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Thinking about Research in the Disciplines

posted: 5.25.11 by Barclay Barrios

I have come to believe that quite often students don’t know how to connect the work we’re doing in the classroom to the work they will come to do in their disciplines and majors. So this semester, I’ve crafted a disciplinary research report assignment to address just that disconnect.

The assignment is fairly low stakes writing in the context of our course, but it does give students a chance to see how research and researched writing happens in their chosen field. They discover that MLA isn’t the only citation system in the world. They realize that sometimes three, five, or even seven authors will work together on an article. They find out that some fields use a lot of jargon.

But they also see that across all the disciplines, ideas matter. What matters is the ability to apply, connect, assess, test, extend, modify, or refute those ideas. I tell students that the whole purpose of any theory is to predict or explain reality. And when they read in their disciplines, I think they really start to understand what I mean.

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Categories: Assignment Idea, Research
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One Response to “Thinking about Research in the Disciplines”

  1. Dyanne, Broward College Says:

    I am thrilled to see this blog. It’s like being back in your classroom. Thank you for sharing all these great ideas… I received my copy of _Emerging_ about a month ago, and I need to drive up to FAU and get you to sign it. 🙂