What makes a good research question?

From Scribber: https://www.scribbr.com/research-process/research-questions/

I searched Google Scholar for the answer to this question, but I came up with clinical answers, so I turned to Google Search to look further.

  • “A well-defined and specific research question guides the study design” (Key Components of a Research Paper, n.d.). 
  • “A research question should require analysis to provide an answer” (Key Components of a Research Paper, n.d.).
    • All research questions should be:
      • Focused on a single problem or issue
      • Researchable using primary and/or secondary sources
      • Feasible to answer within the timeframe and practical constraints
      • Specific enough to answer thoroughly
      • Complex enough to develop the answer over the space of a paper or thesis
      • Relevant to your field of study and/or society more broadly (Developing Strong Research Questions, 2019)
  • A research question should be in response to a research problem.


Developing strong research questions. (2019, April 16). Scribbr. https://www.scribbr.com/research-process/research-questions/

Key components of a research paper. (n.d.). Key Components of a Research Paper. https://ies.ed.gov/ncee/edlabs/infographics/pdf/REL_SE_Key_Components_of_a_Research_Paper.pdf

How Privacy Has Impacted Digital Technologies

For this assignment, I was in a group with Michael and Agia. We were tasked with discussing how the issue of privacy has impacted digital technologies. Michael is discussing control of data, and services we select and how that affects student privacy. Agia is discussing Zooming, and policy supporting privacy. I will be discussing privacy training and privacy breaches.

Privacy training is something in which I have personal experience. Users must be educated to protect themselves from threats (Kalloniatis, 2021). Many social media sites will walk you through their privacy settings, so you know how to protect your information. Some people must protect other people’s data, such as in the fields of healthcare and elections. At my place of work, we must undergo confidential information management training, and we have to recertify regularly through an online module. Gamification is one way that has been suggested to make privacy training more engaging (Kalloniatis, 2021). I think this is true if solid instructional design principles are still used.

Privacy breaches are something no one wants to handle, and “certain characteristics of SNS open up possibilities for new kinds of privacy breaches. These breaches primarily result from the fact that users reveal detailed information to the public and map their real-life social relationships more explicitly than they would in emails or on public forums” (Gurses et al., 2008). First, users must learn to protect their data. Social media sites like Facebook offer different privacy settings to decide how much information to share publicly. However, what happens when accounts are hacked? There are services that will help you if you happen to experience online identity theft, and in some cases a hacked account will just be dealt with by changing a password. Users have to accept that anything they put online could be compromised and they should manage their online identity with that in mind.


Gurses, S., Rizk, R., & Gunther, O. (2008). Privacy Design in Online Social Networks: Learning from Privacy Breaches and Community Feedback. 11.

Kalloniatis, C. (2021). The Role of Gamification in Software Development Lifecycle. BoD – Books on Demand.

Unit 3 reflection on structures and my DIDP

I think the impact of different structures on my digital identity and digital presence plan is that I will have to define which platforms use which type of structure. There are the main structures, and then there are also hybrid structures that should be considered. For example, in the group-set structure, “communities of interest gather due to shared interests, and typically engage in more or less formal ways. They are often bound by interest in a topic more than by the group itself, though this may change over time” (Anderson and Dron, 2014, p. 80). Some of my groups on Discord and Slack may fall into this category, because they are based on shared interests and have rules and structure to them.

When considering different structures, I wonder if different structures facilitate a different identity and presence. When there are rules in place, then your digital identity and presence can be shaped by those rules. For example, if a group had a rule that said you couldn’t talk about the colour red and that was a big part of your identity, then your identity in that group would be a lot different than a place where you could speak openly about the colour red.


Anderson, T., & Dron, J. (2014). Teaching Crowds: Learning and Social Media. Athabasca University Press. https://doi.org/10.15215/aupress/9781927356807.01

My Visual Network Map

Heather’s Visual Network Map

This is a map of my visual network. I chose to keep it quite vague and used platforms instead of group names. It is interesting that different types of connections are connected to their own digital platforms. I also have more connections on some platforms that aren’t connected to my friends, school cohort, or work colleagues. Discord is the only platform where I don’t feel particularly connected to anyone in the communities I am a part of. Of course, other platforms have varying levels of connection as well. Overall I usually like to compartmentalize different kinds of connections and digital environments allow me to do that.

My Digital Identity and Digital Presence Plan

Students “must be effective architects, narrators, curators, and inhabitants of their own digital lives” (Campbell, 2009, p. 59). Royal Roads has given me this opportunity by giving me a blog that I can write in during my program and take with me when I am done. The course I am completing now has challenged me to increase my public presence on social media. My overall goal and purpose for cultivating my digital presence and identity is to connect with my friends, family, and peers by sharing pieces of information about my life and interests on social media platforms. I also want to be able to ask questions and obtain information from my peers.

I will connect with others, and share and obtain information, by posting regularly on Facebook (private account) and liking and commenting on other people’s posts; posting regularly on LinkedIn (public account) and liking and commenting on other people’s posts when appropriate, and looking for more people in my field to connect with on that website; reading and contributing on the 2022 MALAT cohort Slack group; conversing with others on Line messenger; consuming information and asking questions on Discord; creating shared documents in Google Docs and discussing them over Zoom; and writing blog posts on WordPress and commenting on my cohort’s blogs.

I am used to working with social media, so I don’t think I have many knowledge or skills gaps. I plan to be cautious when posting publicly on LinkedIn because according to boyd (2010), characteristics of networked publics are persistence, replicability, scalability, and searchability. I want to make sure I present a positive digital identity and presence to the public.

The measures of success for this project will mainly be that I post, like, comment, and converse consistently. I will look at the number of connections I add on LinkedIn, and I will track the number of likes and impressions on my posts to see what kinds of content are the most popular.

I look forward to the results of this experiment.


boyd, D. (2010). Social Network Sites as Networked Publics: Affordances, Dynamics, and Implications. In Z. Papacharissi (Ed.), Networked Self: Identity, Community, and Culture on Social Network Sites (pp. 39–58). New York, NY: Routledge.

Campbell, G. (2009). A Personal CyberinfrastructureEducause Review, 44(5), 58–59.

Resident-Visitor Typology Map

Figure 1

Resident-Visitor Typology Map

Above is the map of my technology use based on the resident-visitor typology. I am usually very private in online spaces, although that is now changing with the MALAT WordPress blogs. I am also interested in becoming more of a resident on LinkedIn, but I am having trouble trying to figure out what to post that would be valuable for myself and my readers.

Although I have private accounts on services such as Line and Facebook, I put them on the resident side because they still leave a footprint and they are “a place, perhaps like a park or a building in which there are clusters of friends and colleagues whom they can approach and with whom they can share information about their life and work” (White & Cornu, 2011). I think the public and private dichotomy of technology is not fully addressed by the resident-visitor typology. Residents can have private footprints and private spaces “where the distinction between online and off–line is increasingly blurred” (White & Cornu, 2011). Although it is private, I am not a visitor. I feel that engaging in private spaces allows group discussion and development of ideas without exposing yourself to the public and the potential safety concerns that come with that.


White, D. S., & Cornu, A. L. (2011). Visitors and Residents: A new typology for online engagement. First Monday. https://doi.org/10.5210/fm.v16i9.3171

Virtual Symposium Thoughts

This week I attended the Virtual Symposium as part of LRNT 521 in the MALAT program. I found the speakers to be articulate and well-informed. In this blog post I will discuss my thoughts regarding two of the videos I watched.

Einarson (2022) discussed his experience in the learning and technology field. I was surprised to learn the definitions of pedagogy and andragogy because often pedagogy is used to refer to adults as well. I have heard it used this way by professionals in the field, specifically when I was interviewing for job positions. In the future I will be sure to specifically refer to andragogy, since I work in adult education. He also talked about building community. This concept struck me as very important, especially in our MALAT program. The bonds we, the students, have started to build has already been extremely helpful in forming a sense of community and even in completing our assignments. Finally, he discussed bringing your full self to whatever you are doing. I think this is an intriguing idea, but also something that I personally struggle with for reasons that I will not delve into.

Childs and Davis (2021) discussed critical reading and writing. I found everything they discussed to be helpful preparation for the work we will be doing. In particular, I agreed with the idea that the reader should first “skim” the article, then “scan,” then do “first sentence reading” and “survey reading” (Childs & Davis, 2021). This breaks down the article into more manageable pieces and promotes understanding. By skimming first, the reader gets a good overall idea of the article. Then, by scanning, the reader can pick out important pieces of information. A first sentence reading allows the reader to go deeper and consume the parts of the article that are relevant to them. By writing a short summary of the article, the reader can get a good idea of what the article is about, and if they combine those summaries with summaries that others have written, the reader can piece together a richer picture of the articles they have to review. “Strukelj and Niehorster (2018) found that skimming resulted in lower comprehension scores than regular or thorough reading. It is important to keep in mind that any specific behavior has the potential to be helpful or harmful depending on the situation and the way in which it is implemented” (Sutherland & Incera, 2021). Therefore, it is important to follow through and do all the steps and not just skimming.

Another point of interest that was discussed was the idea that writing is a creative act (Childs & Davis, 2021). I resonated with this idea and felt empowered by it because I enjoy creating things. By looking at my assignments as creations, and thinking about creation as a process, I can find a greater sense of meaning while reducing negative feelings that often come along with completing assignments.

I look forward to watching more of these webinars as time allows.


Childs, E., & Davis, L. (2021, April 14). Critical Reading and Writing at the Graduate Level [Webinar]. University of British Columbia. https://bit.ly/DavisChilds2021VSAcademicwriting

Einarson, E. (2022, April 12). Designing from a place of Indigenous knowledge systems. [Webinar]. Zoom. https://bit.ly/EEMALATVS2022

Strukelj, A., & Niehorster, D. C. (2018). One page of text: Eye movements during regular and thorough reading, skimming, and spell checking. Journal of Eye Movement Research11(1), Article 1. https://doi.org/10.16910/jemr.11.1.1

Sutherland, A., & Incera, S. (2021). Critical Reading: What Do Faculty Think Students Should Do? Journal of College Reading and Learning, 51(4), 267–290. https://doi.org/10.1080/10790195.2021.1887777

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