Foundational Research Modules

Throughout the year, Bass Connections, in partnership with experts across campus, will offer short virtual modules designed to provide foundational knowledge in research practices. These sessions are open to all Duke students, staff and faculty (you do not have to be a member of a Bass Connections team to participate).

Please register for one or more sessions to receive the Zoom link.

Spring 2022 Modules

Tips for Effective Data Visualization

Date: January 28, 2022 (12:00-1:00)

Topics: The Duke Center for Data and Visualization Sciences will introduce tips for communicating using data visualizations.

  • Why we visualize
  • Principles of effective data visualization
  • Pitfalls to avoid
  • Critique and rework of a published visualization

Analyzing Qualitative Research Data (Including Using NVivo)

Date: February 4, 2022 (12:00-1:30) 

Topics: The Duke Social Science Research Institute will introduce qualitative coding, with a focus on NVivo, a software for coding qualitative research data.

  • What is qualitative analysis?
  • How do you develop and apply coding?
  • What is NVivo and how do you get it?
  • How to use it

Institutional Review Board (IRB)

Date: February 25, 2022 (12:00-1:00) (this session will be repeated on April 8)

Topics: In this session, the Duke Campus IRB will introduce participants to the IRB process.

  • What is human subjects research and what is the role of the IRB?
  • When is the IRB process needed and when should researchers use the campus IRB vs. Duke Health IRB?
  • What are the ethical considerations when doing human subjects research?
  • How does the IRB process work and how long does it take?

This module satisfies the Human Subjects Certification which is required for any researcher conducting human subjects research. 

Tips for Effective Academic Posters

Date: March 18, 2022 (12:00-1:00) (this session will be repeated on March 22; please note that you must register through Duke Libraries for the March 22 session)

Topics: The Duke Center for Data and Visualization Sciences will introduce tips for creating a great research poster.

  • Characteristics of a good poster
  • How to get started with your layout and storytelling
  • Basic graphic design principles
  • Pitfalls to avoid
  • Critique and revision of a real poster draft

Institutional Review Board (IRB)

Date: April 15, 2022 (12:00-1:00) (this is the same content as offered on Feb. 25)

Topics: In this session, the Duke Campus IRB will introduce participants to the IRB process.

  • What is human subjects research and what is the role of the IRB?
  • When is the IRB process needed and when should researchers use the campus IRB vs. Duke Health IRB?
  • What are the ethical considerations when doing human subjects research?
  • How does the IRB process work and how long does it take?

This module satisfies the Human Subjects Certification which is required for any researcher conducting human subjects research. 


Fall 2021 Modules

The following modules were offered in Fall 2021 (Duke users can access recordings):

Institutional Review Board (IRB)

Topics: In this session, the Duke Campus IRB introduced participants to the IRB process.

  • What is human subjects research and what is the role of the IRB?
  • When is the IRB process needed and when should researchers use the campus IRB vs. Duke Health IRB?
  • What are the ethical considerations when doing human subjects research?
  • How does the IRB process work and how long does it take?

Project Planning and Communication for Teams

Topics: Bass Connections provided tips and best practices for managing complex, team-based projects. 

  • Project scoping
  • Project charters and project planning
  • Working on teams
  • Communicating within teams

Literature Reviews

Topics: Duke Libraries provided guidance on how to conduct a literature review.

  • What is a literature review?
  • How do you do one?
  • What makes a good source?
  • General search strategies
  • Choosing a citation management software
  • Using subject area librarians

Documentation and Stuff Management

Topics: The Duke Center for Data and Visualization Sciences shared best practices for documenting and organizing research materials for teams.

  • Shared folders
  • File naming conventions
  • Data management tools
  • Managing data for sharing and reproducibility
  • Types of documentation (readme files, research notebooks, and documenting for future use)

Qualitative Research Design

Topics: The Duke Social Science Research Institute introduced qualitative research methods and practices.

  • When should you use qualitative research?
  • Developing an interview/focus group instrument
  • Conducting focus groups
  • Conducting interviews
  • Note taking, transcription and coding (in brief; see later session on analysis)

Survey Design

Topics: The Duke Social Science Research Institute introduced best practices in survey design.

  • When should you use surveys?
  • Survey design
  • Survey administration
  • Avoiding survey bias

Data Analysis and Workflow Management

Topics: The Duke Center for Data & Visualization Sciences provided tips for reproducible computational analysis.

  • Finding and using existing data sources
  • Data wrangling: normalizing and cleaning
  • Literate coding: combining prose and code to render analytical reports
  • Version control (git & GitHub): self-document the story of your code-based project and collaborations
  • Computational reproducibility: exemplary tools (e.g. OpenRefine, R, Python)

Community Engaged Research

Topics: The Duke Social Science Research Institute shared best practices for community engaged research.

  • Why to conduct community engaged research
  • Developing reciprocal partnerships
  • Ethical engagement
  • Understanding and respecting local context
  • Stakeholder engagement and management

Additional Resources

If you can’t make a training above, or want supplemental resources, check out:

Recordings of past research modules (accessible to all Duke users)

Duke Center for Data and Visualization Sciences Workshops

Duke DS+ (Data Science+) Trainings

Duke Libraries Research Support

Mod•U (online modules from the Duke Social Science Research Institute) (see index of all modules)

Project Management Modules from Duke Libraries & Bass Connections