The purpose of a research project will be defeated if at the end, you
get a poor grade from our supervisor or external examiner. Many students lack
the knowledge of the requirements needed to have a good grade, and so we will
be examining the various areas your supervisor or external examiner uses to
The areas can be classified under five headings:
What did you do?
Why did you do it?
How did you do it?
What did you get?
What did you contribute to knowledge?
WHAT DID YOU DO?
This seeks to examine you on the title of your project. You must be
familiar with the title. The project title should not be too lengthy. Short
titles are most preferable and accepted. The entire work would revolve normally
around that title.
WHY DID YOU DO IT?This refers to the significance or relevance and justification of the
study. You must be able to justify the study with tangible reasons why the
study is being researched. You must clearly state and itemize who and what
should gain from the study. You can brilliantly prove the existence of the
knowledge gap which the study seeks to fill up
HOW DID YOU DO IT?
This majorly addresses the methodology used in the research. In the
writing/defence, you must be able to tell us:
The sample size
The sampling method used and why you used that sampling method
The types of data (primary, secondary or a combination of both)
The instruments of data collection. For instance questionnaires, oral
or written interview, observation, case studies etc.)
The method of data collection (library search, self- administration
method, experiments post office etc) and explain why you used a particular
method. Here too, you should be able to state the scope of study or hypothesis
How did you measure your variables?
What measurement tool did you use and why did you use it?
During the writing process or during the defence either before the
external examiner or supervisor, you may be asked questions like:
What is your sample size?
What sampling method did you use and why?
What are the advantages and disadvantages of using:
A case study
Probabilistic or non-probabilistic method in your sampling technique
What are the merits or demerits of questionnaire, interview or
telephone method of data collection?
What is type I and Type II error?
What are the differences between a descriptive and analytical
You must be ready and prepared to provide your external examiner or
supervisor with the correct answer
The issue of hypothesis testing is also required. You must be familiar
with the type and numbers of hypotheses you formulated and how it was tested.
You must clearly state whether the hypotheses id descriptive or analytical.
Furthermore, you should be able to tell confidently the statistical tools used
like chi-square, linear or multiple regressions, ANOVA, T test, Z test Spearman
Rank correlation, etc. you must be able to state clearly why and how you used a
particular statistical tool. This also means that you must be familiar with the
formula, the method of computation and the interpretation of the results.
WHAT DID YOU GET Here, you must state precisely whether the results of your findings
are in agreement or disagreement with a previous literature you have reviewed
in the literature review section of your project. The major findings must be
stated first, after which, the implications of your findings must be discussed.
You must also talk about your conclusions drawn and your recommendations.
WHAT DID YOU
CONTRIBUTE TO KNOWLEDGE This majorly addressed your specific contributions. Either you are
developing a new model or modifying an existing model or agreeing with an
existing theory or refuting an existing theory or model. All these are
additions to a previous knowledge.
With all these put in perspective, you will definitely emerge with an
excellent grade at the end of your research.