Research Methodology

This course in research methodology is designed for all graduate students at the Graduate Theological Foundation, whether in professional or academic degree programs. All graduate degrees, whether praxis-oriented or research-oriented, require a capacity to engage in research and all research requires specific methodological skills in its execution.  This course is designed to facilitate a practical understanding of research methodology and the writing of graduate-level papers, with particular attention to precision in research practices and publication.  Based on the required text written by members of the GTF faculty, the course should be taken as the final course of the degree program, before commencing the research and writing of a thesis or exit project. The course requirements consist of the components necessary for completion of the research thesis or project.  Performance expectations are different depending on whether the student is pursuing a professional degree or an academic degree.

Academic Degree Students will write a 5,000-7,500 word paper, based on their planned thesis, consisting of a first draft of the thesis abstract, outline, bibliography, and a statement as to the nature of the “contribution to the field” the thesis has attempted to make. Less emphasis on this last point will characterize the master’s thesis but more emphasis will be placed on this last point when dealing with a doctoral thesis, whether Ph.D. or Th.D.  This course must be completed prior to commencing the writing of the thesis. 

Professional Degree Students will write a 5,000-7,500 word paper summarizing the first six chapters in the book.  The student will demonstrate how each chapter relates (or does not relate) to the exit project being developed for this degree, whether a doctorate or a masters.  This paper will consist of a first draft of the outline, bibliography, and a statement as to the nature of the “contribution to the field” the exit project has attempted to make.  Specific emphasis will be placed upon the “praxis” (practical application) character of the project with special attention to the relevance of the project to the student’s own professional service or ministry.  This course must be completed prior to commencing the writing of the exit project.

The paper must be submitted electronically as a Word document to the Office of Academic Affairs.  Following a careful review by the faculty, the student will receive a response and notification of any needed revisions.  If revisions are needed, further assistance is provided to the student to bring the final paper into compliance with faculty expectations. 
The text for this course, which will be sent to you electronically as a pdf, costs $20.  Students will receive the required reading for the course along with a description of the course requirements by email (pdf attachment) within one week of registering and submitting the text fee.  To register for this course please click here.
The deadline for completion of this course is 90 days from the date of registration.