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Applied Research

Course Details

Course Number
RADS 4913
Section Number
RADS 4913
Fall 2016
Classroom Number
Days & Times


Gary D. Morrison MEd, RT(R), MRT (view Profile)


Publication Manual of the American Psychological A
6th ed. (2nd printing) Washington, DC
Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course, a student will be able to:

  • Apply appropriate research methods.
  • Formulate an appropriate research question.
  • Compose a publication quality substantive research paper that reviews previously published articles.
  • Format this research paper which is a literature review in appropriate APA style (no original research is allowed).
Course Expectations

This course is divided into six (6) assignments and all assignments must adhere to the following requirements:

  • IBM compatible format (not MAC)
  • Word 97 or newer version (not Microsoft Works or WordPerfect)
  • Times New Roman, 12 point font ONLY 
  • 1" margins on all sides
  • Double-spaced

The assignments should be written using standard technical writing skills. This includes appropriate spelling, grammar, sentence structure, transitions, text flow, currency of knowledge, and scope of research.

When graded assignments are returned, they should be reviewed for corrections/changes prior to submission of the next section. Frequently, the same errors are made in multiple sections & this could be avoided by reviewing graded assignments in a timely fashion.

Assignment 1: Request for Research Question and Outline Approval Form (3%)

This course only allows topics related to Radiologic Sciences (which emphasize the role of technologists), not papers related to clinical radiology (which emphasize the role of radiologists). For example, "Factors Contributing to Job Satisfaction for MRI Technologists" is acceptable, but "Treatment of Obstructive Bowel Syndrome" is not acceptable. Also for example, "Positions for Radiographic Demonstration of the Trauma Knee" is acceptable, but "Diagnosis of Cerebral Hemorrhage" is not acceptable.Topics cannot deal with subjects that are outside the scope of practice of the radiographer.

The outline should be based on published literature. Students will not develop their own surveys or conduct experiments to write this paper.

Students must complete the Request for Research Question and Outline Approval Form, include a detailed outline of the paper (please look at the sample outline for the amount of detail required), and include APA formatted reference list. The assignment must be submitted to the Assignment I Dropbox in Desire to Learn (D2L) as a single file by the due date. References older than 5 years will generally not be accepted but, depending on the topic, source, etc., may be permitted at the discretion of the instructor.

All parts of this assignment MUST be submitted as ONE single document through the assignment dropbox.

Assignment 2: Title Page (2%)
Title page: pages 23, 24, 41, & 229 of the 6th edition of the APA Manual describes the components of the title page. Use the sample title page available under Course Materials on the course homepage because it includes additional information not included on the APA version. It helps distinguish assignments submitted in different classes.

Assignment 3: Reference List (10%)

Refer to Chapters 6 and 7 in the APA Manual for an explanation on how to construct a reference list. Also, refer back to RADS 3503; you should have your graded reference list from that class. A minimum of eight (8) scholarly references are required.

NOTE ON REFERENCES: References should be from a variety of sources with at least 8 of references being from peer review journals or other scholarly works. Peer review journals use an editorial review board that evaluates the article for accuracy.Publications or magazines like ASRT Scanner, RT ImageAdvanceDecisions in Imaging Economics, and Applied Radiology are not peer-reviewed. Journals such as Radiologic TechnologyRadiologic Science & Education, and Radiology Management are peer-reviewed. You should be able to look at the inside cover of a journal or on a web site to see if the journal has a review board. Most likely if you cannot find anything about a review board then the journal is not peer reviewed. The journal homepage should also indicate if the journal is peer-reviewed.

Assignment 4: Body (45%)
The body of this paper is to include the following sections: introduction, methods, discussion, conclusion, and suggestions for future research.  All sections except the Introduction should have a header - see APA Manual page 62 Section 3.03. This part of the paper must be no less than 5 pages and no more than 7 full length pages (Times New Roman, 12 pt font).  An expanded explanation of each component follows. 

You MUST include your complete revised reference list with this assignment as part of the document, not separately.

Introduction - (includes background, purpose, research question, hypothesis) - pp. 27-28 (APA Manual). This is where you develop the reason for the problem. Note: The word Introduction is not used as a header.  The first section of the paper is assumed to be the Introduction section.

Methods - (how references were found and what resources were used). The APA Manual describes methodology for original research.  Because no original research is allowed in this course, use the methods section to describe how information was obtained. 

Example:  Searches were conducted using the following key words: knee injuries, radiology, radiography, infection control, (etc. to include all the appropriate search terms).  Academic First Search, ERIC, EbscoHost were the primary databases used and were accessed through the Midwestern State University Library.  

Discussion - pp. 35-36 (APA Manual). Compare the literature with the approved research question.  This is where all the literature is pulled together so that the reader doesn't have to read each separate source.  The writer's job for this section is to enlighten the reader by synthesizing the literature and reporting on it. For example one can formulate thoughts based on the literature, but a personal opinion is not appropriate in a research literature review.  The writer is reporting on what was found; therefore, it must be supported with reference citations. There should be at least 2 references per major section of the body of the paper. Do not use personal pronouns such as "I found this" or "we see this".

For example if this were written:

Firms must take the initiative in retaining gifted and competent employees to effectively deal with this expected predicament. Proactive exploring is the catalyst for discovering various methods that could improve the retention rate of radiologic technologists and provide direction for organizations looking to implement and maintain a successful employee retention program.

While this may be true, it must be backed by research so here is how it might have been rewritten:

During this literature review, a common theme was evident among many of the authors (Ackerman, 2000; Bated, 2003; Devlin, 2000; Myers, 2006; & Zuckerman, 2007) that organizations must take the initiative in retaining gifted and competent employees.  It appears that proactive exploring is the catalyst for discovering various methods that could improve the retention rate of radiologic technologists and provide direction for organizations looking to implement and maintain a successful employee retention program.  For example, Veale' (2008) said, "Passive attitudes towards employee retention are no longer effective.  Healthcare organizations are bleeding to death by ignoring the loss of talent" (p. 45).  
It seems then that the answer to the question of how to keep talent is to contemplate, renovate, innovate, and create new best practices to achieve institutional goals and thereby add to the existing body of knowledge on radiographer retention.  Watts (2005) and Johnston (2007) support these notions by strongly encouraging healthcare organizations to work with employees instead of against them and to actively engage employees in the development of best practices for retention. 

Conclusion - See the sample paper under Course Materials on the course home page. This is where you remind readers of the purpose, what was discovered, and if the findings were in line with the research question. Remember, this sectionshould be no longer than 1 page. 

Suggestions for future research - Explain where the literature was lacking and possible future research studies.

References - This is where you will place the reference list you corrected from your instructor's comments. 

Appendices - (if needed, not encouraged) - Place any graphics, tables, etc. after the references. 

All parts of this assignment must be submitted as ONE single document through the assignment dropbox.

Assignment 5: Abstract (10%)
See page 25, 26 and 229 in the APA Manual. The abstract should be between 150 and 250 words. Explain what the focus of the paper is and a little bit about the literature. Sell your paper here. Write something that is going to make people want to read this. The abstract is essentially a snapshot of the entire paper; it is what hooks people and convinces them to continue reading. Write the abstract after you complete the paper.

Assignment 6: Final Paper (30%)
This research paper is to be a substantial manuscript (5-7 full length pages for the body). The length of the body of the paper is in addition to the title page, abstract, appendices, and reference list. The paper MUST reflect baccalaureate level effort and MUST incorporate the suggestions for revision provided by the instructor for assignments #1 - #5.  It should demonstrate the student's ability to gather and discriminate pertinent resources, synthesize information from a variety of sources, apply new information to a topic, and correctly use the APA Reference Style. 

All parts of this assignment must be submitted as ONE single document through the assignment dropbox. If you have trouble with the dropbox, then the best time to determine that will be well in advance of the due date, NOT at the last minute.

Grading Standards

Assignment                                Weight

Research Question & Outline          3%
Title Page                                         2%
Reference List                                10%
Body of Paper                                 45%
Abstract                                           10%
Final Paper                                      30%

Grade Scale

A = 100 – 89.5
B =   89.4 – 79.5
C =   79.4 – 69.5
D =   69.4 – 59.5
F =  Below 59.5

Final Exam 12/12/2016 Self-scheduled
Submission Format Policy

All assignments must adhere to the following requirements:

  • IBM compatible format (not MAC)
  • Word 97 or newer version (not Microsoft Works or WordPerfect)
  • Times New Roman, 12 point font ONLY
  • 1" margins on all sides
  • Double-spaced

Students are required to submit all assignments in the appropriate assignment drop box in D2L. Do not email or fax assignments unless told specifically to do so by your instructor. Do not wait until the last minute to submit in case you have technical difficulties. If you have difficulties submitting any assignments, contact your instructor immediately so that problems can be resolved by the deadline. Technical difficulties need to be addressed through the D2L help link.

Note: You may not submit a paper for a grade in this class that already has been (or will be) submitted for a grade in another course, unless you obtain the explicit written permission of me and the other instructor involved in advance.
Late Paper Policy

Assignments must be submitted via the D2L Assignments page by the date & time published in the course Calendar; NO late submissions will be accepted unless approved beforehand. Submissions after the cut-off date & time will NOT be accepted & a grade of zero (0) will be assessed.

Plagiarism Policy

Plagiarism is the use of someone else's thoughts, words, ideas, or lines of argument in your own work without appropriate documentation (a parenthetical citation at the end and a listing in "Works Cited")-whether you use that material in a quote, paraphrase, or summary. It is a theft of intellectual property and will not be tolerated, whether intentional or not.

Student Honor Creed

As an MSU Student, I pledge not to lie, cheat, steal, or help anyone else do so."

As students at MSU, we recognize that any great society must be composed of empowered, responsible citizens. We also recognize universities play an important role in helping mold these responsible citizens. We believe students themselves play an important part in developing responsible citizenship by maintaining a community where integrity and honorable character are the norm, not the exception.

Thus, We, the Students of Midwestern State University, resolve to uphold the honor of the University by affirming our commitment to complete academic honesty. We resolve not only to be honest but also to hold our peers accountable for complete honesty in all university matters.

We consider it dishonest to ask for, give, or receive help in examinations or quizzes, to use any unauthorized material in examinations, or to present, as one's own, work or ideas which are not entirely one's own. We recognize that any instructor has the right to expect that all student work is honest, original work. We accept and acknowledge that responsibility for lying, cheating, stealing, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty fundamentally rests within each individual student.

We expect of ourselves academic integrity, personal professionalism, and ethical character. We appreciate steps taken by University officials to protect the honor of the University against any who would disgrace the MSU student body by violating the spirit of this creed.

Written and adopted by the 2002-2003 MSU Student Senate.

Students with Disabilities

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Disability Support Services in Room 168 of the Clark Student Center, (940) 397-4140.

Safe Zones Statement

The professor considers this classroom to be a place where you will be treated with respect as a human being - regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, political beliefs, age, or ability. Additionally, diversity of thought is appreciated and encouraged, provided you can agree to disagree. It is the professor's expectation that ALL students consider the classroom a safe environment.

Contacting your Instructor

All instructors in the Department have voicemail in their offices and MWSU e-mail addresses. Make sure you add your instructor's phone number and e-mail address to both email and cell phone lists of contacts.

Attendance Requirements

Because this is an online course, there are no mandatory class sessions. Students should communicate with the instructor on a regular basis. There will be a voluntary help session held at MSU during the semester.  See the course calendar for date, time & location.

Other Policies

Course Communication:
Contact information for the instructor is listed at the beginning of this syllabus. Email is the preferred mode of communication. Communication from the instructor to the student will be through the student's D2L e-mail account. Student's are encouraged to set the D2L e-mail to forward to their regular e-mail account. When e-mailing me, be sure to include your full name and course number.  The instructor will respond or at least acknowledge email messages from students within a maximum of five (5) business days when MSU is in session. Beyond standard university holidays and breaks, the instructor will notify students of any extended periods of time when email contact is not practical (professional meetings, etc). Students will also find information regarding deadlines and other important course related material in the Course Calendar located on the home page. Open the calendar and click on the date to open dialogue boxes or use the List view.

Administrative Process:
Unresolved issues related to this course should be first addressed between the student and the course instructor.  If there is no resolution, students must follow this sequence: 

  • Department Chair - Dr. Jeff Killion (940-397-4679)
  • College Dean - Dr. James Johnston (940-397-4594)
  • Dean of Students - Matthew Park (940-397-7500)
Writing Proficiency Requirement

All students seeking a Bachelor's degree from Midwestern State University must satisfy a writing proficiency requirement once they've 1) passed the 6 hours of Communication Core and and 2) earned 60 hours. You may meet this requirement by passing either the Writing Proficiency Exam or English 2113. Please keep in mind that, once you've earned over 90 hours, you lose the opportunity to take the $25 exam and have no option but to enroll in the three-credit hour course. If you have any questions about the exam, visit the Writing Proficiency Office website at, or call 397-4131.

Calendar Attachment

Calendar List View - RADS-4913-X11 Applied Research Fall Semester 2016-20160825-144412.pdf

Campus Carry

Senate Bill 11 passed by the 84th Texas Legislature allows licensed handgun holders to carry concealed handguns on campus, effective August 1, 2016. Areas excluded from concealed carry are appropriately marked, in accordance with state law. For more information regarding campus carry, please refer to the University’s webpage at

If you have questions or concerns, please contact MSU Chief of Police Patrick Coggins at