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The Education Dissertation

The Education Dissertation
A Guide for Practitioner Scholars

Edited by:

November 2009 | 184 pages | Corwin
'With each turn of the page I found myself nodding 'exactly!' Whether as a class text assigned by faculty or as a self-study resource used by students, this book will resonate with readers' - Doug Leigh, Associate Professor of Education

Pepperdine University

Writing a dissertation requires focus and commitment. The Education Dissertation provides a step-by-step process for developing and completing an academically rigorous dissertation in a time-efficient manner.

Written for doctoral students in education who are also currently working in the field, this book provides specific and accessible guidance for the entire process, from finding a topic to conducting the literature review to writing and defending the dissertation. Grounded in adult learning theory, this volume:

- Offers a clear, easy-to-follow approach that highlights key milestones with concrete goals and workable methods at each step

- Discusses how practitioner scholars can apply their work experience to the dissertation

- Includes organizational templates complete with detailed charts, checklists, a timeline, student examples, and rubrics

- Provides tips throughout to help students think through situations

- Covers both quantitative and qualitative research

Perfect for practicing educators at any stage of the dissertation process, this resource provides the "big picture" framework as well as the nitty-gritty details.

List of Figures
Who Should Read This Book and Why

Key Features and How to Use Them

About the Author
1. A Guide for Practitioner Scholars
Questioning the Doctorate

Seeing the Doctoral Process Through Doctoral Students’ Eyes

This Book as Guidelines and Guardrails

Strategies for Success

2. A Road Map From Start to Finish
The Big Picture: An Outline of the Process

The Dissertation Timeline

Your Own Timeline and Benchmarks

Embracing Technology: The Table of Contents and Reference List

Structuring Your Life as a Doctoral Student

3. Focusing Your Research
Articulating a Topic in “Academic Speak”

Narrowing the Topic

Your First Success at Focusing: Creating a Title and Research Question

A Final Thought: Focusing Your Research at a Cocktail Party

4. Structuring Your Research
Choosing a Theoretical Framework

Doing a Literature Review

Understanding Research Methodology

Choosing a Research Method

Empirical Methodologies

Linking Research Purpose to Research Method

5. Conducting Your Research
Linking Research Methods to Research Tools

Institutional Review Board (IRB)

Some Final Thoughts Before "ABD-Land"

6. Putting It All Together: Completing Your Dissertation
The Dissertation as a “Machine”

Reverse Engineering Your Dissertation

What Are the Remaining Key Issues?

7. Defending and Moving On
The Dissertation Defense

Publish Your Findings

Apply Your Research: Impacting K-12 Education

Teach the Next Generation: Teaching in Higher Education

The Beginning of Your Journey as a Practitioner Scholar

Key Resources by Topic

"The book is rich with ideas and strategies for thinking about every phase of the dissertation and for undertaking each phase once it has been carefully thought out."

Daniel L. Duke, Professor of Educational Leadership
University of Virginia

"The author does an excellent job of taking a serious, technical, overwhelming topic and making it fun and interesting to read."

Tammy J. Graham, Assistant Professor of Education
The Citadel

"With each turn of the page I found myself nodding 'exactly!' Whether as a class text assigned by faculty or as a self-study resource used by students, this book will resonate with readers."

Doug Leigh, Associate Professor of Education
Pepperdine University
Key features

  • Guides the student through the entire process of writing a rigorous dissertation from selecting the research topic to defending the dissertation
  • Offers the student a road map complete with detailed charts, checklists, a timeline, many student examples and rubrics
  • Provides numerous "hints" throughout the book to help students think through situations before proceeding
  • Explores the various types of research and the implications of each for the particular research topic selected by the student
  • Incorporates "Try This!" activities at each stage of the process to help students understand important concepts, e.g., how to start a literature review correctly, how to focus research questions, and how to operationalize their ideas

Purchasing options

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ISBN: 9781412960441

For instructors