The way to motivate

April 13, 2007

Your article "Bin recipe book, let them create" (Working Knowledge, March 30) on linking teaching and research for students didn't make any reference to the role of dissemination in the process.

I always ask my project students to tell me what they think signifies the end of the research process. All of them respond with a variation on "the day I hand my project in". I then get them to imagine that they have done a really excellent piece of empirical work that produces a novel and perhaps unexpected finding. They come to the realisation that dissemination is the end of the process. For the best students, their work becomes about trying to produce a publishable piece of work rather than trying to get a mark.

This change of emphasis for the student really highlights the synergy between the teaching-research process.

Mark Griffiths
Nottingham Trent University

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