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Research Methodologies for the Creative Arts & Humanities: Home

Welcome to Research Methodologies Subject Guide

Welcome to our exploratory Guide to research methodology resources. It is aimed at post-graduate researchers in the creative arts and humanities and highlights current ECU Library online full text resources. The methodologies used in the sciences, the social sciences and education are not emphasised here, since they are already well covered elsewhere. They might, though, be applicable for some aspects of your research.

Gray and Malins (1993) have observed:
"There is no one universally accepted methodological approach to research within the arts. Methodologies associated with creative practice as research may move beyond traditional approaches to research, inclusive of the ongoing reflexive nature associated with the discipline/s. Through the methodologies and because of multiple shifts of interpretive paradigms in the creative arts, there could be a difference, creating tensionings, between the creative and reflective outcomes within the practice. Practice as research is identified as a 'generating' instrument. Research methods and processes are tailored to respond to practice and practice to research, continually re-orienting it to refine the research question through reflexive processes." (see Research procedures/methodologies for artists and designers )

The decision as to which methodology to adopt should not normally delay a research effort, especially writing activity, as the writing process focusses our reflections and helps crystallise what methods are intrinsically best for our own research journey. Often a key work by another which serves as a departure point for ones own research, will bring with it a research method for modelling, re-modelling or major adaptive change. Many research methodologies are of this organic type and cannot be easily categorised in a Guide such as this, though of course the researcher/writer employing them is bound to explicate them in the body of their work.
Discussion with your supervisor is the best way to decide on your research methodology.

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