[Solution]Dissertation Research Plan: QUANTITATIVE STUDIES ONLY

Research Plan Process You will use this form in obtaining approval for Milestones 2-5. The goals of this process are to: (1) facilitate the planning…

Research Plan Process

You will use this form in obtaining approval for Milestones 2-5. The goals of this process are to: (1) facilitate the planning of the details of your dissertation research study, (2) allow for scientific merit review and (3) facilitate your progress through the dissertation.  You must obtain approval of your Research Plan before seeking IRB approval, collecting data, and writing your full dissertation or any of your chapters. Approval of the Research Plan satisfies dissertation milestone 5, indicating that the Dissertation Research Plan has passed the “scientific merit review,” part of the IRB process.

Scientific Merit Criteria for the Research Plan

Advances the scientific knowledge base.  Makes a contribution to research theory.  Meets certain “hallmarks” of good research methodology.

**Obtaining Scientific Merit approval for your Research Plan does not guarantee you will obtain IRB approval. A detailed ethical review will be conducted during the process of IRB approval.

How to Use This Form

This Research Plan form is intended to help you plan the details of your dissertation. It provides a space for you and to work out all the details of your design. Once you have obtained Research Plan approval, you should be able to easily expand on the information you have submitted here and write the dissertation chapters because these sections follow the outline of the Dissertation Chapters 1-3.  It is recommended that you use this form in a step-by-step way to help you deign your study. Expect that you will go through several revisions before obtaining approval this form. Research Planning is an iterative process, each revision often sparking the need for further revisions until everything is aligned. These iterations and revisions are a necessary and customary part of the research process.


Do’s and Don’ts

Do use the correct form! This RESEARCH PLAN is for QUANTITATIVE designs (statistical analysis). For a QUALITATIVE design, use that form.Don’t lock the form. That will stop you from editing and revising within the form.Do complete the “Learner Information” and Section 1 first.Don’t skip items or sections. If an item does not apply to your study, type “NA” in its field.Don’t delete the descriptions in the left column!Do read the item descriptions carefully. Items request very specific information. Be sure you understand what is asked.Do use primary sources to the greatest extent possible as references. Textbooks are NOT acceptable as the only references supporting methodological and design choices. Use textbooks to track down the primary sources.Do submit a revised Research Plan if, after approval, you change your design elements. It may not need a second review, but should be on file before your IRB application is submitted.


Complete the following steps to request Scientific Merit Review (SMR) approval for your dissertation:

Residency Learners: Your Residency Instructor will facilitate this process.Dissertation Learners: Your Mentor will facilitate this process.
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