The Benefits and Role of Research in Academics

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22 October 2015
The University of Mpumalanga (UMP) hosted the research seminar for emerging researchers and staff registered for postgraduate studies. The seminar focused on research in various fields, benefits thereof and the role of academics in research.

The event was organised by the Director for Research Management at UMP, Prof Phindile Lukhele-Olurunju, in a bid to provide support for both staff members who want to engage in research and those registered for postgraduate studies. The seminar was run by Prof Mammo Muchie and Dr Abiodun Egbetokun.

Day one of the seminar started with a presentation by Prof Muchie on Research in South Africa in particular and Africa in general. He explained the need for research in various fields, benefits thereof and the role of academics in research. This was followed by a discussion on research conceptualisation. Steps followed in conceptualisation were well explained. There was active engagement between staff and the presenters. Some staff members also contributed to the discussion by sharing their experiences, perceptions and ideas on both research conceptualisation and implementation.

Dr Egbetokun’s presentation was on proposal writing. He went through all the steps of proposal writing. For each step he presented specific questions which a researcher should ask himself/herself to ensure that he/she is doing the right thing at a particular stage. He gave examples which made it easy to understand.

Dr Egbetokun also explained the importance of use of simple language in writing either the proposal itself, a paper or a report. He gave guidelines which one could use to ensure that his/her writing is appealing to the reader.  The presentation by Dr Egbetokun can simply be summed up as “proposal writing made easy.” The whole process was explained so clearly that even beginners would proceed with little or no difficult at all.

Day two saw staff members going one on one with both Prof Muchie and Dr Egbetokun for consultation. Lecturers sought advice and direction regarding their proposals and other work in progress.  Each of those who consulted was very happy with the feedback they got from the two renowned research mentors.

“As staff members of the University of Mpumalanga we are very grateful for having had this kind of seminar as well as having had to create a relationship with these two leaders in the field of research. We are quite inspired by the wealth of knowledge displayed by the two and their willingness to avail themselves to us for the benefit of research. Continued interaction with them will help us to fulfil our mandate to conduct research in addition to our teaching and learning engagements. We are also very grateful to our Director of Research, Prof Phindile Lukhele-Olorunju for paving the way. It everyone’s hope that the candle lit at this seminar will be kept burning by all.”