Surveying students’ knowledge about cloud computing

The requirements:
What is a research protocol?
Note that a research protocol is not a research proposal, but a research protocol would be contained within a proposal. After deciding on the problem to be examined, the next step is to develop the plan for how the research is to be conducted. This is a very important phase as the integrity of the research and credibility of its outcomes depend on the methods. Think garbage in, garbage out. There are many approaches that may be used for the same problem. Which one will provide the best evidence and thus the best answers? Which one is the most feasible given the time and resource constraints?
Analogically, a research protocol is like a recipe; you need to specify all of the ingredients and the procedures for how the ingredients will be combined. You need enough detail so that another person could replicate what you have done.

  1. What is the nature of the problem? This will predict the research design and type of methods used.
    a) is it a problem that knowingly exists, but little is known about its characteristics or possible causes?
    b) do you suspect certain factors contribute to the problem?
    c) do you know which factors contribute to the problem, but you need to understand the cause, and potential solution?
    d) do you know enough about what causes the problem, and would like to assess an intervention?

2) Once the type of problem is known, then what is the best way to study it?
a) by soliciting data from a set of respondents via a survey, interview (structured and unstructured), or focus groups
b) by observing a situation using human observation or machine observation
c) by testing a condition using experiment
Sometimes, the design includes mixed methods. We will examine types of designs mapped with appropriate methods in the class on January 21st . But you will need to do your homework in advance. Use the checklist provided in class to assess your particular problem.
The research protocol identifies the variables to be tested; the methods used; any instruments from questionnaires to interview script and experimental protocols; if required, a description of the potential participant group and how you will recruit; and how you propose carrying out the process. This should be a blueprint for the next stage in the process.

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