Lightning Talk

Here’s my lightning talk!

As a child, I was diagnosed with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, and it has changed my life in countless ways. The social-emotional effects are often unspoken, under-resourced, and under-researched. Understanding the gaps in research about this topic, I aim to fill them via autoethnographic research.

The Finish Line

We have made it to the finish line!

It was such a pleasure to listen to your lightning talks last night, as I considered each of your plans for future research. What an inspiration! I can see how all of you have evolved as emerging researchers.

You have all begun the deeper process of apprehending your own “research identity” within the field of Writing Studies.  And each of you has engaged in the overall process of “discovery” when it come to the kind of research you might actually pursue for your eventual MA thesis project. No matter what course of inquiry you will eventually pursue for your final thesis project in this MA program, all of you has now engaged in active and formal research processes (in order to complete this degree). I am proud of the collective work you have all done this semester to grow in this particular manner.

A reminder:

Winding Down

Just like in a blink of a flash, poof, it is complete, done, and nearly finished.

This has been an amazing journey, as I have discovered so much about research methods and more about myself. I applaud each of you on a job well done and wish you nothing but the absolute best to come. I leave you now with my lighting slides to share with you later in the day. Blessings. 🤗

In a Flash, it’s Over

My original idea for the research proposal didn’t pan out, but I suppose there’s always a chance that that will happen in the research process. In the end, I’ve arrived at a research question that I truly do find interesting and would like to explore. In my lightning presentation, I will (briefly!) share how I arrived at my current research question and explain why I think it is worth exploring.

Regarding both the slides and my pitch, I am definitely on Team Less-is-More for this presentation. (When I have not limited the words on a slide as was recommended, it is because I think that suddenly encountering words after a few bold images highlights the importance of those words, and that is the effect that I wanted to achieve.)

This concludes my blurb! I am looking forward to hearing everyone’s presentations tomorrow night!

track 11. Lightning Talk! (Outro)

For the final blog post of this course, I just wanted to extend a genuine thank you to everyone involved in this class. You have made my first semester one to remember. I appreciate and am inspired by all of your ideas and thoughtfulness, and I look forward to working with you all more in future semesters. 🙂

Here is the link for my slides:

This PowerPoint, blog post, and Lightning Talk were created with the support of Prince’s album “Sign O’ the Times” (1987).

Mix Methods & the Homestretch

To wrap up our presentation series, we concluded our discussion of qualitative methods with a consideration of the “mix methods” approach. Mixed-methods researchers combine paradigms by applying both quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis in one study. The mixed methods “advantage” might include a more robust description and interpretation of the data in order to make quantitative results more understandable, or it may make the broader applicability of small-sample qualitative findings more understandable with additional numerical findings. In other words, a set of data based in numerical findings enhances the depth of overall findings when paired with a narrative-based set of data. Thanks to Max for the overview of how this pairing of methodologies might work by presenting the findings in Yu et al’s article entitled When students want to stand out: Discourse moves in online classroom discussion that reflect students’ needs for distinctiveness. As we discussed, the challenge might lie in the thoughtful integration of the specific methods and instruments chosen, and understanding exactly how one set of data can “set off” the other in revealing ways.

Our class slides

I am glad we revisited the earlier CARS (Creating a Research Space) model in class. This model was referred to early-on in our ENG 5002 course, during one of our first meetings. Remember how this model emphasizes the idea of “Establishing a territory, …Establishing a niche, …and then Occupying the niche“? Now that you are deeper into the process of your own proposal work, I think it is useful to consider the CARS model like a litmus test. How might the CARS model help you to assess the groundwork and foundations of your proposed research, as you work on the draft by outlining and describing your unique inquiry? **Consider how you are (or are not…yet) establishing a research territory, establishing a research niche, and then occupying a research niche.

I am pleased to have seen the energy and activity in the room during “Peer Review Protocol” time – you were “a buzz” with collaboration and peer support as you exchanged drafts and weighed-in on your work-in-progress together. I hope the peer review process helped you engage further, so that you can continue to refine your research proposal over the next few weeks. I am always emphasizing the iterative nature of research work. Make no mistake, research is always about circling back and refining/updating your vision/ideas.

The Homestretch

So we are on the proverbial homestretch now, with just a few more weeks to go. Next week is our last in person gathering for class. We will have a Potluck Party celebration and a round of inspiring lightning talks that introduce each of your proposed research plans. Here are some critical dates to remember:

  • 4/25 Potluck Party & Lightning Presentations (last in-person class in CAS 308)

What is a “Lightning Talk?

A lightning talk is your “elevator pitch” for your research proposal! A lightning talk is really not about squeezing a whole talk into 10 minutes, it is more about making your point clearly. Ask yourself, why should anyone do this research work I am proposing? Why does this research matter? Make a case for your research. In order to prepare for your brief talk, please:

  • Write a brief script you can read…
  • Practice reading your script before your presentation…
  • It’s okay if you go under 10 mins, but not longer.
  • Make a few slides! Add them to your last blog and the slide roster here. Limit your slides to 3-5 visually appealing slides with only a 1-3 words per slide. These slides are a visual metaphor for the compelling thoughts you will share in your lightning talk.

Bring some food and cheer to our Potluck Party!

I hope to end our ENG 5002 journey on a celebratory note, and I know a bit of food always cheers everyone up. Remember, the lightning talks you are preparing are meant to be intriguing and compelling, and we should all enjoy the diverse ideas everyone will share at the close of our time together. Our last class should be stimulating, energetic, and inspiring. Remember to trust each other to listen thoughtfully, and remember to enjoy the process of co-learning together. Bring a delightful dish!

Your to do list:

  • Prepare your lightning talk
  • Remember to bring something to share at our Potluck Party

For Example…

HalleuYah! Praise Ye, The Lord! On this Thankful Thursday, There Are No Questions; I have so much to Thank God for. As the Bible says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28, NKJV). Thank God, I’ve been called for His purpose. He knows how much I love Him. Thus often work all things together for my good. These God winks are blowing my mind. Besides, Ain’t Nobody Mad But The Devil. Not you. Not me. Not us. Just the father of lies.

Okay, now that I’ve got that out of my system, as Computers in Human Behavior:  When students want to stand out: Discourse moves in online classroom discussion that reflect students’ needs for distinctiveness (Yu et al., May 2016) states, “We wanted to extend the ideas of uniqueness-seeking and optimal distinctiveness to explore how graduate students interact collaboratively in the dialogic process of online discussion with two guided questions” (p. 3). I decided, as often, to utilize some research skills to answer the questions.

Therefore, I discovered when it comes to students’ uniqueness-seeking needs that relate to the different discourse moves they exhibit in an online discussion, I found simple examples to help me better understand this theory. For example, let us consider this cute example from a third-grade classroom relating to knowledge-focused sharing time in practice. The Teacher, Mr. Levia (all names are pseudonyms), is facilitating sharing as part of the class’s morning meeting routine. He has communicated with the families when each student will have their “sharing day” for the quarter, and how to prepare at home by selecting a topic and artifact, then practicing sharing. The student of the day, Tara, has brought in a circuitry set from home. Tara’s mom is an electrician, and Tara enjoys creating electronic devices with her mom’s help and experimenting on her own. Tara shares the circuitry kit, explaining some of the things she has built and demonstrating a small circuit that lights up a light bulb.

Tara: So, you connect the wire here, and it completes the circuit.

Mr. Levia: Interesting, Tara. How do you know the circuit is complete?

Tara: Look, I can flip the switch and the light bulb comes on! [Classmates exclaim with excitement.] If the circuit wasn’t complete, the…um…current…wouldn’t flow to the light. So, if the light didn’t come on, I know the circuit isn’t complete.

Juliana: Like our Christmas lights!

Tara: Yes, it’s the same thing as with Christmas lights. It’s a circuit. That’s why if one of the Christmas lights isn’t connected, the lights won’t turn on.

Mr. Levia: Can you tell us about some other things you can build with your circuitry kit?

Tara: I built a doorbell one time. My mom’s going to help me build some more things.

Mr. Levia: What questions or comments do you have for Tara?

[Several students raise hands.]

Tara: Ummm…. Christopher.

Christopher: My papa has some stuff like that. He built a radio!

Tara: I think I can build a radio too….

Christopher: I think you need a different kind of battery, like the bigger one.

Tara: [shrugs] I have some different kinds of batteries at home. These are double-A batteries, but I also have D batteries; those are the big ones. And the button batteries, too, are the small, round ones.

The discussion continues as students engage in an authentic conversation about the circuits, where Tara is using her emerging knowledge to provide information and explain processes, her third-grade peers are asking genuine questions to clarify understanding or seek more information, and the whole class is co-constructing shared knowledge about the topic of electricity. The engaging discourse relates to the NGSS third-grade standard 3-PS2-3, which involves asking questions to determine cause-and-effect relationships involving electronic interactions. The class has practiced this discourse routine daily since the beginning of the school year, so the students have good norms for discussion and continue on their own while their teacher steps back (Wiley & Sons, 1999-2024). So sweet and simple to me. Sometimes, the simplest examples assist with my comprehension.

In addition to more comprehensive assignments and lessons, teachers can build short, entertaining activities that keep students engaged and reveal insights about who they are. We can, too, consider having fun, icebreakers, games, and accolades (so much of what we’ve done within our class session) as a comparison of discourse moves and feelings about the online discussion (enjoyment and engagement) across the semester reveal about students with different uniqueness-seeking needs.

Trevor Boffone, a high school teacher in Texas, asked his students to submit their favorite song to a list at the start of the year. Now, at the beginning of each virtual class, he plays music to kick things off, incorporating students’ picks and his own. Throughout remote learning, Cathleen Beachboard, a middle school teacher in Virginia, says she’s including fun activities like show-and-tells and theme days. This fall, she also adopted a practice that her superintendent uses for staff meetings called “Three Cool Things I’ve Seen.” Once a week, Beachboard calls out three things she’s observed about students from classes that week that recognize them for their individuality.

“I know a lot of teachers are struggling right now to pull students in. I found the more encouragement and authentic praise we give to students, the more they dive in,” she said. These are scary times, but by giving students time to showcase their individuality, they will feel safe and ready to fully engage in learning” (Edutopia, George Lucas Educational Foundation 2024). I could not agree more.

Moving on, I’m grateful that my research project is nearly complete, building upon what we shared during our last class session; I hope my paper is coherent, well-organized, and very informative. Although I think I did a nice job of incorporating various theorists and applying their ideas to the phenomenon of autoethnography. I, too, am not sure if I’ve done a good job of a feasible question topic and introducing relevant details to substantiate my position.

I think I may need to give more attention to how autoethnography fits into my research proposal. However, I still have a bit more research to do in putting my literature review together. I know I will do an effective job of explaining the theory once I have completed proper research in the library.

When my research proposal is fully developed and complete, I beleive it will be a helpful device to all who embrace it. Overall, with all the essential assistance included, I think I may have a very strong proposal that will fulfill the parameters of this assignment quite well. 🤗




My Ending Post, Part 2

How time flies! When I write this blog, I remember the day starting to write my first blog. Just a few days ago I was still pondering on a question how I complete my weekly blog well, now it is the last blog post to end the research methodologies series.

Anyway, this week’s reading is “When students want to stand out: Discourse moves in online classroom discussion that reflect students’ needs for distinctiveness.” I was drawn attention to “Uniqueness-seeking and optimal distinctiveness” part, I think this part is one of the key parts in this article. It showed the importance of self-distinctiveness. Snyder and Fromkin considered that people are impacted by their desires to preserve a sense of modest self-distinctiveness. They experience negative feelings when they perceive themselves as being extremely similar to or different from others. Therefore, I think the uniqueness- seeking plays an important role, everyone wants to be special and unique. As Lynn and Snyder said, “as people perceive more similarity between themselves and others in the group, they become increasingly motivated to reaffirm their distinctiveness, creating a need for uniqueness.” Because of this situation, some researchers claimed the needs for uniqueness seeking and optimal distinctiveness are helpful concepts for comprehending human interaction. Lynn and Harris quoted, “consumers’ dispositional needs for uniqueness were positively related to their preference for unique shopping venues and to the desire for scarce, innovative, and customized products. Their hypothesis that needs for uniqueness would correlate negatively with consumer susceptibility to social influence, however, was not supported, suggesting that the needs to fit in and to be unique may function independently.”

About my draft paper, I am on the way to deal with my question, and I am considering if I should use qualitative or quantitative in my research. It is still deep diving here, but I complete my intro part. My intro still has some mistakes, so I may fix it many times. I WOULD LIKE TO SAY THANKS EVERYONE FOR READING MY BLOGS, ALTHOUGH IT SOMETIMES MAKE YOU GUYS CONFUSING. I CAN SAY THAT I HAVE A GOOD JOURNEY TO GAIN MY KNOWLEGDE.

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