Dr. Onen, the facilitator, covered the sub topic "Basic Data Collection Methods, Tools and Analysis Techniques" with his presentations during the fourth and final day. In first shift of the morning session Dr. Onen covered the Data Collection Plan in which he emphasized that a researcher must have a plan of how he wants to approach a research problem. A researcher must think about such issues prior to conducting a study, right from the time of developing a proposal. Other issues covered included data, methods of collecting data for example using Survey as a tool which is predominantly used with qualitative data. The four main methods of data collection he exhaustively covered were survey, quantitative methods, experimental and observation were . Literature review was also further looked at in the lens of a method of collection for desk research. Dr. Onen emphasized the fact that for every method a researcher would need to use a tool or instrument to actually collect data because every method used must have results coming out of them as output. Two types of data as categorized by Source were highlighted namely Primary Data and Secondary Data. In addition two types of Data as categorized by Form including Quantitative Data and Qualitative Data were also covered. Four types of Data categorized by Levels of Measurement were covered including Nominal, Ordinal, Interval and Ratio. The meaning of Data Collection, Data Collection Methods, and Tools (also some times referred to as instruments) were exhaustively reviewed. A pertinent question arose as to whether a questionnaire should be considered a tool or method or both. Dr. Onen also covered how Data is Collected.
In the second shift of the morning session Dr. Onen covered Validity and Reliability of Data Collection Instruments in which a study uses experts to validate tools. An expert is a professional in particular field. Dr. Onen was of the opinion that Factor analysis was a good method for validating tools. However, he suggested that perhaps CVI could preferably be used for validation of tools prior to going into the field and factor analysis used after going into the filed for confirmatory purposes. Supervisors need to encourage students to adopt already tried and tested data collection tools rather than come up with their own tools because in most cases students may not competently come up with new tools themselves that would stand the test of time and there is no telling how accurate such tools would be if they have not undergone rigorous peer reviews or broad acceptance. Validity of Study Instruments was another area covered with items covered including Approaches of Ensuring Validity, Commonest Approach for Ensuring Validity and Reliability of Study Instruments using such methods as Test Retest Method, Split-Half Method, Parallel Form Method and Internal Consistency Method. Dr. Onen briefly devled into Reliability and Validity for Qualitative Research Instruments together with Basic Data Analysis Techniques including the meaning of Data Analysis and Stages of Data Analysis. With that, Dr. Onen ended his presentation for the four day seminar.
In his closing, Dr. Mohamed M. Jibril, Vice President, Academic Affairs welcomed Dr. Onen to say some parting words. Dr. Onen started off by the first saying he was thankful for the opportunity as it was a great privilege and honour to be invited from Uganda to share experience with colleagues at Amoud University in Somaliland. From the reception at Egal airport, Hargeisa and extending to the stay at the seminars, the visit was quite fulfilling, Dr. Onen said. He was also thankful to Willis Oso and Morvin Achila who are other expatriate staff that were there from the time of the very establishment of Amoud University School of Postgraduate Studies and Research for sacrificing to remain at Amoud University for all this duration of time in order to sustain the efforts of university administration since the launch of the school in moulding the young scholars into strong researchers with competitive skills and abilities. Amoud University as he remembered it had grown in all aspects including in terms of infrastructure. He congratulated the leadership of the university for doing the very best and helping sustain the academic standards and even going further by seeking such initiatives as the research seminar in order to improve quality of higher education in Amoud and Somaliland. In a unique way he said, he had to take the opportunity to commend Prof. Suleiman for his leadership style, because without the able and humble leadership of the president perhaps not so much would probably have been achieved. Lack of good leadership he said, has been a factor that has negatively affected several universities and other institutions of higher learning in Africa and other parts of the world, a fact which has led to the stagnation or even deterioration of many of them. This means therefore Prof. Suleiman deserves great honor and respect in the society and among scholars for having led the university with lots of wisdom and grace, while still remaining a really simple man at heart and in action.
Regarding the seminar, Dr. Onen stated that he was overwhelmed by the Special response he had received during the seminar and counted this experience as having been quite unique since it was characterized by a very versatile and active level of engagement in participation which had humbled him even more. The level of participation, he said, had been well beyond what he had really anticipated. With regard to upward academic mobility he addressed the younger colleagues who are yet to do PhDs to go ahead and pursue those degrees, because it always better to earn PhD while young, since the earlier you get your PhD the better the returns on investments from your qualifications. He also encouraged the female staff who were present in the seminar and generally those involved in higher education sector to pursue and actively participate in enhancing uptake of further education among the women, because they have the opportunity and the support from the university. He further declared that as part of his engagement with Amoud university he would be more than willing to assist any student from Amoud University, registered for PhD in any institution whether in Ethiopia, Malaysia or elsewhere with their research work voluntarily because he is part and parcel of the larger Amoud family. As part of Amoud university fraternity he said, he had a lot to share with the other colleagues, and that sharing is necessary for purposes of adding knowledge.
In his parting shot however, he emphasized that uptake of all types of research must be encouraged at universities, including qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods and that Amoud University is no exception because this can help enrich the value and quality of research done at the institution.
Oso Willis in closing remarks said it was his greatest pleasure to appreciate Dr. Mohamed Muse Jibril, Vice President, Academic Affairs, for facilitating a visiting lecturer to come all the way from Kampala, Uganda to present in such a useful and meaningful seminar which would go a long way in helping build capacity and improve the awareness of various research elements and further enrich the body of knowlegde of scholars at Amoud University. The seminar he said, was going to be viewed in the lens of a data collection exercise which would help enrich Amoud university documents. For example, one of the outputs of the research seminar would be to help identify areas in the research manual of Amoud University that would need improvement or review so as to enhance quality of research studies done at Amoud. He further posited that although Amoud University was part of global world of academia and must therefore measure to and follow expected minimum standards of doing things, it was necessary too for Amoud University to stand out in a unique way in order to retain it's identity hence a balance of the two ideals would have to be found as far as academic work is concerned and even during proposed review of the research manual. The struggle, in Oso's view was to be able to produce best quality of academic work within the limits of the resources, while applying the context in the best way we can.
Dr. Mohamed M. Jibril was the last to give his closing speech. He expressed joy and happiness for Amoud University having been able to bring on board two of the most reputable scholars Dr. Onen and Oso. They have been able to produce guidelines in research which have been followed by students from all over the world, he said. Amoud has therefore benefited greatly from the knowledge and experience of the two scholars. In addition, he stated that every university must have it's own specific manual and therefore Amoud University will also strive to go through a systematic method to achieve a harmonized research manual that capures all academic sound and logical sentiments as expressed during the seminar in order to close the scholarly gaps identified during the four day seminar so as to enrich it's quality of research and research documents including the research manual.
Dr. Mohamed said that Dr. Onen would be assigned to teach three classes at the school of postgraduate studies and research both in Hargeisa campus and Borama campus for the next two weeks. He further divulged that Dr. Onen will also attend and observe proposal hearings, so that he can advise the panel and also share his experience with the teams in evaluating quality of students' works. In addition he urged the supervisors to release students for proposal defense on time so that the defense panel can be convened in order to start its work in a timely fashion. He expressed great pride in all of his colleagues who are teaching and supervising at the school of postgraduate studies and research (SPGSR) and admired the fact that when it comes to content they have excellent knowledge and when it comes to research supervision they have very good capacity and skills. However, he said that since as scholars are design always expected to learn new things, all supervisors have to continue to building their capacities and such capacity building could also be partially achieved through knowledge transfer in such seminars and conferences as the one that was arranged by the Vice President for Academic Affairs's Office. He expressed hope that this seminar and other initiatives lined up this academic year would help build capacities of the university and that this would not be the last visit from Dr. Onen, but the first among many that will come in future. As per the arrangements, he expressed hope that Dr. Onen would also be able to find time and come at the end of next semester March 2020/ July 2020.