Unit 2: Research Methods
These are the steps that will be useful as you build your thesis argument. This is advice that I will follow as I build my own thesis.
1. Keep a log that contains all of the information that you are following. One great practice is to keep an idea book.
In my work process it is important to keep record of the material that I find. I am keeping a computer file of the pertinent information that I find. I am also posting the most relevant findings in my blog. I do like the clarity of the material that is posted on the blog. Having the ability to add visual material enhances the whole experience.
I intend to use my computer blog in unison with an actual idea book. One book that had a huge influence on me is An Illustrated Life by Danny Gregory. I feel that fine art and illustration does inspire me a great deal. Gregory book shows how individuals can create a type of a visual log in order to capture ideas.
2. Approach your subject inquiring and questioning all aspects.
I get into the most trouble when I make assumptions and I do not pursue a topic in depth. It is important to keep all materials even if it does not seem to have great relevance. One of the most important questions will relate to how individuals can use the material that I am developing. I do not want my thesis to merely be the chronicling of a story; I want it to be something of value. I want it to lead to future advancements in our field.
3. Keep all material because you never know when aspects of material may become more relevant later on in the process.
In a world that is changing so quickly, I actually find it helpful to hold onto some of the old items that I used in the past. I see this material as being building blocks. Some of the material helps me understand the industry and our advancement as designers even more.
4. Examine the works that have some similarity to your own. This can be helpful as you build your own thesis. You can then take measures not to follow someone else’s pathway.
5. Build on the worth of your subject. Establish the purpose behind your work and strengthen the value of your work as you perform your research.
6. Establish your own unique argument.
As I developed these steps and studied the suggestions of Irene Clark, I see that this is right in alignment with the method that Clark described as being Problem, Question and Purpose.