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This was the topic of today’s Research Workshop A class. Identifying your own strengths and weaknesses can be difficult but once you know what they are, it’s so much easier to plan your project; how mush time you should put into doing certain things etc… As mentioned by Adrian, normally things you like doing is your strengths. You like it because you are good at it. Vice versa, if you don’t like doing something, means probably because you’re not very good at doing that something. It’s a pretty simple theory but I never really thought of it that way. My biggest weakness is ‘READING’. I’m the type of person who will read books to go to sleep and I will have the best sleep ever!! Sometimes, if the article is very fascinating (like the reading about silent I mentioned last week) then I enjoy reading, but this rarely happens. I used to think I don’t like reading because of my limitation of English vocabulary, but then when I think about it I also don’t like reading Japanese books or Indonesian books, so I guess it’s in my nature. Adrian suggested me to relate something I like doing with readings or read about something I am interested in. I know this will work for sure but the only problem I have is weather articles or books I find interesting are relevant or ‘academic’ enough for my research or not. Well, I shall find out soon.

While I was going through last week’s class reading, ‘Researching lived experience: human science for an action sensitive pedagogy’ by Max Van Manen, I came across a headline that interest me so I started reading. The headline reads ‘Silence – the Limit and Power of Silence’. Here, the author describes how human science research operates under various different categories of silence.

1) Literal Silence:

This is simply when we know it’s better to stay silent than to say or write anything. When writing an essay, it’s always better to not write everything you know. Instead we have to select the best information and write just enough. This act of writing what you know is known as literal silence.

2) Epistemological Silence:

This is a kind of silence when you know that you know about something but you just somehow cannot find the right words or construct a proper sentence for it. The author also explains how this is the reason why we quote other writers, because someone else has written what we couldn’t.

3) Ontological Silence:

The author describes this as “the silence of being or life itself”. It’s when you’re in the moment of greatness or fulfillment which then makes you speechless.

For some reason I was very amazed by this reading. I never really took notice but in a way the author is saying that silence complements writing and speech (maybe only I read it this way). I thought there was something very romantic about that… It was a very good reading to do before I go to sleep. Good Night.

Task from Class 4

In last week’s class, I was asked to look for projects or thesis that uses the methodology I am interested in using for my own project; this includes focus group and interview. I want to use these two methods mainly because I want to stay as close to ‘PEOPLE’ as possible. Because I am doing an advertising project which relies heavily on human response, I think it’s a good idea for me to always be aware of what people think and feel. When discussing this in class with Sarah and Royce, I came to the conclusion that maybe focus group is not such a good idea. The reason for this is simply when you put a group of people together there is always one person who will act as a trend-maker (most of the time they do this unconsciously of course) and the rest will just be the follower. This means, it’s very hard for me to know for sure weather they’re saying what they’re saying because they really feel that way or because they are just following the trend-maker. So I have decided to focus on interview (at least for now). After going through some projects, done by previous years, I came across a lot of students who use interview as one of their research methods. Below are just some examples and short description of what they did. They use ‘interview’ in their own way to investigate different problems. I think this will come in handy for me.

Curbing the ‘epidemic’ by Tess Michalski:

She conducted a formal, semi-structured interview with campaign manager to find out the process of campaign development. Using this method, she was able to talk directly to people involved in the campaign production and therefore gained the insight of how and why they created such campaign.

Blink by Iz Sulaini:

He also conducted semi-structured interviews with few people working in advertising industry from different countries. Through his in-depth interview with many very influential people in advertising, he was able gain various insights from people who have experienced the difficulty of having to create ads for different cultures.

Taking communications seriously by Fairlie Cottril:

Her interview, unlike Tess and Iz’s interview was undertaken with two different groups of industry based participants. The first group is from the non-profit organizations and the second group is from companies that provide services to these non-profit organizations. This way, she was able to see two different point of view.

The more traditional form of research method, ‘Literature Review’ also seems like a popular choice among students.

One way to meet and directly talk to people in relevant domain:

When I was doing my undergrad, one of my assignments was to interview someone who works in the industry. What I did was, called up the advertising agency straight away and said “Hi, my name is Rika.N and I am a student from RMIT. I am doing —– project and I would like to talk to someone in your creative department.” Surprisingly they set up a meeting for me to meet one of the creative directors from their agency.

We tend to see these people as aliens and will have no time to talk to us. But calling them directly is actually so much better than emailing them. Industry practitioners will receive so much email in one day, if they don’t recognize your name, your email will probably become junk mail. What I have learnt through this assignment was that it’s harder for people to say no if you’re talking to them directly and I think this is a very important thing people should always remember.

Last week’s class task was to write an abstract. Abstract should have four sentences;

1) The Problem

2) Why the Problem is a Problem

3) Startling Sentence

4) Implication of the Startling Sentence

My Abstract

When launching an advertising campaign, some agencies ignore the fact that they are dealing with more than one culture. This is because of their false assumption; that globalization has brought the world together and therefore now everyone’s value is the same. This is a problem because a successful campaign in one culture/region can simply be offensive to the others. This will lead to the failure of the campaign and therefore will have an enormous impact on the brand image. Three small changes can repair this problem; simply by replacing talents and changing language to the more suitable one and by researching and understanding particular culture. This will increase the chances of agencies to produce a successful campaign that will be accepted all around the world.


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