Horticultural Research A

Course CodeBHT118
Fee CodeS3
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment
Learning to Research is a Critical Skill for the Future
 
The problem with education today is that everything is changing so fast, that the things you learn today can be out of date tomorrow; and what you need to know the next day, might be difficult to find.
 
If you know how to properly research information though; you will have a heightened ability to find, evaluate and use information that may have otherwise eluded you.
 
It isn't only research scientists that need research skills -everyone working in horticulture today needs to understand research, if you are to stay at the cutting edge of the profession. 
 

Lesson Structure

There are 7 lessons in this course:

  1. Determining Research Needs
    • Overview
    • Identifying research needs
    • The research goal
    • The research question
    • Other questions to clarify the research goal
    • Sources of information
    • What information is required
    • Depth and bredth of data
    • Setting realistic research parameters
    • Constraining factors
  2. Searching for Information
    • Kinds of exploratory research
    • Primary data research
    • Secondary data research
    • Literature reviews
  3. Research Methods
    • Key research terms
    • Experimentation
    • A controlled environment
    • Field trials
    • Steps in collection and analysis of data
    • Conducting a crop trial
    • Setting up a Comparison trial
    • Running a trial: records and recording
    • Evaluating the trial
    • Interviewing skills: procedure, asking questions, types of questions
    • Ways of handling difficult questions
  4. Using Statistics
    • Overview: Descriptive statistics, Inferential statistics
    • Official statistics
    • Reasons for using statistics
    • Advantages of statistics
    • Statistics: as guides and motivators
    • Disadvantages of statistics
    • Issues to consider
    • Descriptive statistics
    • Observed and expected rates
    • Confidence intervals
    • Standardizing
    • Reliability of statistics
    • Presenting statisticsa: pie charts, bar charts, histograms
    • Descriptive statistics: mean, median, mode, variation, variance, standard deviation, correlation, probability, etc
  5. Conducting Statistical Research
    • Collecting quantitative data
    • Conducting a survey
    • Form of data
    • Planning a formal survey
    • Designing a questionnaire
    • Common problems
  6. Research Reports
    • Report writing tips
    • Structure of a report
    • The report online
    • Research papers
    • Referencing
  7. Reporting on a Research Project
    • This lesson brings together what you have learned in previous lessons, in terms of critical assessment of other authors research papers or reports, and demonstrating your report writing skills.

Aims

  • Conduct preliminary investigations to determine areas where there is a valid need for research in social, technological and environmental issues that impact on horticulture today
  • Conduct an information search into a defined issue related to social, technological and environmental issues that impact on Horticulture today.
  • Explain research methods, including experimental techniques, commonly used.
  • Demonstrate and explain the basic statistical methods used for research.
  • Conduct a minor statistical research project into a well defined area, relevant to your area of study.
  • Prepare a research report in a format which conforms to normal industry procedures.
  • Demonstrate critical analytical thinking, reviewing skills and report writing skills

What can good research skills do for you?

Good research skills will enable you identify emerging trends and changes that affect horticulture, and to help formulate better strategies, practices and uses for horticulture. Your ability to conduct and present research can lead to innovations that address crucial local and global issues, or to the provision of cutting-edge horticultural services. This course will develop your ability to research and present a critical, written and numerical assessment of information related to social, technological, environmental and economic issues that impact on Horticulture today. Good research skills will enable you be an innovator in horticulture, and to identify trends, issues, and needs that can create new opportunities and directions in horticulture.

WHO IS THIS COURSE FOR?

This course will be of value to people wishing to work in:

  • Horticulture research
  • Teaching
  • Horticultural science
  • Plant breeding
  • Botany
  • General horticulture

 

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