Maximizing Research Success through Integrated Multi-level Research Projects

By Renier Steyn and Ria Vosloo.

Published by The International Journal of Science in Society

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: March 27, 2014 $US5.00

Substandard research projects, dissertations, and theses are seen as consequences of massification and the increase in academic workload that results from it. In this paper it is argued that the standards and integrity of research done as part of postgraduate studies can be maintained and workloads reduced by an approach that includes the following: structuring the research for integration, cohort supervision and scaffolding mechanisms. A design for use in a professional taught master’s degree is presented. The proposed design is informed by the requirements of the various stakeholders, particularly demands on throughput requirements and research output. The proposed design is then evaluated against the legislative requirements as stated in the level outcomes for a masters degree in South Africa. The pedagogical implications of the design are also discussed. The limitations as well as other concerns regarding the design are discussed and recommendations for improvements are suggested.

Keywords: Pedagogy, Massification, Supervision, Postgraduate Research

The International Journal of Science in Society, Volume 5, Issue 1, March 2014, pp.43-52. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: March 27, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 602.188KB)).

Prof. Renier Steyn

Professor, Graduate School of Business Leadership, University of South Africa, Midrand, Gauteng, South Africa

Renier Steyn worked for 18 years as a psychologist in the South African Police Services and is presently a Professor at the University of South Africa where he teaches in the field of human resources management and leadership. His academic interests include applied social psychology and research methodology. He obtained a Ph.D. in Industrial and Personnel Psychology as well as a D.Litt. et Phil. in Psychology. He is a registered research psychologist and a post-doctoral research fellow at the Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior - situated at the University of California (UCLA) - as well as a member of the UNISA International Fellowship Programme.

Dr. Ria Vosloo

Johannesburg, Gatuteng, South Africa

Dr Ria Vosloo has extensive practical experience in industry, including the metallurgical, telecommunication, facilities management, conservation and fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) industries. She currently does research and teaches in the area of research supervision. She develops scaffolding for the development of research proposals, which is applied from honours to doctoral level. She has also developed models for massified supervision that are applied in honours and masters programmes in the construction environment. She holds a PhD from the University of Pretoria.