Five Useful Software Tools for Academic Research

Five Useful Software Tools for Academic Research

Academic Research

Research is a painstaking process and today, researchers rely on the internet to collect and curate information. The internet is a practical support tool to locate references, collect and analyze data and for dissemination of information. Research transcription services play a key role in getting audio and video content such as interviews, questionnaires, and so on documented. Using the right tools is essential when working on the internet and fortunately, there are a wide range of options that researchers can choose from. Let’s take a look at five useful software tools that researchers can leverage to make the research process easier and improve their writing.

  • Trinka: This is a new AI assisted grammar and language correction tool for academic and technical writing. What makes the Trinka writing assistant unique is that it especially designed to support objective, precise, formal and structured writing needed in academics. Whether it’s medicine, engineering, social sciences, economics, computer science, biology, physics, or chemistry, Trinka makes subject specific correction suggestions and improves researchers’ writing skills. An enago.com review of this innovative tool notes that it can help with publication-specific requirements such as style guide adherence, consistency checking, and word count limitations.
  • EndNote: EndNote is described as the industry standard software tool for publishing and managing bibliographies, citations and references on the Windows and Macintosh desktop. Fully-cloud based EndNote Basic can be accessed from any device. You can insert a reference in a Word document with just a click and create and format an annotated bibliography. Endnotes and footnotes can be formatted in the style of your choice. Endnote supports collaboration. If you are working on a group project or want to share your citations with others, EndNote allows you manage team access and activity, and share selected groups of references – with up to 1,000 other users. It has more than 7000 citation styles.
  • Bit.ai: This comprehensive document management and collaboration platform comes with good interface usability, excellent real-time collaboration and sharing features, and great search capabilities, making it an ideal option for researchers. With Bit.ai, you can create multi-dimensional digital documents and dedicated workspaces. It allows you to share articles, PDFs, videos, slides, white papers, ebooks, audio samples, and any other type of digital content with your colleagues and peers easily. You can store all your files in the tool’s content library for quick access. With its smart search capabilities, Bit-ai allows users to find documents, files, images, links, and more, quickly.
  • Typeset: This is a simplified tool for researchers to write, collaborate and format research papers. Described as a smarter alternative to Word and Latex, Typeset is specially designed for academic writing, with features such as over 100,000+ verified journal formats, plagiarism and grammar check, editing support, and seamless collaboration with peers. Once you upload or copy-paste your paper on Typeset, the plagiarism and grammar checker will ensure your writing is error-free, thereby improving your publication chances. Your research can be downloaded in PDF, Docx, LaTeX file or Zip file.
  • Google Scholar: This freely accessible web tool from Google makes it simple to broadly search for scholarly literature across Google’s database. You can find relevant work by searching across most peer-reviewed online journals, books, articles, theses, abstracts and court opinions, from academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other websites. You can create a public author profile and also check who is citing your publications With Google Scholar, users can stay up to date with the latest developments in any area of research.

Academic writing can be very challenging. It requires good English writing skills to present your work and reach out to the research community across the globe and establish credibility among peers. Research data must be presented clearly and effectively. It’s important to avoid grammatical errors and paraphrase text properly. The manuscript must be proofread before submission. All of this requires commitment and practice to achieve competency.

As researchers focus on using online research tools to ease and improve research writing and make their work publication ready, they can rely on academic transcription services to document research notes, discussions, lectures, and research interviews.

10 Tips for Conducting Qualitative Research Interviews

10 Tips for Conducting Qualitative Research Interviews

Research Interviews

Recordings of qualitative research interviews are one of the most common audio types that digital transcription service providers help researchers convert into text format. To obtain useful data and draw conclusions, here are ten tips to consider when conducting qualitative research interviews:

  • Develop a Strong Research Question and make sure it is Clear: Your research question gives your work a clear focus and goal. A good research question will be specific, original, feasible to explore and answer within the specified timeframe, open to debate, and relevant to the area of study.
  • Prepare Well: Careful planning is critical for success with research interviews. First, familiarize yourself with the data recording equipment and make sure it works well and the audio is good. Choose a comfortable setting that is free of noise and other disturbances, and will be conducive to data collection. Consider the respondents’ convenience when choosing the place and time. Make sure you obtain the interviewees’ informed consent.
  • Make a Check List of the Questions you Wish to Ask: This is important to ensure that you discuss all the pertinent topics and don’t digress from the main one. Also, preparing a list of the key topics will help ensure that you don’t forget anything. Make sure your questions are clear, relevant and easy to understand, and will answer your research question. Use technical language or jargon only if your interviewee will understand it. An article published by www.tandfonline.com recommends conducting test interviews with peers or volunteers. This will give you the opportunity to “explore language, the clarity of the questions, and aspects of active listening”, notes the article.
  • Clearly Identify and Explain the Purpose of the Interview: Make sure the interviewee is fully aware of the purpose of the research.
  • Build Rapport First: Before asking the real research questions, which can be personal or controversial, ask neutral questions to put the interviewee at ease. Build rapport and trust with the respondent before you go on to the difficult questions.
  • Appear Professional: Acting in a professional manner during the interview will help you get more information. Focus on what the interviewee says – this will encourage them to give honest, direct answers.
  • Listen Actively, Talk Less: Focus on what the interviewee is saying and talk less. Don’t let yourself be distracted by phone calls or thoughts about other matters, as this can affect how the questions are answered. Actively listen to the respondent by giving them your undivided attention and acknowledging what they are saying. Being attentive will also help you understand whether your questions are being interpreted in the way you intend. Active listening also means respecting silence and recognizing gaps in the conversation as an opportunity for deeper reflection. So, listen actively and be candid and open.
  • Be Careful not to Introduce bias into the Interview: The attitude of the interviewers when asking the survey questions can affect respondents’ answers. For instance, showing sympathy for the problems faced by respondent can affect the answers, and thereby, the results. Bias can also creep into the replies if the interviewer changes the wording of a question to simplify it as altered wording may mean a different question. Finally, to avoid bias, the interviewer must be careful not to react openly to the respondent’s answers. Objectivity must be maintained throughout the process. Any response to an answer must only be a polite interest.
  • Record the Interviews: When conducting interviews, it is important that they are recorded. Taking notes is not easy and not recommended unless the respondent has any objections to being recorded. Making an audio recording will allow you to focus on the interview.
  • Transcribe the Audio Recordings: The recordings of research interviews must be transcribed promptly. Verbatim transcription or word-for-word reproduction of the verbal data is the most common method used to transcribe qualitative interviews. Verbatim transcription captures everything on the audio file exactly as is, including the non-verbal utterance, pauses and even silence. As the process is time consuming and challenging, especially when there are vast amounts of recorded information, most researchers rely on audio transcription service providers to convert their qualitative interview recordings converted into text format. Accurate transcripts are crucial for effective data analysis. Transcribing interviews as soon as possible after completion will help researchers identify analytical structures and find similarities and differences between different interviewees’ experiences (www.tandfonline.com).

Today, with the challenges posed by COVID-19, many academicians are conducting qualitative research interviews remotely and are relying on experienced online transcription service agencies to document them.

Importance of Research Transcription Service in Academic Research

Importance of Research Transcription Service in Academic Research

Research Transcription in Academic ResearchAcademic research is a highly interesting field offering useful insights and statistics to the researchers as well as other interested people. Research is important to the economic and social development of the society. It is also important from the point of view of studies related to history, religion, philosophy and so on. Any kind of research enhances the repertoire of global knowledge contributing new data and ideas. Qualitative as well as quantitative research methodology includes face-to-face interviews, focus group discussions, telephone interviews, and recordings of expert opinions among other audio recordings. Most researchers find audio transcription services very useful in this regard because it allows them to save time, stay more deeply involved in their research and analyze the results, knowing that the required transcripts will be ready when they need them.

For example, consider the amount of research going on in connection with the charred manuscript found around 45 years ago during excavations on the western shore of the Dead Sea. Hi-tech sequencing has proven that this parchment is part of the Book of Leviticus from a 1500-year-old Torah scroll, one of the oldest known copies of a text fundamental to both Jews and Christians. Researchers were able to decipher the verses from the sacred text called the Five Books of Moses found within the burnt manuscript. These five books, together known as the Torah are the foundation of Judaism and also integral to the Old Testament. The scholars have found that the newly revealed text is the exact replica in both format and letters, of the text in modern Torah scrolls read by most Jews at present. Highly sophisticated technology enabled the researchers to decipher the writing in the scroll and this method is expected to be useful for other old texts also such as the numerous fragile old manuscripts in the Vatican Library. What is astonishing to the scholars is that the text has not changed in 2000 years.

Scholars pursuing research in areas such as the above will have to collect data through personal interviews and discussions among other things. Nowadays most researchers make use of their smartphones to make the required recordings, which they later get transcribed with the help of an academic transcription service provider. In this way, they get to spend time more productively thinking and organizing their ideas while the professional service provider ensures accurate transcripts of all important recordings. Moreover, with neatly organized transcripts and insightful transcription, writing a thesis or dissertation becomes much easier.

Market Research and Its Significance in Expanding Business Opportunities

Market Research and Its Significance in Expanding Business Opportunities

Research and Significance in Expanding BusinessWalmart acquiring Jet.com is the latest news being discussed widely in business circles now, with some praising the move as a win for both companies and some others having reservations regarding the wisdom of the move. Jet.com, the e-commerce stores has been sold out to the huge multinational retail corporation Walmart for $ 3 billion. Jet.com had little if no chance of achieving its sky high goals of becoming a $40 billion company in 5 years. One of the largest e-commerce acquisitions in the United States in many years, the sale is expected to give investors a handsome return. Walmart on its part would improve its e-commerce business and gain access to the younger, wealthier and more urban shoppers of Jet. This merge also shows the keen interest of Walmart to expand and make its online presence and reach out to more potential customers.

According to market research analyst Oliver Chen, the future of retails is in the integration of physical stores and online stores. Recently Amazon, the largest internet based retailer, opened its physical book store and has plans to open up more stores in other categories. Similarly, other online stores such as Blue Nile and War by Parkers have also expanded to physical retail stores.

With the economy becoming more and more competitive each passing day, having good knowledge about the market condition and buying behaviour of the customer is essential for launching any product or service. Similarly, staying abreast of business acquisitions such as the above is also necessary. Market research refers to the process of gathering information such as current market trends, spending traits of customers etc to determine whether a product or service will satisfy the need of customers. Here comes the relevance of market research and research transcription services. Market research transcription is provided by general transcription companies, and is a great resource for companies to document their research findings.

Why Companies Need Market Research

Comprehensive market research and review is vital for every aspect of business, ranging from product design to marketing strategy. This involves capturing insights from sources such as consumer forums, opinion polls, interviews, focus groups and so on. Market research helps business organizations to keep up with the latest market trends and gain a competitive advantage in the market.

Market research help companies to:

  • Analyze new areas of expansion
  • Identify problem areas
  • Understand the needs of the customers
  • Identify new business opportunities
  • Set achievable goals for business growth and product development
  • Make the right business decisions

To obtain accurate documentation of the research transcribing your findings and documenting them correctly is critical. All types of market research recordings from focus groups, interviews, and just research dictations can use professional transcription services to speed up the documentation.

Ultimately a good market research helps you identify opportunities and help you expand your business with less risk. A well studies approach is always better as you continue to grow. To quote Neil Armstrong “ Research is Creating New Knowledge”.

Research Transcription Services to Support Qualitative Studies

Research Transcription Services to Support Qualitative Studies

Research Transcription ServicesQualitative research enables in-depth analysis of phenomena in many fields such as academics, marketing, media, and more. Researchers conduct focused studies of small groups of people to direct and support the construction of their hypotheses. Transcription plays a key role in presenting and assessing the results of qualitative research. Companies that offer research transcription services can provide fast and accurate transcripts of one-to-one interviews or large focus group discussions.

Whether it is to capture every utterance in as much detail as possible or to get non-verbatim transcripts devoid of grammatical errors, background noises and idiosyncratic elements of speech such as stutters, pauses, non-verbal communication, and involuntary vocalizations,  reliable general transcription companies can provide good results in quick turnaround time.

Qualitative Research for Insightful Outcomes

The main advantage of qualitative studies is that they enable evaluation of complex issues, an exercise that quantitative methods do not allow. They provide insightful outcomes:

  • Interviews or group discussions bring the respondents together as they build on each others’ views and comments
  • Allow various issues to be discussed in detail
  • Allow the researcher to investigate beyond the initial responses and rationales
  • Questions can be guided/redirected by the researcher in real time
  • Reveals subtleties and complexities about the research subjects and/or topic
  • Study framework and direction can be quickly revised as new information emerges

Most important, the researcher gets the opportunity to observe, record and interpret non-verbal communication (i.e., body language, voice intonation) of the respondents, which is valuable during interviews or discussions, and during analysis. This task is made easier by a professional online transcription company.

How Professional Research Transcription Services Work

An experienced transcription service provider can transcribe all recording formats. They offer flexible upload options such as secure FTP for file transfer. Their team of expert transcriptionists can provide accurate documentation of the recorded data. These companies have proofreaders and quality control experts to ensure the accuracy of the output. After the files are transcribed and checked they are uploaded on the secure FTP server for downloading by the client. The benefits of signing up with a reliable interview transcription company include:

  • Precise and fast transcription
  • Secure workflow and processing
  • Time synchronizing to link each word in the file to the correct point in the audio or video
  • Security of information guaranteed

Once the data is transcribed, the text can be analyzed to obtain key insights and examples, and assess sentiments, and patterns. As they are easily accessible, researchers can quickly skim the transcripts to assess the relevance of the interviews, which makes their work much easier.

Why Market Research and Analysis Is Important for Business

Why Market Research and Analysis Is Important for Business

Market Research and AnalysisMarket research is an organized effort to collect and maintain the complete information obtained about target markets or customers via focus groups and interviews. You need to understand people’s preferences, reactions and attitude towards a product/service so that you can stay more informed and make better business decisions. For example, good research can provide you with many options to launch new products or enter new markets. Documenting market research accurately with the help of business transcription services is very important.

There are mainly two types of market research such as:

  • Primary research – Primary market research information is collected by talking to customers or competitors. This is typically the most valuable information for your business. The research will be carried out in the form of interviews, questionnaires, opinion polls, feedback forms and surveys. You may need to have questionnaires filled up in a specific format so that you can easily manage and work on them. Or you may want the opinion polls transcribed in a more organized manner. Sometimes transcription may have to be done from image files (PNG, JPEG and GIF) and audio files in mp4, mp3 or AVI formats. It is here that professional market research transcriptionists can provide you with the right services.
  • Secondary research – This involves using the results of research conducted by other sources. The sources may include Yellow Pages, internet search engines, trade or industry organizations and so on. Although this type of research may not be accurate as primary research, it can be a cost-effective way of collecting information regarding the marketplace and general industry trends.

Both types of research are crucial for your business. Sometimes, doing a quick search through search engines can bring you the needed information while there are times when more effective research may be required. For example, you can simply search for new fashion trends on the Internet to come up with new ideas for your brand of jeans. However, if you want to know customers’ views on new trends, you should conduct an opinion poll or survey.

Whether you are planning to start a new business or are already in business, market research is crucial. In the earlier case, good research will help you reduce the risk involved with getting into a new business as you can show some evidence of research to the people you approach for help. In the latter case, market research information will be necessary for your daily business operations. The other ways market research can help you are:

  • Determine whether customers are satisfied and if not, what went wrong
  • Gives you an edge over your competitors
  • Identify warning signals in your business
  • Find out which advertising media works best for your business
  • Keep tabs on new technology in your industry

In short, market research will help you find the threats and opportunities in your business to make effective decisions that will help business growth.

Relevance of Documenting Market Research Properly

More meaningful documentation of market research data can be used as references for business decision making. Transcription service providers offering the service of transcriptionists can help you with presenting each market research transcript in the required formats.