Saturday, November 26, 2005

Freewriting Topics

This assignment is supposed to do two things – (1) get us to realize and practice how freewriting can break a writers block and actually reveal buried and valuable thoughts in our own heads, and (2) allow us to explore ideas in research methods. For me, it has done #1 very well. I had not realized what a great cauldron of ideas was sitting on top of my neck. I thought it was just a good place to display a UM hat. However, it is has not been so successful at #2. During the first week of class we identified the 3 major methods of research – qualitative, quantitative, and mixed. Since then we have spent the semester circling these topics and adding more layers to them. However, I soon ran out of new topics to explore in this journal. I could have rewritten on the same topic after learning more. Also, many of the textbooks we are using are dead boring. They go on, and on, and on about simple ideas. I am now sold on the value of qualitative methods, but in spite of my experience with the texts. Those books (esp. Northcutt and Patton) make me think they have an inferior method and they have to write long and boringly about it to try to justify it. Thank heavens for Creswell and Punch. They really rescue qualitative methods from its own proponents. Reading papers that use a qualitative method has been must more valuable than reading books on the topic. It is clear that some questions have to be created first qualitatively before they can be proven quantitatively.

As I read the chapters in the textbooks, I am seldom struck by a really interesting or new idea. Too often I am lulled into boredom and just keep swimming until the end of the chapter. I must admit that when I get to my dissertation, I may find these books invaluable references – I that might just be a polite way of saying they stink … which they really do.


Post a Comment

<< Home