Research Methods for Christian Leadership VI – CLED 988

CG • Section 16WK • 07/01/2018 to 12/31/2199 • Modified 05/02/2022

Course Description

This course is the final course in a six course sequence on research methodology. Students continues in a guided mentorship begun in CLED 987 as the student continues to prepare for the submission of dissertation prospectus under the supervision of the faculty member. During the course, students will develop and submit the full prospectus (comprised of chapters 1-3) for approval. Upon successful supervisor and IRB approval of the prospectus, students will then enter the field research phase of the dissertation process. (Formerly CLED 905)

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


Social research focuses on people in their contexts. This course will equip the student to conduct social research by developing the third chapter of the Prospectus and assembling the first draft of the Dissertation Prospectus. The chart below identifies the linkage between the research course sequence, this course, and the steps in the dissertation development process.


Research Product

CLED 730 Research Methods for Christian Leadership I

Deconstructing a Dissertation

CLED 770 Research Methods for Christian Leadership II

Three Potential Dissertation Profiles

CLED 805 Research Methods for Christian Leadership III

Chapter One of the Prospectus

CLED 830 Research Methods for Christian Leadership IV

Chapter Two of the Prospectus

CLED 987 Research Methods for Christian Leadership V

Chapter Three of the Prospectus/Comps

CLED 988 Research Methods for Christian Leadership VI

The Prospectus and The IRB Process

CLED 989 Dissertation Research & Writing

Researching and Writing the Dissertation

CLED 990 Dissertation Defense

Dissertation Completed and Defended

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Develop and submit the full prospectus (comprised of chapters 1-3) for supervisor approval.
  2. Submit the full prospectus (comprised of chapters 1-3) for IRB approval.
  3. Launch, pending all approvals above, the research phase of the dissertation.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview. 

Discussions: Reflection of Revisions for Research Prospectus (3)

Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student will complete 3 Discussions in this course. For each Discussion, the student will reflect on feedback and revisions needed within the corresponding chapter of the Research Prospectus from that modular. Each thread should be at least 250 words. (MLO: A)

Initial Committee Consultation

The purpose of this research task is to facilitate interaction, create understanding, and to engage the candidate with the Dissertation Committee in preparation for the creation of the Research Prospectus. This task is conducted in a two steps. 

Step 1: Scheduling the Consultation

It is the responsibility of the candidate to make contact with the Dissertation Supervisor via email to schedule a video conference call which will serve as the initial consultation with the Dissertation Committee. The consultation should be scheduled for a one hour time slot during the first week of the course at a time that works best for the committee members.

The initial consultation serves as the candidate's opportunity to facilitate interaction, create understanding, and engagement with the Dissertation Committee in order to review the proposed study with the committee. The candidate will utilize the Research Profile created in CLED987 for this purpose. The candidate's goal should be to acquaint the committee with the study from a macro perspective.

Step 2: Quiz: Initial Committee Consultation Report

Once the consultation is finished, complete the "Quiz: Initial Committee Consultation Report" in order to gain the assigned points for this task. (MLO: A)

Research Prospectus: Initial Draft Submission Assignment

The doctoral candidate will assemble the Research Prospectus Initial Draft and submit it to the Dissertation Supervisor for review and possible revision. The submission must be in Word format. The Dissertation Supervisor will offer comments on the submitted document using the Word "Review" feature. Because this task will be completed as a process requiring several possible revisions and resubmissions, the student will be allowed multiple resubmissions with the highest score counting toward the course grade. All resubmissions are made at the original submission link. (MLO: A)

Research Prospectus: Defense-Ready Draft Submission Assignment

Based on the feedback received in the prior submission and review process, on the date indicated at the course site, the doctoral candidate is to submit the Defense-Ready Research Prospectus for Supervisor and Second Reader review. The submission must be in Word format. The supervisor will offer comments on the document and will complete a grading rubric for this submission.

The candidate must submit the entire final document including all “Front Matter” and all appropriate appendices, instruments and references. The document must follow the outline found in the Program Handbook and use the template provided. Work that is not APA formatted will not be reviewed. (MLO: A)

Research Prospectus: Defense Hearing Assignment

Upon the approval of the Dissertation Supervisor, in consultation with the Second Reader, the doctoral candidate will be allowed to defend their Research Prospectus. The oral defense or hearing of the Research Prospectus is an online, video-based conference with the Supervisor and the Second Reader present. During the hearing, the candidate takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes to present the rationale for the study and describe the proposed research design. The use of a PowerPoint or similar presentation is required. The candidate is to follow the instructions provided in Program Handbook as they prepare this presentation. This presentation is then followed by an approximately 40 to 45-minute dialogue with the Dissertation Committee. (MLO: A)

Research Prospectus: Finalized Version Assignment

Once the Prospectus is successfully defended at the video conference hearing, the candidate makes any required changes and submits a finalized version of the Research Prospectus. APA Style corrections are to be reflected in the revised version. The revised version is submitted to the Dissertation Supervisor who approves the document and circulates it to the Second Reader. Once final approval is granted, the doctoral candidate may not make any additional changes to the Research Prospectus without Supervisor approval. (MLO: A)

Quiz: IRB Application Process Initiation

After completion of a successful Research Prospectus video conference hearing, the doctoral candidate must apply for review and approval by the Liberty University Institutional Review Board (IRB). The IRB is a federally mandated body, the purpose of which is to ensure ethical treatment of research subjects. Please carefully review the IRB website. This site will orient the candidate to the timeline and the process of this review. Modifications to the application should be expected.

Execution of the research Prospectus CANNOT begin before receiving IRB approval. If data are collected or accessed before obtaining all necessary and full IRB approvals, the candidate may be removed from the program. Once IRB approval is received, the Supervisor will clear the student to begin field testing and data gathering. Remember, IRB approval documentation is to be completed only upon successful defense of the Research Prospectus.

You are to report the initiation of the application process through a course "Quiz." The Dissertation Supervisor will assign the points for this task when the IRB application is made and the quiz is submitted. (MLOs: B, C)