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For this exercise, you will practice how to read a research study in a peer-reviewed journal so that you can apply relevant communication research studies to resolving your workplace problem.* You should be able to use the material that you develop here in your analytical annotated bibliography. Before you tackle this exercise, please make sure you have read the Week 3 course materials.

 (*Remember, if you are not employed or cannot discuss your workplace, you should be using a communication problem from another organizational setting in which you are involved for your final project, such as school, church, or a community group.)

Objective: Completing this activity will help you be a competent researcher by giving you experience with finding and reading research studies published in peer-reviewed, scholarly journals in a library’s database. You will be able to use your information in your final project’s annotated bibliography. The journal articles you find and the notes you take will help justify your analysis and conclusions in your final paper.

Background: Please begin this exercise by reading the following information carefully.

Activity:

This week you must report on the research that you have been doing for your final project. The paper’s argument must be supported by relevant evidence from at least five authoritative sources, at least three of which must be peer-reviewed journals. For this exercise, you will analyze one research study on your communication theory and your workplace communication problem* from a scholarly, peer-reviewed journal.

Steps:

1. Your first step must be to come up with search terms.

  1. Think about your workplace problem.* Which communication context did you decide the problem involves?  
  2. Next, look at the list of communication theories in the Week 1 materials again. Does your chosen theory address issues in the same communication context as your problem?
  3. If your theory reflects the right communication context for your project, start your search for academic journals by pairing its name with words that describe your workplace issue.

2. Once you have figured out your search terms, use them in the UMGC library’s One Search tool at the following link: http://sites.umgc.edu/library/index.cfm#databases . Search its database of peer-reviewed journals for articles about research studies done on the communication theory that you would like to apply to your workplace communication problem. Make sure to check the box next to “scholarly journals only” at the start of your search!

3. When you find a published research study that seems relevant to your project, use the “Worksheet for Reading a Research Study Article in a Scholarly Journal” in the Week 3 learning resources to guide you through its contents. You will need to download the worksheet to type your answers directly into it.

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