Research Support Framework - FAQs

The Application Process

How can I apply for support under the Framework?

You can apply for support from Wednesday 1 May 2019 to 3pm on Thursday 20 June 2019 using the application form which is available here.

What type of research is considered for funding under the Research Support Framework?

The Research Support Framework places a strong emphasis on research activities which will strengthen the links between research, policy and practice. The framework actively promotes collaboration among practising teachers and between practising teachers and other stakeholders in education. It seeks to offer support to those utilising and applying existing research in their practice, or conducting new research, especially where such projects are not associated with formal programmes of study.

The current round of the framework will also prioritise applications from practising teachers and those whose projects have the potential to contribute to research, policy and practice in the areas of wellbeing and collaboration. In this context, the Teaching Council’s broad definition of wellbeing, to include both teacher and student wellbeing, as set out on page 18 of the Cosán framework for teachers’ learning, will guide the adjudication process. Collaboration here is understood in broad terms to include collaboration involving practising teachers, students and/or others.

Can I apply under Strands 1 and 2 in the same year?

No, applicants may not apply more than once under this round of the Framework.

Who can apply?

The Teaching Council welcomes applications from registered teachers* and in particular those who are currently practising. Persons other than teachers may also be included on an application, however a registered teacher must be involved in every application in some capacity. Previous research experience is not essential.

If I am not a practising teacher but I am registered with the Teaching Council, am I eligible to apply for support under the framework?

Yes, registered teachers* who are not currently practising are eligible to apply for support. However, practising teachers will be afforded priority under this round of the framework. Applicants who indicate that they are practising teachers will be required, as part of the application process, to make a declaration confirming that, and specifying the school or Centre for Education in which they are working.

What is the financial value of each award? 

Any award up to and including €5,000.

How many awards will there be?

There is no set number of awards in any given round of the framework. In the first round (2017), 33 projects were awarded funding. In the second round (2018), 18 projects were awarded funding.

What will not be funded through the Framework?

Activities which have already been completed, materials which have already been purchased, and the purchase of equipment over €150 which have an economic life of over 12 months

Can I access support for my application?

Yes, support is available from the Teaching Council via a range of materials including webinars and guidance notes.  Support may also be accessed by email at research@effectiveservices.org

Applicants may also wish to seek support via T-REX. T-REX (Teachers’ Research Exchange) is an online network where teachers, student teachers and other educational researchers in Ireland can come together to talk, collaborate, and learn from one another. Through T-REX, applicants may identify people with similar research interests, discuss research ideas and locate potential collaborators. A series of webinars offering practical guidance and support for researchers is accessible here.

What is the final date for applications?

The open call for applications for the third round of the John Coolahan Research Support Framework issued on Wednesday 1 May 2019. The deadline for submission of applications is 3p.m. on Thursday 20 June 2019.

How will applications be assessed?

Key criteria will be used when considering each application. Please find further detail on the criteria for the review of applications on pages 9 and 10 of the guidance notes. Information on the Review Panel and the adjudication process is also available on page 11 of this document.

When will I be informed if my application is successful?

It is anticipated that you will be informed on whether your application has been short-listed in October 2019 and on whether your application has been successful in November 2019. For successful applicants, the awards event will be held on 10 December 2019.

Research

What are the most important things I should bear in mind, so as to ensure my research is rigorous and of high quality?

There is a series of webinars on conducting research that may help with your query. You can the webinars about carrying out a research project here.

Where can I learn more about the analysis of statistical data using a package such as SPSS?

There is a series of webinars on conducting research that may help with your query. You can watch all our webinars, and download the slides, about carrying out a research project here[CL1] .

 

Where can I learn more about the analysis of statistical data using a package such as SPSS?

The ESRI run regular workshops on the Growing Up in Ireland data and have related resources on their website here. They use SPSS in their workshops, so this could be a good starting point. For other SPSS workshops, most Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) run these regularly, so it is recommended that you check with your local HEI to see if there might be upcoming opportunities. The Children’s Research Network of Ireland and Northern Ireland periodically host similar workshops and further details are available here. The activelink.ie website may also be a useful reference point.

Can you recommend any books or good resources on using Statistics in quantitative research?

Andy Field’s ‘Discovering Statistics using IBM SPSS Statistics’ or Julie Pallant’s ‘SPSS Survival Manual’ are good resources. Additionally, Alan Bryman’s ‘Social Research Methods’ is a good generic book on social research methods.

Where can I find a sample literature review?

There is a webinar on conducting literature reviews available on the Teaching Council website which covers all aspects of literature reviews, from initial research to written format. You can watch the webinar here.

How far into a literature search should I proceed before articulating the problem I wish to research?

There is a webinar on conducting literature reviews available on the Teaching Council website which covers all aspects of literature reviews, from initial research to written format. You can watch the webinar here.

I’m having trouble finding Irish-based research on my topic. What should I do?

It is recommended that you watch our webinars on literature reviews, qualitative and quantitative research here. You may also wish to access the Teaching Council’s online library here. Another option would be to expand your scope to include research from other countries. If you are struggling to find any research at all on your topic, consider rethinking your research question or methodology.

What can I do if I find out that the research I want to do has already been done by someone else?

You can research the same area but ask a different question or use a different theory or method. It’s a good idea to let the existing research guide you in formulating your question. Our webinar on Literature Reviews should be helpful. Applicants may also wish to seek support via T-REX. T-REX (Teachers’ Research Exchange) is an online network where teachers, student teachers and other educational researchers in Ireland can come together to talk, collaborate, and learn from one another. Through T-REX, applicants may identify people who have researched similar topics, discuss research ideas and locate potential collaborators.

What is an ideal sample size for qualitative research in particular when conducting a case study of one school? 

The webinar on qualitative research will help you to answer this question. You can watch it here.

I want to conduct my research in my school, but I’m worried that my questionnaire for parents will get a low response rate. Is there any way that I can address this issue?

Achieving good survey response rates is often a challenge for researchers. That is why it is important when planning your research, to give plenty of consideration to the most appropriate data collection method(s). If you consider that survey response rate may be a particular challenge in the case of your sample, it may well be worthwhile to consider alternative methods, such as focus groups and/or interviews. For more guidance on data collection methods, we recommend you watch the webinars here on conducting qualitative and quantitative research.

 

Completing the Application Form

I can not access the links in the application form

Links are provided throughout the application form so that applicants can access relevant information to assist them in completing the form. All links are functional but if you experience any difficulties with your particular technical setup, you can access all of the information linked throughout the form in both in the guidance notes and on the research pages of the Teaching Council’s website. If you require further assistance, please contact: research@teachingcouncil.ie

In the project plan section, a date is required for each segment of the plan. How do I decide when I’ll be able to start my research if I don’t know when the resources I need will be available to me?

The Graphic on page 1 of the Guidance Notes includes the date of the awards event at which the first instalment of the awards will be made available to successful applicants. The final instalment will be payable on completion of the project. Based on this, it should be possible for you to give a best estimate for when you believe each stage of your research will commence and conclude.

Submitting an application

I am having trouble submitting my online application. What should I do?

You should download and save the form before completing. You will need Adobe Reader to access links and submit the form using the ‘Submit’ button at the end. Please note, Adobe Reader is not the default PDF reader in certain browsers (e.g. Google Chrome). The application works best if you are using Internet Explorer. If Adobe Reader is not installed on your device, you can download the free application here. Please ensure that you re-read and save the form before submitting. If the ‘submit application’ button at the end of the form does not work for you, you can save your completed form and email it to research@teachingcouncil.ie Please check the form before sending to ensure that all areas of the form have been completed fully. You will receive an email to confirm receipt of your form in due course.

I pressed the submit button at the end of the form, but I am not sure if the application was submitted. Can you let me know if there is something else I need to do?

When you click submit, you will be asked how you wish to submit the form (through webmail or an email client). Once you choose an email application, the email will appear pre-addressed to research@teachingcouncil.ie with your completed application saved as an attachment. You will need to press ‘send’ on the email and it will be saved in your sent items. If you experience any difficulty in using the submit button, you can save the form and email it as an attachment to research@teachingcouncil.ie Please check the form before sending to ensure that all areas of the form have been completed fully. You will receive an email to confirm receipt of your form in due course.

Research Reporting

When will my funding be made available to me?

The graphic on page 1 of the Guidance Notes includes the date of the awards event at which the first instalment of the awards will be made available to successful applicants. The final instalment will be payable following completion of the project and submission of a satisfactory final report. The final report will demonstrate that a number of conditions have been fulfilled. Fulfilment of these conditions will be determined by the Research Support Framework Review Panel when it meets once each year to review final reports.

What reporting requirements are attached to the receipt of financial support under the Framework?

Awards will be paid to successful applicants in two instalments. The first half of the award is presented at an awards event for all successful applicants following adjudication by the Review Panel. The second instalment will be paid following completion of the project and submission of a satisfactory final report. Where projects extend beyond one year, annual progress reports must also be submitted.

Progress Report

Those recipients whose research projects are to run beyond a year are expected to submit a progress report by 1 September each year to keep the Teaching Council informed on both of progress and of any changes to the project team and/or circumstances that may affect the project’s outcome. The progress report template is available to download here.

Final Report

Successful applicants will be expected to submit a final report within 60 days of completing the research. The final report will demonstrate that a number of conditions have been fulfilled. Fulfilment of these conditions will be determined by the Research Support Framework Review Panel when it meets in January each year to review final reports. In the case of the vast majority of projects, it is expected that final reports will be submitted within a period of three years of being awarded funding. In exceptional circumstances, and on a case-by-case basis, this may be extended, subject to agreement with the Teaching Council, and an absolute maximum of six years from the date of award. The final report template is available to download here.

Researchmeet

Where can I get more information about Researchmeet or contact other teacher-researchers?

Successful applicants are required to participate and share their learning at a Researchmeet as part of FÉILTE. They are also required to join and participate on the Teachers’ Research Exchange (T-REX) platform where we have a space dedicated to RSF recipients. We post 6 important communications on the site and, as such, engagement via this platform is required of all recipients.

How and when will I hear about presenting at Researchmeet?

You will be contacted via Teachers’ Research Exchange website about presenting at Researchmeet. The Centre for Effective Services (CES) will contact successful applicants regarding the scheduling of Researchmeet presentations approximately 3-6 months before the event.

* In this context, registered teacher is understood to be those who are registered with the Teaching  Council of Ireland.