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Turning Ideas into Research

Turning Ideas into Research
Theory, Design and Practice

© 2015 | 184 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd

How do you turn a really good idea into a really good question, and how do you turn this into successful research?


Barbara Fawcett and Rosalie Pockett use their expertise as supervisors and researchers to provide you with the frameworks and the theoretical and practical guidance you need to design, carry out and communicate your research effectively. Using a range of examples that relate research to the real world, they demonstrate:

  • how to develop research questions
  • how to select appropriate theoretical frameworks
  • how to integrate theoretical perspectives with empirical research
  • how to gather and interpret data
  • how to ensure that the research undertaken makes a difference.

The authors’ user-friendly approach emphasizes the importance of participation, collaboration and inclusivity, and examines worldviews and understandings of knowledge in order to enable greater critical reflection. Chapters provide guidance on achieving impact with your research, and feature reflective questions to enhance your engagement with the issues covered.


This text is the ideal companion as you set about transforming your ideas into robust research.

Part One: Thinking about research
Chapter One: Why do research?
Chapter Two: Partnerships in research
Chapter Three: Ethical considerations
Part Two: Thinking differently about knowledge and researching
Chapter Four: Creating viable research from good ideas
Chapter Five: Designing a research project: Qualitative researching
Chapter Six: Designing a research project: Quantitative and mixed method researching
Chapter Seven: Evaluative researching
Chapter Eight: Constructively and critically appraising research
Part Three: The impact of research
Chapter Nine: Research dissemination, sustainability, making a difference and writing for publication
Chapter Ten: Common pitfalls and dilemmas
Chapter Eleven: Concluding remarks

This unique research text begins and ends with respect for practitioners’ ideas and shows how they can be translated into practice-relevant knowledge.  It puts the practitioner into Practice-Research and makes a powerful contribution to a truly international Practice-Based Research Movement.

Irwin Epstein
Professor Emeritus, Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College, City University of New York

Turning vague ideas into credible research that can influence policy and practice requires an understanding of both research methods and the requirements of stakeholders. In this innovative volume, Barbara Fawcett and Rosalie Pockett tackle these mysteries which too often confound novice researchers.

Professor Beth Crisp
Deakin University

Fawcett and Pockett’s book is designed to encourage practitioners to explore their important questions and create well-designed research projects. All the resources are here to help beginning researchers to get started. And best of all there is an emphasis on making an impact.

Liz Beddoe
Associate Professor, School of Counselling, Human Services and Social Work, University of Auckland

This new work by Fawcett and Pockett will inspire any practitioner who is wanting to engage in research but is unsure where and how to start. Its emphasis on working with core practice principles (respect and integrity in particular) throughout every step of the research process will encourage practitioners to engage in research. Both thinking about research, and doing it, are introduced in logical and accessible ways. Practitioners and research students will gain the confidence to translate their 'ideas into research' by reading this excellent text.

Lou Harms
Associate Professor, Department of Social Work, University of Melbourne

The book has much to offer students of social research methods, higher degree students undertaking social research projects, and social work and human service practitioners contemplating a research project. It also contains useful material for critical reflection for more established researchers, who might benefit by pausing to take stock and reflect on the wider context and impact of their endeavours. Others engaged in service delivery, program and policy development may also find it a useful resource in thinking about evidence informed practice.

Bruce Lord
Bruce Lord BSW (Hons), MSW, PhD, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney

Sample Materials & Chapters

Turning Ideas into Research: Why do Research?

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ISBN: 9781446266717

ISBN: 9781446266700