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The Essential Guide to Doing Your Research Project

The Essential Guide to Doing Your Research Project

Fourth Edition
  • Zina O'Leary - The Australia and New Zealand School of Government
Additional resources:

April 2021 | 456 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
This practical book sets out how to approach each stage of your research project, from choosing a research design and methodology to collecting and analysing data and communicating your results – and showcases best practice along the way.

Packed with pragmatic guidance for tackling research in the real world, this fourth edition:

  • Offers support for diving into a project using digital data, with how-to guidance on conducting online and social media research
  • Empowers you to confidently disseminate your work and present with impact
  • Helps you map out your research journey and put a plan in place with decision trees in every chapter
  • Challenges you to be reflective and critical about the research you consume and undertake

Zina O'Leary's detailed and down-to-earth approach gives you the research skills and momentum you need to successfully complete your research project.

Chapter 1: Taking the Leap into the Research World
Chapter 2: Setting Up and Getting Started
Chapter 3: Developing Your Research Question
Chapter 4: Undertaking Credible and Ethical Research
Chapter 5: Crafting a Research Proposal
Chapter 6: Reviewing Literature
Chapter 7: Designing a Research Plan
Chapter 8: Understanding Methodologies: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches
Chapter 9: Understanding Methodologies: Mixed Approaches
Chapter 10: Understanding Methodologies: Evaluative, Action-Oriented and Emancipatory Strategies
Chapter 11: Identifying and Selecting Samples, Informants and Cases
Chapter 12: Primary Data: Surveys, Interviews and Observation
Chapter 13: Secondary Data
Chapter 14: Online Generated Data
Chapter 15: Analysing Quantitative Data
Chapter 16: Analysing Qualitative Data
Chapter 17: The Challenge of Writing Up
Chapter 18: Final Hurdles

The writing style is appropriate to all levels and is totally accessible to the students I teach. Overall, this is a very welcome book for research.

Louise Fenton
University of Wolverhampton

Very user-friendly and interactive – an easy read for my students.

Ushi Ghoorah
Western Sydney University

I have added this to the Dissertation Module, for the BA Education Studies. A very good guide in completing research.

Mr Mark Warner
Education, North East Surrey college of technology
February 15, 2024

This text is a stalwart in approaching independent projects and dissertations. The fourth edition keeps it sharp and current.

Professor Jonathan Parker
Society and Social Welfare, Bournemouth University
September 8, 2023

I so enjoyed reading this book because I felt like Zina was in the room talking to me and I was her student. She clearly understands undertaking research from a student's perspective. She has obviously drawn on a rich and lengthy experience demonstrated by the relevant questions she poses throughout the book and her writing is so easily accessible and understandable, even the bits students often find tricky. All aspects the process are covered, from preliminary thinking to actually getting started to finally sharing your research with others. A book I will definitely include in our reading list for next year.

Mrs Kim Lawler
Department Education, Bradford College
July 9, 2022

This a very useful and comprehensive book for students studying research methods and/or dissertations students.

Mr Alfonso Pezzella
Dept of Mental Health, Social Work, Middlesex University
October 10, 2022

Simple and easy to use for my MSc Students especially those that have never done a dissertation.

Dr Sinfree Gono
School of Management, Royal Holloway, University of London
December 29, 2022

Really useful text, accurate, brief and clear direction for students and staff. I do not manage research but supervise researchers and this is an excellent framework for creating excellence in this essential discipline.

Mr David Charles Bates
Faculty of Health, University of Cumbria
October 15, 2021

Great book for beginner researchers

Mrs Geraldine Anita Parks
Department of Education, St Mary's University College (Belfast)
June 7, 2021

Content is appropriate for intended student population

Professor Gerardo Restrepo
Education, Universite de Sherbrooke
December 19, 2021