Disqus website-based commenting as an e-research method: engaging doctoral and early-career academic learners in educational research

Kilburn, Daniel and Earley, Jonathan (2015) Disqus website-based commenting as an e-research method: engaging doctoral and early-career academic learners in educational research. NCRM Working Paper. Taylor & Francis.

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/1743727X.2015.1026253

Abstract

This article presents an adaptation of established qualitative research methods for online focus groups by using the Disqus website-based commenting platform as a medium for discussion amongst doctoral and early-career academic learners. Facilities allowing internet users to comment on the content of web-pages are increasingly popular on news websites, social media, and elsewhere. This research deployed this technology as a means of hosting a group discussion in response to preliminary findings from a study into the teaching and learning of social research methods. This article explores the methodological and technical considerations associated with this method and presents an analysis of the data collection process. e-Research paradata generated by the website reveals how learners engaged with the discussion, whilst a thematic analysis of the comments themselves explores the nature of the qualitative data generated from responses. Website-based commenting appears to have potential as a means of facilitate learners’ engagement in educational e-research, especially when faced with constraints of distance, time, or access. However, methodological challenges may also arise when recruiting participants and sustaining discussion using this method.

Item Type:Working Paper (NCRM Working Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Disqus, website-based commenting, qualitative e-research, e-research, paradata
Subjects:1. Frameworks for Research and Research Designs > 1.21 Digital Social Research
2. Data Collection > 2.11 Online Data Collection
7. ICT and Software > 7.3 Technology
7. ICT and Software > 7.4 ICT and Software (other)
9. Research Skills, Communication and Dissemination > 9.6 Teaching and Supervising Research Methods
ID Code:3755
Deposited By: NCRM users
Deposited On:11 May 2015 11:36
Last Modified:11 May 2015 13:24

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