Introduction to Graduate Research (Fall 2021)/Final project

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The final project for the course will be a 3000-5000 word written document consisting of two parts: (1) a brief strategic plan for the next year or so of your graduate school career and (2) a proposal for a research project you plan to conduct. I've elaborated some expectations for each below.

I am flexible about how you format your work. Please use a format that is readable, visually appealing, and straightforward to understand. Two standard templates you may want to adopt are the PACMHCI template (in use in several ACM Conferences these days) or the 7th edition of the APA Publication Manual (in use in several ICA-affiliated journals). Standard fonts (Times New Roman, etc.) of readable size are good. Decent size margins (at least 1 on all sides) are good. Page numbers are good. Standard reference formats are absolutely necessary. Beyond that, it's up to you. Note that I configure Canvas so that you will need to submit your finished document as a PDF so that there are no formatting integrity issues when I read your work.

Strategic Plan

Please use around 1500 words to address the following questions. For each, make sure to connect your answer to the broader goals you have for your graduate career and research objectives:

       Concisely describe your overall approach to the next academic year+ of your Ph.D. program.
       What (kinds of) courses will you take in the subsequent two quarters of your first year and why?
       What research do you plan to pursue this academic year?
       What plans do you have for the Summer 2022?
       Which conference(s) do you plan to submit to in the coming year on what topic(s)/paper(s)?
       What Northwestern or Chicago area events/workshops might you attend in the next year or so?

Research Planning Document

Please use 2000-3000 words to elaborate a detailed plan for a research project you plan to conduct. This must be a project for which you are responsible for the research design — and are thus actually in a position to plan (I am not interested in reading about your advisor's research plans or projects here, although I understand that your project may need to advance their grants or goals and that you may have every intention of collaborating on the study and potentially even refining the research design with them). This may be a larger-scale project (i.e., a dissertation or book manuscript) or a more narrowly-scoped project (i.e., a single research paper or article). Whatever the case, I

At a minimum, the plan should elaborate the following:

       A rationale for the study. What broad questions, concerns, puzzles, or problems in the world motivate this project?
       General and specific objectives. What broad goals will the study achieve? What specific goals will the study accomplish?
       Background and context (note that this should not be an involved or over-long literature review, but feel free to introduce me to the key references/arguments that help motivate and situate your work).
       Details of your approach. This might include research methods, setting, data, system design, evaluation, or whatever materials you deem salient in the case of your project.
       Anticipated findings and contribution. Give it your best shot.

Submission instructions

Please submit a digital copy of your proposal formatted as a .pdf via Canvas.