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Self-Assessment of Research Mind-Set and Skills


In this paper, I provide a self-assessment of my research mind-set and skills. I also evaluate the link between researches and social changes. Finally, I explain a plan of the next steps I will take to become a researcher and scholar-practitioner. Therefore, I divide the body of this paper into three main parts: a self-assessment of my current research mind-set and skills, an evaluation of the relationship between researches and social changes. Finally, I present a plan of my next steps in becoming a researcher and scholar-practitioner.

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A Self-assessment of my Current Research Mind-set and Skills

As an individual who intends to build a career in public administration, I have come to appreciate the role of research initiatives in public administration; the role has been detailed by Sushma (2010) and Quah (2010). Through this learning program, I have gained enough knowledge about the importance of research tools in the development of public policies and how the tools have been used to deal with several significant issues that touch on public administration (Frederickson, 2010). Most importantly, this learning experience has made me to believe that in order to be an effective public administration scholar, one has to be conversant with quantitative, qualitative and mixed research methods.

I have also gained a number of research skills that will enable me to excel as a public administration scholar. In this case, the research skills I have gained include how to design and execute research projects by utilizing quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods; the ability to use the methods is important to anybody who aspires to become a successful scholar (Dickson & Hargie, 2010).

Most importantly, I have appreciated the fact that a public administration scholar cannot succeed in conducting research studies without the voluntary participation of other scholars and members of different communities (Raadschelders, 2011).

Furthermore, the learning process has enabled me to think critically, particularly in relation to issues of public administration. Besides, I am able to plan for data collection through different methods. In addition, I am also able to analyze data, interpret results and disseminate the final information resulting from a research study.

An Evaluation of the Relationships between Researches and Social Changes

Whenever the concept of research comes to my mind, I immediately think of my role in the process of a social change; this is because I have come to appreciate the role of research initiatives in the society. Therefore, in this section, I discuss how researches are linked to issues of social changes.

It is important to note that the success of social changes depends on new information. In this regard, a research offers an opportunity for members of a community to access new information that relates to social needs (Coy, 2011). In addition, a research process provides stakeholders with an opportunity to organize members of a community around common social problems (Reeb, 2013). Consequently, a research initiative offers a collaborative approach for evaluating, analyzing and constructing or reconstructing communities (Wilmsen, 2012). Research has also been significant in terms of enabling the identification of local means of conceptualizing and defining specific problems, resources and various needs of a community (Rubin & Babbie, 2011).

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With respect to public administration, research processes have been known to provide the most appropriate ground for an informed basis of reviewing, resisting and redefining matters that are related to political advocacies (Luton, 2010; McNabb, 2013). Moreover, the access to technologies has been democratized through different research initiatives. Through collaborative research programs, research partners have been able to work with communities in conserving cultural heritages, developing community resources and enhancing the process of democracy (McNabb, 2010).

Through mutual research plans, scholars are able to cooperate with communities in terms of promoting equity and justice in the context of diverse cultures within a community; this requires long-term commitments of various stakeholders (Wilmsen, 2012). Therefore, the tools of research have been very instrumental in assisting different communities and groups to exert their dominance over political, economic and social futures (Ledwith, 2011).

My Next Steps in Becoming a Researcher and Scholar-practitioner

Going through the doctorate learning process has enhanced my research skills. I must appreciate that this learning process has provided me with a strong base on which I am able to establish additional research skills, which will assist me in becoming a practical scholar in the field of public relations. To this effect, I intend to take certain steps in becoming a researcher.

My first step will be to work as an apprentice in the area of research. This implies that I intend to work competently under the supervision of a scholar with research experience, especially in the field of public administration. The apprenticeship will enable me to be able to take personal initiatives in research. After the apprenticeship, I will identify and work with colleagues who will also be involved in research issues that are related to my career. During this stage, I will focus on demonstrating my ability to take individual responsibilities and personal initiatives. In this regard, I plan to expertly complete research projects in collaboration with my colleagues.

After becoming an experienced scholar, I will engage in mentoring other upcoming researchers and scholars, who may include other individuals who would like to learn under apprenticeships. Besides, I also intend to begin conducting researches in various areas of public administration and later publish my work in various journals. Moreover, I will participate in the training of research students. In this regard, I will be able to share the knowledge I will have obtained from different research programs. To this end, I will have achieved the goal of becoming a researcher.


The process of conducting a self-assessment of my current mind-set and skills has allowed me to reflect on how much I have achieved in terms of gaining knowledge about quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods research studies. This program has enabled me to have a different view of how research initiatives can assist members of a community to effect social changes, especially with respect to public administration.

During my pursuit of masters, I was able to acquire some research skills. However, the doctorate program has provided me with additional skills in relation to technical writing and critical thinking (Sushman, 2010). Therefore, this self-assessment initiative has enabled me to discern the skills that I have acquired, and also to determine the steps that I need to take in order to become an established scholar with critical research skills.

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It is also important for me to mention that this self-assessment essay has given me the opportunity to reflect on the role that research projects play in the process of social changes. I have been able to critically think about how tools of research can help members of communities to generate new information that can assist in dealing with societal or communal problems.

List of References

Coy, P. G. (2011). Research in Social Movements, Conflicts and Change. Bingley, UK: Emerald Group Publishing.

Dickson, J., & Hargie, O. (2010). Skilled Interpersonal Communication: Research, Theory and Practice. Florence, KY: Routledge.

Frederickson, G. H. (2010). Social Equity and Public Administration: Origins, Developments, and Applications. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, Inc.

Ledwith, M. (2011). Community Development: A Critical Approach. Bristol, UK: The Policy Press.

Luton, L. S. (2010). Qualitative Research Approaches for Public Administration. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, Inc.

McNabb, D. E. (2013). Research Methods in Public Administration and Nonprofit Management: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, Inc.

Quah, J. (2010). Research in Public Policy Analysis and Management, Volume 19: Public Administration Singapore-Style. Bradford, GBR: Emerald Group Publishing Ltd.

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Raadschelders, J. (2011). The Future of the Study of Public Administration: Embedding Research Object and Methodology in Epistemology and Ontology. Journal of Public Administration Review, 71(6), 916-924.

Reeb, R. N. (2013). Community Action Research: Benefits to Community Members and Service Providers. Florence, KY: Routledge.

Rubin, A., & Babbie, E. R. (2011). Research Methods for Social Work. London, UK: Cengage Learning.

Sushman, G. (2010). Research in Public Management and Administration. Jaipur, IND: Global Media.

Wilmsen, C. (2012). Partnerships for Empowerment: Participatory Research for Community-based Natural Resource Management. Florence, KY: Routledge.

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