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Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in STEM
Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in STEM

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2.1.2 Significance of the aim and research questions

Significance of the aim implies asking the following questions (Mueller, 2018): why does the research matter? Will people think it is important? To whom may it apply, and how will the audience benefit? How will the SoTL research make a difference to teaching and learning practice? How will it contribute to the broader SoTL environment? Creating a case for significance for the project’s aim and research questions establishes intrinsic motivation for completing the research, but also clarifies the rationale for a project’s contribution to SoTL practice.

As per the stages of a SoTL inquiry that you explored in Session 1, once the research questions are firmed up, the next stage is to plan the research design. One of the key aspects of research design is to choose research methods for data collection and data analysis.

Activity 4 Refining your research questions

Timing: Allow approximately 10 minutes

Think about the various strategies for refining the research questions that you have encountered in this session so far.

  • For the SoTL inquiry that you are designing to conduct in the near future, reflect on these strategies and consider refining your research question(s). List the updated set of research question(s).
  • If you are not currently planning to conduct a SoTL inquiry, reflect on the strategies and list the ones that have influenced your thinking the most for SoTL research.
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