Generate Questions / Aims / Hypotheses Based on Experience, Expertise and Literature.
At this level student generate questions, aims or hypothesis based on previous research experience, their increasing expertise and especially reliance on the literature. Each student begins the research process through reviewing available evidence or information, considering especially gaps that are explicit or implicit on the literature. This provides the clarity and direction to enable the embarking on an inquiry that is doable and of sufficient significance.
The degree of rigour required of a research question or project aim will be appropriate to the discipline and year level, as will be how ambitious the resulting research will be. This means that a Masters by coursework student will develop a question or aim requiring significantly more sophistication of process to address it, when compared to a First Year student. Both can work autonomously at an appropriate level. Higher degrees of autonomy do not imply 'sloppiness'; however engagement with the literature to identify research gaps should increase in proportion to the university year of study. Such standards are specific to the discipline, the university and the academics involved; the RSD framework allows conceptualisation of providing learning and assessment tasks requiring varying degrees of autonomy.