Research Project Requirements


Your Research Project may be initiated as soon as you have taken IP&T 672.


The project should be a data-based investigation of a conclusion-oriented question. (Decision oriented investigations are most generally considered to be evaluation projects.) The project report and comprehensive exam for your Research project should be written and submitted together as one document. As well, the project report should be of publishable quality and should be submitted to an appropriate professional journal at the completion of the project. Procedural instructions for meeting the Research project and Comprehensive Exam requirements are described below.

STEP 1: Faculty Sponsor
STEP 2: Enroll for IP&T 677R
STEP 3: Prepare Your Project
STEP 4: Complete the Project
STEP 5: Write the Research Project
STEP 6: Faculty Sponsor Evaluation and Final Grade
STEP 7: Comprehensive Exam
Prospectus Approval Form

Faculty Sponsor

A student desiring to complete a Research Project must identify a suitable project in consultation with a member of the faculty and obtain the consent of the faculty member to serve as their sponsor for the project. In most instances, a student will co-author the instructional package with the faculty sponsor to submit it for publication. This sponsor may or may not be a member of the student's committee.

Enroll for IP&T 677R

Enroll for three hours of IP&T 677R credit the semester the work is to be completed.

Prepare Your Project
  1. Prepare a prospectus - Prepare a prospectus describing the proposed project and submit a copy to the Department Chair, along with the Prospectus Approval Form signed by the faculty sponsor (see page 4). The Prospectus and Approval Form must be submitted to the Department Chair before the work is begun, and no later than the second week of the semester in which the work is to be completed.NOTE: It is desirable that students determine what their Research Project will deal with during the latter part of the semester prior to the semester in which they will work on the project.Students should retain a copy of the Prospectus Approval Form in their own files.
  2. Must be a defensible effort - In some instances a project will be the outgrowth of one of the two research courses (IP&T 672 or 673) or an Internship. When this is the case, steps should be taken to ensure that the effort is defensible in terms of the three hours credit that are awarded for the project. This is accomplished by establishing in writing that the two activities are going to be combined and having the joint effort approved by the faculty sponsor and the Department Chair in advance.The Research and Comprehensive Exam requirement may be challenged by making a formal request in writing to the Department Chair and by submitting a report for a research project conducted prior to entering the program. This report should include the components described in Step 5. Such products will undergo faculty review. This is accomplished by advanced approval of the faculty sponsor and the Department Chair.It is not permissible to be awarded course Internship credit and project credit for the same activity unless the total time devoted to the activity is commensurate with the total amount of credit being awarded and approved by the faculty sponsor. Double credit is not permissible.
  3. Funding - The Instructional Psychology & Technology Department does not provide direct financial support for projects. However, the student's time and expenses related to a project may be funded by a sponsoring faculty member or agency. If a student is unable to find a sponsor who is able to fund the project, the costs must be borne by the student.
Complete the Project

After the approval of the prospectus, the student may proceed with the research project under the supervision of the faculty sponsor. The student will submit those documents required by the faculty sponsor to the department. The faculty sponsor will provide the criteria for each required document.

When a member of the faculty agrees to serve as a sponsor for a research project, he agrees to provide the student individual consultation regarding the project on a regular basis and to review the student's work systematically. How the research project is accomplished is left up to the discretion of the faculty sponsor. The only stipulation is that the faculty sponsor agrees to review whatever the student writes in connection with the project. At the outset of the project you and your sponsor should determine specifically what the sub-tasks are going to be and agree on deadlines for completing each sub-task. The schedule and the prospectus should reflect these deadlines.

Write the Research Project

Once the student has carried out the above requirements, the report should be submitted to the faculty sponsor along with the instruments used.

In preparing your research project report, you should carefully follow the style guidelines outlined in the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. You should consult the APA Guidelines web site prepared by the IP&T Department that outlines some of the ways to avoid the most common errors found in student papers and enumerates some variations from the guidelines recommended for dissertations and other student papers. You should also access the Microsoft Word Heading Styles Tutorial on how to use styles in Microsoft Word to facilitate the implementation of the APA heading guidelines. This tutorial includes a link to a Microsoft Word template document that includes all the necessary styles already defined. An alternate style may be used if the report will be submitted to a journal that uses a different style.

It is not necessary to have your research study accepted for publication to receive credit; but it is necessary for you to submit a copy of your report to a professional journal for publication. If for some reason you or your faculty sponsor do not feel that the report should be submitted for publication, but that it should still be counted as a research project, you will be required to write a nonpublication justification memo and have it signed by your faculty sponsor.

Your research report will be judged according to this rubric (click link for download).

Faculty Sponsor Evaluation and Final Grade

When the faculty sponsor is satisfied the student has demonstrated sufficient originality and quality in the work and completed the requirements mentioned above, he will sign the attached evaluation report (see page 5) verifying the student has satisfied the research requirements.

The student will then submit two copies of the final project, along with the faculty sponsor evaluation report to the Department Secretary. The Department Secretary will then send the project out to two additional readers for review (see Step 7). The student will receive a final grade for the project after the project passes these two readers. The sponsor and readers will each grade the project, the final grade will be an average of the three grades received. The grade will not be submitted to the Records Office until this Comprehensive Exam has been passed.

Comprehensive Exam

The completed project documents will be submitted by the Department Secretary to two additional IP&T faculty members for their evaluation. Although these reviewers will focus on the literature, rationale, and critique sections of the report, they will also address all other sections. The reviewers should judge the quality of the research project and Comprehensive Exam along with the dimensions listed on the Faculty Evaluation Report form (see page 5). (Note that these reviewers are not required to judge the originality of the work, or determine if the research requirements have been met. This is the responsibility of the faculty sponsor. However, they are required to review the quality of all aspects of the project as outlined on the Faculty Evaluation form.) The results of these evaluations will be submitted on the Evaluation of Examination (56) Form to the Department Chair.

Prospectus Approval Form:

The Research Project Prospectus Approval Form can be downloaded here:

Word Format (.doc)