Fleshing Out an Argument

Fleshing Out an Argument

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For Week 6 of Problems, Theories, and Literature, our goal was to flesh out the skeleton of our Research Problem from Week 5. I feel like I both did and did not make a lot of progress this week. While I think I successfully fleshed out my Research Problem, I don’t feel like I read enough, nor do I feel good about my last annotation (which I’ll discuss more below). I also made the choice to substitute teach more this past week, putting me in the classroom every day but Friday. I need to find a healthier balance of subbing and doctoral work, but I also need to find better ways to read when I am not at home.

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Constructing a Research Problem; Writing an Argument

Constructing a Research Problem; Writing an Argument

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Week 5 marks a major transition in our Problems, Theories, and Literature course. While we are still consuming mass quantities of scholarly literature, we are beginning to use that scholarly literature to craft a research problem. This process builds on the process we started in Introduction to Music Education Research. We discussed it at great length in our Live Classroom on Tuesday, and began constructing a skeleton of a research problem in our blog post for this week. In that blog post (below), I shared some of the issues I am having with the process in general. Finally, we also had to complete another annotation of an article we read this week.

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Scholarly Reading and Writing

Scholarly Reading and Writing

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Week 4 for Problems, Theories, and Literature course was quite similar to the first three weeks: a primary focus on continuing to read scholarly literature about our topic of interest. Instead of a Live Classroom this week, we each had a one-on-one meeting with our assigned professor to discuss how our reading is going. Like previous weeks, we also had to complete a blog post and annotation. My parents came to visit at the end of the week, so while I feel significantly better about reading and my process (see below), the end of the week felt rushed to complete the blog post, responses, and annotations. I also got to meet a classmate for lunch who happened to be in Charlottesville for a wedding. After my readings this week and meetings with my professor and classmate, I feel much better about my progress and track for this course.

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Narrowing Down a Topic

Narrowing Down a Topic

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I realized as I went to create the post for Week 4, that I had not finished my post for Week 3! Week 3 for the Problems, Theories, and Literature course ran from Tuesday, September 17–Monday, September 23 and functioned similarly to the previous two weeks. Our primary goal was to continue reading scholarly literature about our research interest(s) while participating in a Live Classroom, completing and responding to blog posts, revising our annotation from Week 2, and completing a new annotation. The study guide is below. This week was harder for me because I subbed Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday for band at the upper elementary and middle schools. I felt behind on my reading all week.

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Epistemologies, Theoretical Perspectives, and Frameworks

Epistemologies, Theoretical Perspectives, and Frameworks

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Week 2 of Problems, Theories, and Literature: Making a Contribution to the Field asked us to look deeper at Crotty’s concept of the four elements of social research: epistemology, theoretical perspective, methodology, and methods. Our blog posts from Week 1 discussed epistemologies with which we identified, but I struggled with differentiating my epistemology and theoretical perspective. This week provided much more clarity from our discussions and kicked off the reading a great deal of scholarly literature related to our phenomena of interest.

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Scholarly Reading & Research Problems

Scholarly Reading & Research Problems

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Last night kicked off Week 1 of Problems, Theories, and Literature: Making a Contribution to the Field. It began with a Live Classroom with all four of our professors: Karin Hendricks, Tawnya Smith, Ron Kos, and Gareth Dylan Smith. While most first Live Classrooms are a meet-and-greet, after our professors introduced themselves, we got right down to business with a lecture on scholarly reading and another on techniques for reading. For this first week, we are doing a little bit of assigned reading and gathering scholarly work related to our research interest.

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Problems, Theories, and Literature: Making a Contribution to the Field

Problems, Theories, and Literature: Making a Contribution to the Field

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The next course I am taking in Boston University’s Online Doctoral of Musical Arts in Music Education program is Problems, Theories, and Literature: Making a Contribution to the Field. Unlike the other 4-credit courses that make up this degree program, PTL is a 15-week course instead of 7. The course is taught by Dr. Karin Hendricks (newly appointed chair of music education), Dr. Tawnya Smith, and Dr. Ron Kos (professor of the Psychology & Sociology course). To summarize the scope of the course, we are building the habits of scholars to prepare for our dissertations. I’ll highlight some excerpts from the syllabus.

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