Category Archives: Methodology

aims and objectives – what’s the difference?

An old post but still very relevant. A lot of students I work with still struggle with the difference!

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You’re ready, you’re aimed, and now you have to fire off the objectives. But you’re a bit confused. What”s the difference between the two?

An aims-objectives confusion might arise when you are writing thesis proposal and the introductory thesis chapter. It’s always an issue in research bids. The what’s-the-difference question can have you going around in ever smaller unproductive circles if you can’t figure out a way to differentiate between the two things. And the difference is something I’ve recently been asked about, so I’ve decided to post something of an answer.

Dictionaries are only vaguely helpful when thinking about aims and objectives. My desk dictionary says that an aim is to do with giving direction. An aim is “something intended or desired to be obtained by one’s efforts”. On the other hand an objective is to do with achieving an object, it’s about actions, “pertaining to that whose delineation…

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Document analysis for research

Document Analysis
Document analysis

Although they are widely employed by qualitative researchers, documents are rarely used on their own, they are an excellent mechanism for supporting additional data collection mechanisms. In most cases documents are used to provide additional data and to check on the findings deriving from other sources of data. Document analysis are normally used as a method in addition to clear specific data sources, and for many Qualitative researchers can be vital in the data collection process.

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Five tips for writing your Methodology section

I think therefore I am
Think about your Methodology carefully.

Most academics have their own approaches to examining PhDs, some will start from the conclusion and work their way back, while others will spend a huge amount of time reading your aims and then comparing them to your findings. However, what each of these academics has in common is their somewhat religious adherence to the structure and content of the methodology chapter. You must get this right.

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