome, based on a theoretical foundation. •Requires support from existing literature. Can’t be a guess. •Must be clear & and unambiguous •Consistent in wording throughout the whole report.
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