"research activities should primarily be concerned with research processes, rather than outputs. This definition is built around three key features and your proposal must fully address all of these in order to be considered eligible for support:
It must define a series of research questions, issues or problems that will be addressed in the course of the research. It must also define its aims and objectives in terms of seeking to enhance knowledge and understanding relating to the questions, issues or problems to be addressed
It must specify a research context for the questions, issues or problems to be addressed. You must specify why it is important that these particular questions, issues or problems should be addressed; what other research is being or has been conducted in this area; and what particular contribution this project will make to the advancement of creativity, insights, knowledge and understanding in this area
It must specify the research methods for addressing and answering the research questions, issues or problems. You must state how, in the course of the research project, you will seek to answer the questions, address the issues or solve the problems. You should also explain the rationale for your chosen research methods and why you think they provide the most appropriate means by which to address the research questions, issues or problems.
Our primary concern is to ensure that the research we fund addresses clearly-articulated research questions, issues or problems, set in a clear context of other research in that area, and using appropriate research methods and/or approaches.
The precise nature of the research questions, issues or problems, approaches to the research and outputs of the work may vary considerably, embracing basic, strategic and applied research. The research questions, issues, problems, methods and/or approaches may range from intellectual questions that require critical, historical or theoretical investigation, to practical issues or problems that require other approaches such as testing, prototyping, experimental development and evaluation. The outputs of the research may include, for example, monographs, editions or articles; electronic data, including sound or images; performances, films or broadcasts; or exhibitions. Teaching materials may also be an appropriate outcome from a research project provided that it fulfils the definition above.
The research should be conceived as broadly as possible and so consideration should also be given to the outcomes of, and audiences for, the research. The outcomes of the research may only benefit other researchers and influence future research, but consideration must be given to potential opportunities for the transfer of knowledge into new contexts where the research could have an impact.
Creative output can be produced, or practice undertaken, as an integral part of a research process as defined above. The Council would expect, however, this practice to be accompanied by some form of documentation of the research process, as well as some form of textual analysis or explanation to support its position and as a record of your critical reflection. Equally, creativity or practice may involve no such process at all, in which case it would be ineligible for funding from the Council."
(Arts and Humanities Research Council)
"Of course, other kinds of assignments involving visuals do occur in college writing pedagogies. Visual analysis (especially advertising analysis) has been commonplace in postsecondary writing instruction for at least fifty years as a part of the post-World War II emphasis on propaganda and semantics characteristic of many composition and communication courses beginning in the 1940s, but that practice did not always or consistently include careful consideration of how images, layout, or graphics actually communicated meaning. Instead, advertising was treated as a subject for critique rather than itself a form of communication that employed both word and image" (Diana George, 2002, p.21).
"If I have given the impression that the media revolution of the fifties and sixties was a tough one for [writing] composition teachers, then I must say here that the world of graphic design, electronic text, and Web technologies certainly will prove even more difficult, though ultimately perhaps more useful for future understandings of composition as design. As with written compositions, Web pages must have an internal coherence; they must, in other words, be navigable. Unlike written compositions, the internal logic of a Web piece is likely to appear first in the visual construction of the page - not only in the images chosen but the colors, the placement of text or links, the font, the use of white space, and other elements linked more closely to the world of graphic design than to composition pedagogy. The work of Anne Wysocki is useful here as she challenges writing teachers to rethink their notions of what composition means - beyond the word and inclusive of the visual. Wysocki writes, 'When we ask people in our classes to write for the Web we enlarge what we mean by composition. None of us are unaware of the visuality of the Web, of how that initial default, neutral grey has a different blankness than typing-paper' ('Monitoring Order'). And whether it is true or not that their teachers are aware of the difference between the blank screen and the blank page, our students are certainly aware of this difference. Many already compose for the Web. Many have worked in the realm of the visual (or the virtual) as constitutive of composing texts of all sorts years before they get to their first-year college courses."
(Diana George, 2002, p.26,27)
Fig.1 Photography: She is Frank, Styling: Tessa O'Connor, Hair/Makeup: Megan Harrison, Model: Bree Unthank @ Giant Model Management [http://wearehandsome.com/a-handsome-project-she-is-frank/]
2). Diana George. "From Analysis to Design: Visual Communication in the Teaching of Writing," College Composition and Communication 54.1 (2002): 11-39.
"For practice-led projects, whilst creative output may be produced and practice undertaken as an integral part of the research process, the Council would expect this practice to be accompanied by some form of documentation of the research process, as well as some form of textual analysis or explanation to support its position and to demonstrate critical reflection. This documentation, analysis and reflection must be an integral part of the project and must be carried out during the award period. These outputs can go beyond more traditional academic papers and can include such forms as exhibition catalogues, where they are authored by the Principal Investigator him/herself; journals or diaries; documentation on a website, CDs or DVDs etc. A clear rationale for the appropriateness of the form of your critical reflection should be provided."
(Arts and Humanities Research Council, 2009. Research Funding Guide. Bristol, UK: AHRC)
[AHRC guidelines for qualifying the worth of practice-led research enquiry.]
"In September 2006 the BVREH was awarded funding by EPSRC/AHRC to build a demonstration 'Virtual Workspace for the Study of Ancient Documents'. The three month project answered a call for 'e-Science demonstrator projects in the arts and humanities' and finished in December 2006. The project constructed a virtual workspace for research involving decipherment and textual analysis of damaged and degraded ancient documents. It forms a step to providing direct access to widely scattered research resources such as dictionaries, corpora of texts and images of original documents and enables the researcher to store, annotate and organize items in a 'personal workspace'. The workspace also supports collaboration by allowing multiple researchers in separate locations to share a common view, working as if sat together, studying the original document."
(Ruth Kirkham, University of Oxford eResearch Centre, 2006-05-09)