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Information Technology Research — A Practical Guide for Computer Science and Informatics



(Citation)Citation information

M. S. Olivier. Information Technology Research — A Practical Guide for Computer Science and Informatics. 3rd. Pretoria, South Africa: Van Schaik, 2009. isbn: 978-0-627-02758-1


Information Technology Research — A Practical Guide for Computer Science and Informatics is targeted at senior students in any of the many branches of Information Technology — including Computer Science, Informatics and Information Systems. It is intended to introduce the students to the operation of the research process in these subjects to an extent that will enable them to identify, observe and master the methods used in their particular fields of speciality. Students who need such guidance are, primarily, those embarking on a study towards a research-based qualification (such as Masters and Doctoral degrees) and those who are busy with a formal research methods course to prepare them for such research.

The premise of the book is that one learns to do research by studying existing research reports (such as journal and conference papers, dissertations and theses). The book is intended to act as a guide for the student during this process: It highlights the essential aspects of various facets of the research process (including the logic of various research methods, writing of proposals and reports, the use of statistics, and so on). The exercises at the end of chapters are, firstly, intended to encourage students to learn from published reports. Exercises are also intended to stimulate students to think about applying each method to a research problem of their own. Finally, exercises point students to related topics that have not been covered in the chapter.

The first edition of the book was published by the author and used successfully at a number of universities and technical universities. The second edition contained new material on research ethics, the research process and quantitative methods. The third edition discusses all the themes the second edition did. Where necessary, information has been updated. (Academic search engines, for example, did not exist when the second edition was published.) The third edition also adds useful information about the selection of conferences where research results may be presented. In addition it adds two new chapters: one on how to apply for research funding and another on the assessment of researchers.

(Authoritative version on publisher's site)Definitive version

The definitive version of the paper is available from the publisher.

(BibTeX record)BibTeX reference

author={Martin S Olivier},
title={Information Technology Research --- A Practical Guide for Computer Science and Informatics},
publisher={Van Schaik},
address={Pretoria, South Africa},
eISBN={978-0-627-02874-8} )