Too often, the methodology chapter in a DPhil thesis is one of the weakest parts of a manuscript. Too many DPhil students are confused about when and how to discuss such intimidating issues as ontology, epistemology, standpoint and ethics. Yet, if we know how to write well about our research designs and our methodological choices, it should not only impress examiners, but it could also open up a rich seam of additional publications and broaden the impact of your work across the social sciences and humanities. This workshop – taught by Patrick Brindle - is aimed at DPhil students of all levels, and acts as a practical guide to the basics of writing about methods. Drawing on good (and bad) examples throughout, and interspersed with hands-on exercises, the workshop serves as an introduction to an often thorny academic skill for anyone new or newish to research writing.
The goal of the workshop is to break all of the tasks facing you as a methodology writer into practical writing challenges. Hopefully the workshop will demystify what is often a black box for DPhil students, and will set out techniques that can be adopted by DPhil students regardless of whether they are doing quantitative, qualitative or mixed methods research.
To understand why you are writing a methodology chapter
To gain insight into what your thesis examiners require from your methodology chapter
To understand how to use the chapter as a springboard to wider publication
To experiment with different practical ways of writing about methodology using 20 plus ‘rules for methodological writing’
To better connect your methodology chapter with other parts of your thesis
To be able to identify and learn from common mistakes when writing about methods
Participants should bring a laptop, or, failing that, pen and paper to complete the writing tasks.