Friday, April 9, 2010

Asking the right questions

It would seem that the reading this week focuses on asking the right questions. Chapter 6 in Creswell begins by saying that the design of a qualitative study begins before the researcher chooses a qualitative approach.
So the overarching problem or issue that needs to be explored needs to be determined. Once the problem is identified then the questions can be raised that best explore that issue.
Where I am at right now, my big question is "Why do Koreans study English?" It is nice and broad and it can allow the exploration of many facets of Korean culture.
Of course, one question is going to lead to another. "Why is English important?" needs to be addressed. If people studying English in Korea are deemed to be successful then the question, "How can Korea's success studying English be emulated in other places?"
The literature review that I have completed explores the issue of "How to motivate students in an EFL classroom." So how can this literature review be accomodated with the qualitative study?
EFL Teachers need a study to help them learn effective ways to motivate their students to learn English in Korea. So this study could be of service to teachers who want to best understand how to motivate their students.
I plan to take a descriptive approach and describe the phenomenon. There are issues of money or a better salary or job to be explored. If someone has a command of English then they might see a change in their social status. If someone can communicate in English then they could feel that they can express their true feelings as they released from cultural confines of their native language. These are the leads I have so far.
I am interested in doing an ethnography. In an ethnography, the writer might identify the key cultural concepts being examined such as roles, behaviors, acculturation, communication, myths, stories, and concepts. So I need to explore these areas and then interview participates and then reflect on the data.
I hope everyone is enjoying the weekend.
Cheers, Chad Pozsgay

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