Articles that have to deal with training researchers

Evaluating Your Ministry

Periodic evaluation of ministry is necessary to ongoing development and innovation. It is a sign of godly wisdom to consider or evaluate one’s way. Evaluation is a part of OC culture. Research tools and techniques can be used to aid evaluation the evaluation process. Specific examples of how Surveys, Focus Groups, Interviews, Participant Observation, Time Management Evaluations and Formal Research Projects can be used to evaluate ministry.


Making Growth Projections using AAGR

A researcher may be called upon to either evaluate whether the team’s objectives or the proposed faith-based goals of church leaders are realistic and attainable. Or perhaps the researcher will be asked to suggest realistic growth goals and objectives. These goals could pertain to both the growth of the number of Christians and the growth of the number of Churches. Two approaches to setting and evaluating growth goals based on Average Annual Growth Rates (AAGR) are presented here. Also three perspectives on actual AAGRs are presented.

Church Growth Data Analysis and Interpretation

This article describes three types of church growth data analysis: the Population to Church Ratio, The Number of New Congregations Needed and The Number of Evangelicals per New Church Needed. Examples are provided from Eastern Europe of how church growth data can be interpreted and results communicated using graphs and maps. Step by step instruction is provided for certain calculations, graphing and mapping tasks.

A. Church Growth Data Analysis

Estimating Research Project Costs

It is not difficult to come up with a reasonable estimate of what a research project will cost. The following discussion of costs assumes that some of the basic necessities are already in place: adequate computing equipment, your own salary, a place to work and train your assistants. Here are other costs which are likely to be incurred associated with each step of the research project:

Steps in Research Project and Associated Cost

Commitments for Mission Research from Nehemiah

Rev. Dr. S. D. Ponraj shares his observations about a researcher's personal commitment to Missions Research, based on the life and work of Nehemiah.

1. Dependence on to God as evidenced in Prayer. (Neh 1:4-11; 2:4; 4:9 etc.)

2. Commitment to his calling (2:10) his calling for a specific mission. We must be certain of and committed to our calling. What pushes me to the field? Why am I doing what I'm doing?

Basic Church Growth Data Analysis

Executive Summary
This article describes the Basic Church Growth Data Analysis that was done by OC International for each of the 42 “counties” in Romania during the period of 1999-2002. Descriptions of the communication tools used are provided. The explanations are given to enable other researchers to perform similar analysis. Data for the “county” of Brasov is used in this example.The attached file describes in detail each communication tool used and the data analysis techniques used to prepare each tool.

Reporting the Results

Research done by busy missionaries often gets bogged down at the reporting stage. The results are in. The findings have been found. The implications for the decision have been communicated informally. The job of writing up the results looms laborious and long. Actually, it is not necessary to write up a full report on every project undertaken. But certainly the bigger projects, and the projects which are likely to have wide appeal need to be written up so that others can benefit from the research too.

Errors in Human Inquiry

  • Inaccurate observation – Failing to observe things right in from of us or mistakenly observing things that really aren’t there.
  • Over- Generalization – Assuming that a few similar events are evidence of a general pattern.
  • Selective observation – Ignoring events or situations that don’t correspond to a preconceived generalization
  • Made up information – Thinking up ways to explain away the events that contradict generalizations.

Essentials for Good Survey Questions

Limit your questions
When creating a survey, resist the temptation to ask every possible questions that comes to mind. The longer the questionnaire, the less likely people will be willing to answer your questions. If a question does not contribute to answering your research question, it is non-essential; strike it from the list. If you have no intention of analyzing and using the information gathered by a question, delete it. Focus just on essential questions.

Evaluate your survey questions

Guidelines For Submitting A Case Study

Submitting a case study of your research project is a great way to share your results with others and provide a model that others might use to do a similar research project.


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