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The research report consists of four parts:

Part 1 Research topic, research questions, and research design
Part 2 Literature review
Part 3 Research methodology
Part 4 Discussion and conclusion

part 1A: First, you will need to identify a criminal justice related topic that you want to explore throughout all of the assignments associated with the final research report. Second, provide a brief discussion about why you chose your topic and why researching that topic is important to the field of criminal justice. Third, to assist you in determining the type of research that has already been done on your topic and to give you a head start on Part 2 of your research report, you will need to include a list of five scholarly sources related to your topic.

part 1b: Developing a research question is one of the most important parts of the research study. Your research question is what dictates the type of methodology that will be used in the study. There are certain research questions that lend themselves to pure (basic) versus applied research. There are certain research questions that lend themselves to qualitative versus quantitative research. Therefore, it is imperative that you establish the research question prior to conducting a study. This is important as you are formulating your steps to solve the problem in your empirical research. It should also be noted here that if one is asking qualitative type research questions, answers might not result. Instead, additional questions or sub-questions may result, which is an acceptable result.

For this part of the assignment, you are tasked with developing a research question. Based on your research question, you will need to generate at least one hypothesis or at least one sub-question that is associated with your research question.

Keep in mind that the research question needs to be connected to the topic that you identified in Part 1A of the assignment, and it needs to be a question that you want to explore throughout the other parts of this assignment and subsequent assignments related to the final research report.

Part 1C: Research design

You will need to decide whether your research will use an experimental design, a quasi-experimental design, or a pre experimental design. Provide a discussion that explains how your research falls into the experimental design that you chose. While you do not need to go into specifics about the methodology that you will utilize for your research study, you do need to be able to discuss to what extent your design will or will not incorporate equivalents, observation, treatment, and time.

Part 2: Begin your literature review with a very brief discussion of your research topic and related questions and/or hypothesis.
Briefly summarize a) research focus, b) research methodology, and c) key findings of the scholarly sources that you identified for use in your literature review.
Critically evaluate the findings of each study in relation to your research topic, questions, and/or hypothesis. This can include comparing and contrasting each studys findings, a discussion of the weaknesses of the studys methodologies, and identification of the needs for future study as a result of the studys findings. The critical evaluation of the studies in relation to your research topic, questions, and/or hypothesis can either come at the end of each summary of the scholarly sources or it can come at the end of the literature review after all of the summaries of the scholarly sources have been provided. Note: The main purpose of the literature review is to:
discuss the available research related to your topic and
identify how that research relates to your topic and informs the methodology that you will use to conduct your study. Both of these elements must be present in the literature review. Thus, while you are not required to provide your research methodology in this assignment, the literature review should allow for an easy transition into your research methodology that you will present in Part 3 of the research report.

part 3:To prepare your research methodology, complete the following tasks:

Begin your research methodology with a very brief discussion of your research focus and a list of your related questions and/or hypothesis.
Discuss the main variables that will be explored in your study. Be sure to specify how those variables will be measured.
For example, if you were interested in studying the relationship between sex and illegal drug use, you would need to make sure to specify what information you want to collect for each variable. For sex, you could choose to measure it as having the attributes of a male or female. For illegal drug use, you could choose to measure it by looking at the number of times someone was arrested for possession of illegal drugs. You could further distinguish that by only looking at the amount of drugs that someone was arrested with and determining based on the weight, whether it was considered possession for personal consumption or distribution. This is just a brief example of how the variables could be measured. There are a variety of other ways in which these two variables could be measured. Thus, you can see why it is important to not only identify the variables but to also specify how the variables will be measured.
Present your research methodology. You need to ensure that the specific steps you will follow to explore your research questions and/or hypotheses are clear to the reader. Avoid the use of general statements and direct quotes from the textbook about what should be included in the research methodology. Your task is to discuss in your own words what you would specifically do to study your research topic. What steps would you engage in to ensure that your proposed study properly explores the research questions and/or hypotheses that you developed? In your methodology, you need to discuss the following concepts:
Research design
Note: Remember to refer back to Unit II Assignment, Part 1C where you discussed your research design.
Include a discussion of the methodological approach (i.e., qualitative, quantitative, or mixed method).
Include a discussion of how threats to internal and external validity are addressed.
Participant selection process
Include a discussion of the participant characteristics and related ethical considerations.
Data collection process
Include a discussion or an example of the data collection techniques (e.g., surveys, case studies, participant observation, unobtrusive measures, and secondary data).
Include a discussion of the step-by-step procedures you will follow to collect the data from your study participants using your data collection technique.
You will be formulating your data collection techniques but not actually collecting the data.
Protection of human subjects
Include a brief discussion about how your research studys methodology will ensure human subject(s) protections (e.g., minimal harm to participants, consent, and confidentiality). Such statements may address the submission of your study protocol to an institutional review board (IRB), or a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) review, or compliance with National Institute of Justice (NIJ) human subject requirements.
Study timeline
Include a brief sketch of the anticipated timeline associated with conducting your study from the IRB review to the completion of data collection.

part 4:To prepare your discussion and conclusion, complete the following tasks:

Discussion
Provide an in-depth discussion of the findings that could have resulted if you actually conducted your proposed study.
Remember to return to your research questions and/or hypotheses as well as findings from the studies you discussed in your literature review to assist you in developing this section of the research report.
Provide a discussion about any conclusions that can be drawn from the anticipated findings.
You are in essence being asked to discuss whether or not you think that you would have found support for your hypotheses, answers to your research questions, or additional research questions.
Provide a discussion about any study limitations that are associated with your proposed studys research methodology.
Remember that your studys limitations would have been considered during the development of your research methodology.

Conclusion
Provide a discussion about the potential impact of the results of your study on the field of criminal justice (e.g., practices and policies).
Include a discussion about how managers in criminal justice agencies would be able to use your studys findings as managerial tools for working with criminal justice personnel.
Provide a discussion about future research possibilities that are related to your proposed study.

Note: This part of the assignment requires that you use your knowledge of the existing research in the field, the understanding of your proposed study design, and your intellectual creativity to discuss some potential findings that could result if you had actually conducted the study. Based on that discussion, you are able to provide a conclusion that identifies areas in need of additional research and discusses the significance of your proposed study to the field of criminal justice. This is the part of the research project where your empirically inspired opinions should be discussed. There should be very few direct quotes that appear in this portion of the research report. If possible, no direct quotes should appear in this section of the research report. Thus, this portion of the research report should be dominated by your voice.

Title Page
Abstract
Introduction
Literature Review
Methodology
Discussion and Conclusion
References

 

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