Skip to main content
Search form
  • 00:05

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY: Core skills for new researchers, howto present impactful research.So in this video, we're going to lookat what needs to happen for your research to have impact.So we're going to discuss how we conclude effectively,how we can make robust recommendations, howto write up for impact.

  • 00:27

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: We'll discuss doing powerful and influential presentations,and finally, how to write papers and get yourself published.You've done your research, you'reready to write it up and get it out in the world,and you want it to be impactful.So what do we mean by that?We want it to make a difference.We wanted to hit home.

  • 00:47

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: We want it to have the ability to influence others,and to do that, the process of research continues.And there are certain skills thatwill help you make your research something thatcan impact change.So let's start with concluding.What do you need to do to write a good conclusion?

  • 01:09

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: One, you have to be on point.Your conclusion that should be something thatmeets your aims and objectives.So whatever your aim was, whatever your objectives were,can you check them off, do your conclusionspoint to you having done what you said you were going to do,and even more important were you able to answer your researchquestion?And have you communicated this clearly?

  • 01:30

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: So we're back to those communication skills.So you need to be on point.You need be very logical, really makingthose logical connections and links, so there's no gap.So I'm not wondering where did that come from?How does that fit with what's done?So very logical, always linking backto your question and your objective.So those conclusions are something

  • 01:52

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: that really we're working towards thembeing self-evident.The question is logically tied to the literature.It's logically tied to the methods.The methods are logically tied to the findings.The findings point to the conclusions.So we're really working toward something that'svery logical and organized.

  • 02:13

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: OK, so after the conclusion, we wantto look at making robust recommendations.Now are recommendations important?I think they are.We used do a lot of basic research and basic researchwas defined as research that was justknowledge for knowledge sake.Now, I don't think we do that as much anymore.

  • 02:33

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: I think we're really looking at a timewhere we're moved towards applied research, where we'retrying to make a difference.We're trying for situation improvement.We're trying to add that knowledge that can make thingsbetter in some way.So recommendations I think are becomingmore and more important.And so to have the skills in writing those up

  • 02:55

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: is something worth thinking about.So you need to be able to tie your recommendations backto the findings and conclusions.There should be no jump, no gap.It should be very clear where these recommendations arecoming from and how they flow from the findingsand the conclusions.You also need a bit of political nous.

  • 03:16

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: If your recommendations are that let's say a department needsto close or something, well, it'sreally hard to write that up in a way that's not offensive.Or let's say you're going to do an evaluationand you find that the program is a failure.Think about how you express that.

  • 03:37

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: So if you say that the new program did notmeet 70% of objectives and should not be continued,well, that's not really going to go over that well.But if you couch it as the department has facedseveral challenges, and it's not surprising to find that they

  • 03:60

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: while meeting objectives A through C, some of themwere a challenge.Some of the ways this may be addressed could be.So political nous makes your recommendations much morepalatable, and we want them to be palatable.Political nous is something that youcan use throughout the research process,and it is something that will get your research

  • 04:21

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: to have more purchase.The other skill you have to developin writing recommendations is to avoid wish lists.Avoiding writing something that can't happen, that there needsto be more money or children-- you can't say thingslike children need to lose more weight.Whatever it might be.I mean, if it's not something that can be actioned,

  • 04:43

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: don't write it.It needs to be something that is actionable,something that has step, something that has timelines.So not a wish list.And I would develop the skill of writing quick wins.What are things that you can recommendthat can happen right away without a lot of money,without a lot of approval.

  • 05:04

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: How can I write a quick wins, so that somethingcan happen right away?So that would be a really important skillin writing recommendations.Now, what about writing up the whole report?What's the tone and style you should take for that?There is a set formula for writing up research,

  • 05:24

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: and sometimes there's resistance to it,but let me give you the logic of it.The logic is that someone reading your reporthas a set of questions that they're asking you,and your report is addressing them in a logical orderthat they would be asking the questions.So what's your research about?That's the question that would be asked.

  • 05:45

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: You answer that with your title and your abstractand your introduction and your research question.Why are you interested in that particular project?Well, that's your rationale.What do you hope to achieve by studying this?That your aims and objectives, so we'reputting that as in order.I don't really know too much about it,give me a bit of background.That's where you give them the context in the lit review.

  • 06:08

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: How did you go about doing your study?That's your queue for research design and approach,your methodology and your methods.What did you find?Obviously, that's your findings.Why is this significant?Your conclusions, your implications.What do you think we should do about this?Your recommendations.

  • 06:29

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: So that's why we follow the set structurethat we do in a research report, sothat we can add to those conversational questions.If you don't do it in that order, people are confused.They don't know where to look.They don't know what's coming next.So it's a nice way of knowing the agenda and the objectiveof each section, as well as knowingwhy we ask for those sections in the order

  • 06:50

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: that we asked for them.As well as the conversation, the other thing I'd stressis making arguments.You really want to write up in a way that's argumentative,and by argumentative what I mean is you're making arguments.You're saying what-- it's almost like making thesis statements.I say to people every section should have a point.

  • 07:13

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: Well, your whole thesis should have a point.That's to answer your question.But every section should have a point.Every subsection have a point.Every paragraph should have a point,and every sentence should have a point.If I don't know what you're trying to argueand what you're trying to say, you'renot being argumentative enough.So you're constantly making arguments, which means

  • 07:35

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: you're writing purposefully.So you're writing with purpose.Your writing so that you can make arguments.You're not really there to tell people thingsas much as argue your point.So be strong.If you're writing all about something,it's hard to know what to include.If you're trying to convince someone of something,it's much easier to be very tight with your writing.

  • 07:59

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: So arguments and purposefulness, all right.Also when you're writing up, I wouldsuggest you be prepared to draft and redraft.And this is a skill you just need to have.You-- your first draft--oh, jeez, I remember what an advisor said to mewhen I gave him my first draft.He-- this is my for my doctoral thesis-- he said,

  • 08:19

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: so Zina, is this the best quality writing you can do?And it was actually quite heartbreaking,because I thought it was.When I look back at it after I didthe second draft and the third draft,I realized how bad it was.But I couldn't have got to the second draft without the first.I couldn't have gotten to the third draft without the second.

  • 08:40

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: And then I wouldn't get to a final draft.I write an awful lot.I have written several books, and peoplesay my style is very colloquial, and it soundslike I'm talking to them.Well, one would think if that wasthe case I should be able to just write itoff the top of my head instead of taking the seven or eightdrafts that it takes me to get to sound like myself.

  • 09:00

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: So don't underestimate the processof drafting and redrafting.Everyone needs to do it at every level.The other thing I'd think about in termsof writing up and redrafting and you get that final paper inis to really thinking-- think about makingyour presentations.And you want them to be impactful, right.

  • 09:21

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: You want your research to make a difference,so you do need to get it out there,and one way to do that is to make presentations,whether they be at your university,whether they are to community, whether they are to conferenceto make sure that you are taking the time to present your work

  • 09:44

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: and to present it with passion, to present a way whereyou're trying to motivate an audience to action.Where you're trying to get that audienceto understand the importance of what you've done,the significance of what you've done,the implications of what you've done,and what can happen on the basis of what you've done.And that's really the skills needed for impact.

  • 10:05

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: What has to happen?What should happen?Where do we go from here?Those are all questions that you shouldbe willing to answer if not in your writeup,then in your presentations.Now finally, if you want to make an impact,you need to get published.And how do we get published?Well, in academia the standard is journals,

  • 10:25

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: peer reviewed journals.And that's a good thing to work on with your supervisor.Think about seeing if there's a way of coauthoringto break into that.Do they know of any journals that are appropriate?Submit and resubmit, and you got to have a thick skin whenit comes to journals, because it isa very specific type of writing, but be prepared for that.

  • 10:46

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: If you're doing a PhD, certainly try to publish along the way,because you'll need that to get a job.So writing papers, but also think about other meansof publication as well.There could be a community pamphlet.It could be just posters that youmake depending on the audience.Who is the target audience?

  • 11:06

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: How can you communicate with them?What can you produce?Is there a book in it somewhere, right?Is it something that can even go in a newspaper?All the different ways there are to disseminate your workshould be looked at, because if you have pickeda significant question and you were passionate about it

  • 11:27

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: and you did want to disseminate those results,then you would want to think about who is my audienceand how can I reach them?Because I want to make an impact.I want people to know what I foundand what difference it might make in improving a situation.And isn't that what we're after?

  • 11:47

    DR. ZINA O'LEARY [continued]: We want impactful research, and we want to write up for impact,we want to present for impact, we want to publish for impact.And the skills that we need thereare around purposefulness and advocacyand having those communication skills.The goal being getting your work out there,so that it can make a difference.

Video Info

Series Name: Core Skills for New Researchers

Publisher: SAGE Publications Ltd

Publication Year: 2018

Video Type:Tutorial

Methods: Communicating and disseminating research

Keywords: authorship; conferences; interpretation (research); process approach (writing); public speaking; revision (written composition); Student writing models; transition from school to work ... Show More

Segment Info

Segment Num.: 1

Persons Discussed:

Events Discussed:



Dr. Zina O'Leary explains how to maximize the impact of research. O'Leary addresses how to organize and conclude research write-ups and how to reach audiences.

Looks like you do not have access to this content.

Core Skills for New Researchers: How to Present Impactful Research

Dr. Zina O'Leary explains how to maximize the impact of research. O'Leary addresses how to organize and conclude research write-ups and how to reach audiences.

Copy and paste the following HTML into your website