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COMMUNICATIONS STUDIES & MEDIA ARTS 1A03 - Introduction to Communication Research

Research as Inquiry

When choosing a research question consider:

  • Are you interested?
  • Is it relevant?
  • Is it important?

Next,

Gather background research on a topic of your choice.

Frame it: 

  • What is the discussion on your topic?
  • What do you already know?
  • What needs to be explored further?

Consider:

  • Is the question too broad or narrow?
  • Can it be answered?

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Choosing an Essay Topic

This video describes how to come up with a research topic, or research question, for an essay. (2:32)

Transcript (PDF) | Transcript (.docx)

Choosing Keywords

This video explains how to choose keywords for database searching when doing research. (2:43)

Transcript (PDF) | Transcript (.docx)

Choosing Keywords  Describe the Research Topic: Consider phrasing your topic as a question to guide your research. What are the main concepts/themes/theories that you are interested in exploring? Example: How does the media cover student protests?   Identify Main Concepts: Identify the main concepts in your description (usually verbs and nouns). Avoid using relational words such as: affect, cause, impact. Example of main concepts from the prior research question: student, protest, media  Brainstorm related words: What other words or phrases may be used to talk about your main concepts? Example: student: university, college, undergrad, grad. Protest: boycott, demonstration. Media: news, television, broadcast, CBC.

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