Chat with us, powered by LiveChat While you are in the infancy of thinking about your dissertation topic, it helps to begin with the end in mind.? During your literature review, you will uncover a gap in the scholarship o - Wridemy Bestessaypapers

While you are in the infancy of thinking about your dissertation topic, it helps to begin with the end in mind.? During your literature review, you will uncover a gap in the scholarship o

  While you are in the infancy of thinking about your dissertation topic, it helps to begin with the end in mind.  During your literature review, you will uncover a gap in the scholarship on your proposed topic.  While this gap may be content or methodological-specific, it is critical to think about the type of methodology your study will employ as you begin your search.  Therefore, you will review the University of the Cumberland’s doctoral research handbook for approved research designs. You will not be “locked in” to your choice until your IRB is approved in DSRT 839, but you should have a general idea of how you will collect data on your proposed topic.  Directions:  1. Review the appendices of the doctoral research handbook to determine a possible research design for your study. 2. Start a new thread in this discussion board whereby you include the following:

  1. One brief paragraph overview of your proposed dissertation topic. Topic is Cyber Security
  2. One brief paragraph overview of the theories related to your topic. This should include at least one in-text citation. 
  3. One brief paragraph about how your topic relates to the goals of your academic program. 
  4. One brief paragraph about the methodology and study design you believe you will use with the topic after reviewing the approved designs in the appendix of the doctoral research handbook. This paragraph should also include how you plan to collect data on this topic. 
  5. Reference list for any in-text citations included.  

3. Reply to one other classmate providing support and coaching for their topic and proposed methodology.   

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Updated 3/242022

Implemented: Summer 2022

GRADUATE SCHOOL

DOCTORAL RESEARCH HANDBOOK

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Table of Contents

Introduction …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 3

Doctoral Program and Research Process …………………………………………………………………………. 3

Purpose of the Handbook ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 3 Doctoral Research Committee …………………………………………………………………………………………… 3

Choosing Committee Members ……………………………………………………………………………………… 3

Committee Chair Responsibilities. ……………………………………………………………………………… 4 Responsibilities of Other Committee Members …………………………………………………………….. 5

Candidate Responsibilities …………………………………………………………………………………………….. 5

Doctoral Research Guidelines ……………………………………………………………………………………………. 6

Choosing a Research Topic …………………………………………………………………………………………… 6 Doctoral Research Timeline ………………………………………………………………………………………….. 6

Dissertation Seminar (DSRT 736) ………………………………………………………………………………. 6 Advanced Research (DSRT 839) ………………………………………………………………………………… 6 Dissertation Sequence (DSRT 930-932) ………………………………………………………………………. 7 Doctoral Research Probation Process ………………………………………………………………………….. 8

Doctoral Research Style ………………………………………………………………………………………………… 8 Quantitative Research …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 9 Qualitative Dissertations ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 10 Mixed-Methods Dissertations ………………………………………………………………………………………. 11 Final Document ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 11 Doctoral Research Approval Process …………………………………………………………………………….. 11 Human Subjects Research: Participant Sampling and Recruitment …………………………………… 12

Site Authorization …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 12 Social Media and Internet Recruitment ……………………………………………………………………… 13 Third-Party Paid Recruitment Services ………………………………………………………………………. 13

Oral Defense ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 14 Graduation ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 15

Appendix A: Quantitative Dissertation (Traditional Five Chapter Format) ……………………………. 16 Appendix B: Doctoral Project (Quantitative: Applied Research Format) ………………………………. 18 Appendix C: Qualitative Dissertation Format ……………………………………………………………………. 20 Appendix D: Qualitative (Historical) and Mixed Methods Dissertation Information ………………. 22 Appendix E: Doctoral Research Evaluation Rubric ……………………………………………………………. 23 Appendix F: Quantitative Research Design ……………………………………………………………………….. 24 Appendix G: Applied Research Design …………………………………………………………………………….. 25 Appendix H: Qualitative Research Design ………………………………………………………………………… 26

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Introduction

Doctoral Program and Research Process

The Graduate School at the University of the Cumberlands offers Doctor of Business

Administration, Doctor of Education, and Doctor of Philosophy degrees. The doctoral research,

designed to evaluate the candidate’s capabilities as a scholar, is the final academic requirement

of the DBA, EdD, and PhD programs. Candidates complete the doctoral research during

professional research courses (DSRT 736, 839, 930, 931), which are the last four courses taken

during the program. This handbook sets forth the guidelines for completing the dissertation or

doctoral project process.

Purpose of the Handbook

The purpose of this handbook is to guide candidates through the doctoral research

process, including developing the research, the oral defense, and final document submission. The

handbook outlines candidate and committee member responsibilities, defines writing guidelines,

identifies required sections for each chapter, and provides printing guidelines for the final

dissertation document. The handbook is to be used by instructors, dissertation chairs, and

committee members to ensure high standards related to the form and appearance of dissertations.

Doctoral Research Committee

Doctoral research committees are made up of three members, including the chair, and

two committee members. Each member has specific responsibilities, as outlined below.

Choosing Committee Members

While enrolled in DSRT 930, the candidate and the chair will identify instructors to serve

on his/her dissertation committee. The DSRT course instructor will serve as the chair. Other

members are to be instructors teaching at the graduate level at the University of the

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Cumberlands. These members should be chosen based on doctoral research topic expertise and

candidate needs. The academic department will provide candidates with a list of instructors

available to serve on committees. The committee member request form is submitted to the

academic department, and any committee changes must be resubmitted to the academic

department.

Committee Chair Responsibilities.

Responsibilities of the committee chair include:

• Advising the candidate through the doctoral research process.

• Guiding the candidate in the selection of two additional committee members.

• Assisting the candidate in meeting deadlines for completion of the doctoral research.

• Assisting the candidate in navigating the IRB approval process.

• Guiding the candidate in achieving a high level of technical and ethical quality in

doctoral research.

• Advising the candidate in the selection of methods/procedures for data collection and

analysis.

• Advising the candidate in proper APA style.

• Determining when a document is ready for review by the committee and communicate

such with committee members. The candidate should avoid consulting the full committee

for feedback without prior approval of the chair.

• Advising the candidate in preparation for the doctoral research defense.

• Notifying the department chair of the date, time, and location of all doctoral research

defense meetings.

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• Submitting the defense scoring rubric from committee members to the department chair

promptly after the defense.

• Submitting a print-ready copy of the doctoral research to the department chair before the

anticipated graduation date of the candidate.

Responsibilities of Other Committee Members

Responsibilities of other committee members include:

• Providing subject matter expertise as requested by the chair or candidate.

• Reading drafts and providing meaningful feedback.

• Corresponding with the chair and candidate as needed for clarification and resolution of

methodological issues during the doctoral research process.

• Immediately notifying candidate and doctoral research chair when major flaws that are

likely to result in a candidate’s unsuccessful defense are identified.

• Signing the signature page promptly.

Candidate Responsibilities

Responsibilities of the doctoral research candidate include:

• Coordinating with the chair to select committee members based on expertise in the

doctoral research topic area. The candidate is encouraged to select at least one member

with expertise in data collection and analysis.

• Completing the IRB process to obtain approval for research before collecting data.

• Choosing a topic, submitting proofread drafts of materials to the chair, preparing

adequately for consultations, and communicating regularly with the chair.

• Contacting the chair in the event of any significant change in the personal or professional

situation, which may interfere with program completion.

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• Successfully defending research.

• Submitting an error-free, print-ready copy of the dissertation as a pdf document to the

dissertation chair and the academic department promptly after a successful defense.

Doctoral Research Guidelines

Choosing a Research Topic

Candidates begin thinking about doctoral research topics when applying for admission to

the program. The doctoral research topics must be grounded in theory, related to program goals,

and have implications for practitioners. Candidates are encouraged to choose research topics of

personal relevance and significance. When opportunities arise in coursework, candidates should

begin researching these topics in the form of literature reviews and other assignments that allow

for research. The research topic will be narrowed to a research study and approved by the

department chair/director and subsequently the graduate school when candidates enroll in the

first doctoral research course, DSRT 736.

Doctoral Research Timeline

Dissertation Seminar (DSRT 736)

Candidates submit the topic approval form in DSRT 736, and the academic department

coordinates the topic approval process with the 736-course professor. Candidates complete the

review of the literature (Chapter Two) while enrolled in DSRT 736. Completing DSRT 736 is a

requirement for enrolling in DSRT 839.

Advanced Research (DSRT 839)

While enrolled in DSRT 839, candidates complete Chapter One, the introduction to the

dissertation or project, and Chapter Three, the methodology section. Candidates must apply for

approval for their doctoral dissertation or project from the Institutional Review Board while

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enrolled in DSRT 839. IRB approval is required before collecting any data or developing the

project.

Comprehensive Exams

During enrollment in DSRT 839, students complete their Comprehensive Exams.

Through coordination with the Graduate School, Academic Departments provide study sessions,

materials, and remediation as necessary. Students will sign up for the exams during designated

testing windows. Passing the Comprehensive Exams is a requirement to pass DSRT 839 and

proceed to DSRT 930. If a student fails the Comprehensive Exams, or a portion of the

Comprehensive Exams, remediation is required and provided through the Graduate School and

the Academic Department. A student must participate in remediation and sign up for a second

attempt after two weeks of additional preparation. If a student fails the second attempt, then

additional remediation is required. A student must participate in remediation and sign up for a

final attempt four weeks after additional preparation. If a student fails the third attempt, then a

grade of F is recorded for the DSRT 839 class, and the student may be dismissed from the

doctoral program.

Dissertation Sequence (DSRT 930-932)

A completed Chapter One, Two, and Three are required before candidates enroll in

DSRT 930. In 930, candidates complete Chapter Four, which presents their doctoral dissertation

or project findings. While enrolled in DSRT 930, the dissertation is submitted to the graduate

school for a quality review. Once enrolled in DSRT 931, candidates complete Chapter Five. In

Chapter Five, candidates interpret their findings, discuss implications of those findings, present

recommendations for further study and action, and discuss how their study fills a gap in the

literature and contributes to the field of study. The doctoral research committee, and Graduate

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School Quality Review representative will recommend the doctoral dissertation or project for

oral defense when it meets the Graduate School Guidelines. Candidates orally defend their

doctoral research while enrolled in DSRT 931-932, which is the final step in the doctoral

research process. After a successful defense, candidates submit a pdf of the approved dissertation

or project with the signature sheet to the academic department. At that time, the Program

Director recommends the candidates for graduation.

The DBA, EdD, and PhD programs are designed for dissertations or projects to be

completed in four courses. Candidates needing additional time may enroll in additional courses

providing the total time in the program does not exceed five years. Department chairs or Program

Directors must approve enrollment in courses beyond DSRT 931.

Doctoral Research Probation Process

To protect the doctoral research timeline, the following probation process is

proposed. This follows our academic probation process. A “missed deadline” occurs when a

student does not satisfactorily pass any dissertation course and is forced to repeat the course OR

when a student does not complete the dissertation or project in the prescribed timeline and begins

taking additional courses toward degree completion (DSRT 932).

1st missed deadline – Student is placed on academic probation.

2nd missed deadline – Student is removed from and prohibited from participating in CPT.

3rd missed deadline – Student is dismissed from the program.

Doctoral Research Style

Ultimately, the doctoral research will fall into one of the following broad outlines: a

quantitative, qualitative, or mixed-methods study. The seventh edition of the Publication Manual

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of the American Psychological Association (APA) is the style manual to be used in writing the

doctoral research. Candidates should follow all APA guidelines.

Doctoral students may choose between writing a doctoral dissertation following a

quantitative, qualitative, or mixed-methods design, or developing a doctoral project following a

quantitative applied research design (see Appendix F, G, H). Whether a traditional dissertation

study or applied research project, both types of doctoral research are grounded in theory, related

to program goals, and have implications for practitioners. Candidates are encouraged to choose a

dissertation or project topic of personal relevance and significance as well as aligned with the

degree program of study.

The doctoral dissertation, a scholarly document, is written for professionals in the field.

The research questions at hand primarily determine the dissertation style. For instance, a student

may utilize an existing database to evaluate their hypotheses. Access to the database as originally

published is highly encouraged. Alternatively, they could build a novel testing or survey

instrument to gather data needed for their study. Another example may employ an in-depth

comparative case study.

Quantitative Research

There are two options for the quantitative research: Traditional five chapter dissertation

or Applied Research Project.

Traditional Five Chapter Quantitative Dissertation

The traditional quantitative dissertation follows a five-chapter format and a deductive

approach. The required sections for the five chapters of the quantitative dissertation are located

in Appendix A. While there is no set number of pages, quantitative research typically includes

approximately 100 pages. This word requirement applies to the text of the dissertation only; it

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does not cover the title page, acknowledgments, table of contents, or other non-content related

pages. The quantitative dissertation study will follow the conventions of an aligned quantitative

research design (see Appendix F).

Applied Research: Doctoral Project

Students who select the doctoral project will follow the Applied Research Option. This

design extends or applies research through the development of a doctoral project for the DBA,

EdD, and PhD programs. The applied research option, doctoral project, may include software or

application development, business model, or educational program. The doctoral applied research

project will present a new tool, model, or program as determined through the literature review of

existing items in the academic discipline using a systematic applied research approach.

Candidates complete the Applied Research during professional research courses (DSRT 736,

839, 930, 931), which are the last four courses taken during the program (See Appendix B).

There is no set number of pages due to the nature of the doctoral project, but a systematic applied

research approach must be used (see Appendix G).

Qualitative Dissertations

Unlike the quantitative dissertations, which follow a five-chapter format, the qualitative

dissertation is not bound by those requirements. Rather, the qualitative dissertation should be

approximately 45,000 words but must follow a systematic qualitative research approach (see

Appendix H). This word count requirement applies to the text of the dissertation only; it does not

cover the title page, acknowledgments, table of contents, or other non-content related pages.

Thus, with a small indulgence in tautology, the dissertation should be as long as it needs to be, as

long it meets the minimum word requirement (See Appendix C).

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Mixed-Methods Dissertations

The program director must approve the mixed-methods dissertation methodology,

and the dissertation committee will provide guidance and expertise on the formatting

requirements for this type of dissertation (See Appendix C). Specific formatting guidelines for

the mixed methods dissertation study will be specified by the program director, dissertation

chair, and/or committee following a five chapter format.

Final Document

The final doctoral research document must be submitted while enrolled in the last

research course, typically DSRT 931. The candidates submit an error-free, print-ready copy final

doctoral research documents after the successful oral defense. The final doctoral research must

include all committee members, Graduate School Quality Control representative, and APA editor

recommended edits in the final pdf document. The copy is to be submitted electronically to the

academic program. If a candidate would like bound doctoral research copies, then he or she may

submit two printed copies (using white, 24 lb. résumé paper) of the doctoral research to the

academic program office before the designated semester deadline. After having those copies

bound, the UC Binding Department will return the two copies to the candidate. If the candidate

wishes to request more than two bound copies, he/she should submit the number desired. The

Binding Department will bill the student for the additional copies at a minimal cost per copy.

Doctoral Research Approval Process

Approval for conducting doctoral research should be obtained while enrolled in DSRT

839 and is a pre-requisite to piloting, developing a project, or gathering research. The

Institutional Review Board application to conduct research, and all supporting documents must

be submitted to the IRB chair. Students should self-register for the IRB and Research

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Organization in iLearn for forms, tutorials, supporting materials, and links for IRB submission.

The doctoral research chair will review the document, and then the student should submit the

documents to the IRB chair following the links in the IRB and Research Organization.

Candidates will receive an IRB Approval Letter once the research has been approved. No

research is to be executed until IRB approval is granted, and all necessary consents (adults) and

assents (minors) are secured from participants. The IRB Approval Letter is to be placed in the

doctoral research as Appendix A.

Human Subjects Research: Participant Sampling and Recruitment

The dissertation manuscript must include a description of the study target population, and

a justification for the aligned sampling method to recruit human subjects that are representative

of the study target population is required. Therefore, it is also essential that procedures for the

recruitment of potential participants reflect inclusion/exclusion criteria, recruitment materials,

and any third-party recruitment services including paid services. To ensure ethical and quality

research, recruitment procedures must not include any procedures that can be inferred as

coercive, misleading, unduly influential, or involve dual relationships between the principal

investigator and potential participants. Recruitment may not occur within research settings where

the investigator’s personal network (family, friends, professional or other social relationships) or

any site where the investigator is employed or otherwise involved in supervisory relationships

with potential participants.

Site Authorization

A letter of site authorization, site permission, or letter of agreement is required from each

research setting where participant recruitment will be conducted. This includes the primary

organization that serves as the research setting. For example, if K12 principals from a particular

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state are the target population and sampling will occur with the state principals’ association, a

site authorization letter is needed from the association. Site authorization may be provided via a

letter on the organization’s letterhead or by email with the authorizer’s role and organization

included.

Social Media and Internet Recruitment

Recruitment that involves social media or other internet sites or services must clearly

reflect the study target population. Internet recruitment that involves paid services to sample

participants must also meet the requirements for third-party paid recruitment services. A detailed

description is required for how the recruitment process will ensure that potential participants

reflect the target population. A site authorization email is required for social media recruitment

from closed groups (e.g., Facebook, LinkedIn, or others). If an open group is to be used, a

detailed description of the group is required. Recruitment from social media or other internet

accounts where the investigator holds dual relationships (including family, friends, social

relationships, and/or professional subordinates) may not be used for internet or social media

recruitment. Approval for social media or internet recruitment may be needed from the program

director.

Third-Party Paid Recruitment Services

Third-party paid recruitment services may be used on a case by case basis (e.g., survey

tools, internet mining services, self-testing tools, or others) for participant recruitment as this

form of recruitment is not appropriate for all types of research. Use of third-party recruitment

services may potentially impact the validity of research as the exact identity of participants is not

usually possible. The recruited sample through third-party paid recruitment may not be

representative of the actual target population for the specific doctoral research study. A detailed

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description of the service, cost of the service, and recruitment procedure should be provided.

The detailed recruitment procedural description must also supply assurances that potential

participants recruited by the service will reflect the target population. This level of assurance will

require additional inclusion of specific qualifications and inclusion/exclusion criteria to be set

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