Research and Enquiry

Originally published here.

“What is the best way to cook an egg?” was the question we were asked to tackle and to find a solution to. I realised it was going to be quite a challenge seeing as the question was very broad and open to interpretation and we would have to collaborate our research to find an answer. In terms of the research process, I found it very useful that we had guidelines to help with the inquisition as this made the process much more systematic and easier to approach as well. The research and enquiry was very time consuming and required a lot of thought as you needed to draw from various resources and not just type into google the question and assume that the first answer you see is definitive. However, it has been very useful as it has helped me develop my ability to be critical about sources and also cross referencing information to draw the best quality data which involves both qualitative and quantitative data. Quantitative data gives us better objectivity and the results we assume, would be accurate and therefore it gave us a good basis for our research by providing us with data to work from and which was also relatively easy to obtain. Qualitative data gives us richer and more detailed information to work with, although this is much more subject to opinion and bias and so we had to procede with caution whilst handling this form of data. I believe in order to get the best results you would have to draw conclusions from both types of data (triangulation) which is a new skill I have acquired during this week.
In terms of our success as a group working on this project, I found it difficult to communicate with the other members of the group on many separate occasions regarding which direction our research was going to take. This problem has most likely arisen from the fact the discussions had to take place online and we were not on at the same time to properly debate how to answer this question, and some members of the group failed to make an appearance and contribute to the research. This made it difficult to really make good progress on the project as a group as it took a while for it to really start up. Admittedly it took myself a good part of the week to really get going as it took me a while to figure out how to use google docs in the first place! Nevertheless I believe the project would have been more succesful had it not been for the fact everything was done online and if some members of the group were more co-operative and a the moment it hasn’t been published as I’m waiting for a group consensus to approve.
I think i made an effort in collaborating my ideas with others, however as some members of the group did not attempt to make any changes or respond very much it is hard to assess how affective I was as a collaborator. This probably wasn’t helped by the fact none of us where ever online at the same time. However, I believe i could have given more feedback on other peoples input to the project and engaged in more discussion, as well as starting the project slightly earlier! All in all, I think this week has shown some of the difficulties of working in the groups sometimes but also highlighted how useful it can be to share ideas and information.