Student Perceptions of Staged Transfer to Independent Research Skills During a Four-year Honours Integrated Science Undergraduate Program
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We describe interim results of an ongoing longitudinal pedagogical study investigating the efficacy of the McMaster Honours Integrated Science Program (iSci). We describe the pedagogical methods we use to prompt research skill development in a model from instructor-dependence to independent original research. We also describe a tool we use to help students organise their group research during their first attempts. Finally, we discuss students’ perceptions of how well iSci develops their research skills.
Our results show that students are attracted to the iSci Program because of the opportunities for research-based learning and skills development. We also found that in-program students value research skill development as a tool for successful completion of their degree and for their future academic or career plans. We conclude that our study methods help identify areas where we can support our students by building their research confidence and, in particular, their time-management skills.