A Dictionary of Research Concepts and Issues

By Dan Remenyi

Academic Conferences and Publishing International Ltd, 2014 

Review by Peter Norrington

The book consists of a clear, three‐page preface, and '600+ essential concepts and issues required for successful academic research'. That, at least, shows just how many terms (631, here) a new student, at any university level, may be expected to grasp, and often quite quickly. Indeed, a quick‐dip guide looks like a good idea.

Described with a clear warning that the definitions provide a starting point for understanding what the terms mean, this is a 'ready‐reckoner approach', not an academic encyclopaedic approach.

There's an undeclared bias towards sociology/management, so to the extent it is of use to some, other research areas may not find this quite as essential.

The links provided aren't enough to give a balanced view (the choice of references is sometimes odd, and dated), for lecturers to use without thought, or students without guidance.

If an electronic document, this might be easy to search for related terms; on paper, it needs more indication of cross‐referenced terms. Why are the alphabetical entries numbered? Why is a quarter of the book blank space?

The links provided aren't enough to give a balanced view (the choice of references is sometimes odd, and dated), for lecturers to use without thought, or students without guidance.

Some of it makes an interesting quick read, perhaps as a checklist. The problems are various: inaccuracy, incompleteness (even for a ready‐reckoner), missing counterparts, peculiar entries, touches of bias, the mixing of research terms with student progress terms.

How to use it: Give it to your students as a discussion challenge?

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