This course aims to orient M.S. Environmental Science students in the Thesis track to the process of masters-level research in environmental science and studies, including completing a master’s thesis in the Department of Environmental Science at DePaul University. Students will complete and present their Research Proposal (inclusive of a systematic literature review and methods) for their master’s thesis, as well as become familiar with advanced research design and methods in the field of environmental science and studies.
After completing this course students will be able to:
- Situate themselves and their research in the context of the theory and practice of transdisciplinary sustainability and environmental science research;
- Perform a sophisticated and systematic search of the scientific and academic literature on a focused topic;
- Engage in a deep and thorough reading of scientific papers with the intent of identifying for potential application the research design and methods used in the paper;
- Know and be able to apply key elements of good research design;
- Understand the importance of methodological transparency in all phases of the design and conduct of scientific research, and create and communicate in writing a detailed, transparent, well-sourced research methods protocol; and,
- Propose scientific research in writing: that is, write a clearly-stated and answerable scientific research question, justify why this question is interesting in the context of the relevant scientific literature and applied environmental science context, and document detailed proposed methods for data collection and analysis (as appropriate to the student’s thesis research project).