Choices – What should I be doing my masters degree on?

person_questionWell the time has come to choose a research topic for my masters program. Problem is I haven’t a clue what I should focus on. There are just too many considerations to be made.

To start, technology in education is such a vast area of study to delve into. How can you just pick one area? It is like becoming a Sommelier and only knowing about Merlot. I hope this doesn’t mean I have to do a PhD.

The second question/consideration is the biggest question of all. Why am I doing a masters in the first place? If the truth be known, the labour strife teachers have just finished enduring in British Columbia has made me want to just get out of public education all together. Our professor has told us to “follow our passions” but the problem is there isn’t much passion left. All that remains is just anger, spite and deep seeded need to escape.

Finally, I don’t think I had much of a passion to start with. Sure I love technology and the things it can do for you but can I really consider this a “passion”? Some of my classmates are clearly passionate about very specific areas of education and have spent an entire career becoming expert practitioners of their craft. I on the other hand I have spend a career as a Jack of all trades and a master of none. I can’t really lay claim to an expertise in anything, never mind a passion.

So where does this leave me? Well I have had a few areas of interest over the years that have garnered some attention from my peers and it is from these I am sure I will choose. They include:

  • Effects of technology on learning in the primary years
  • Elements of the ideal digital learning environment
  • The role of immersive technologies in education
  • Traditional learning tools Vs Digital learning tools
  • Free Agent Learning who and what is it good for?
  • iPads vs Laptops the ultimate learning platform
  • Effective professional development for integrating technology into the classroom.

Ultimately I think my choice will be based on three utilitarian criteria rather than any deep seeded passion.

  1. What do I want to spend hundreds of hours studying?
  2. What area of study is the road less traveled?
  3. Where will my masters work take me in the years to come?

Wish me luck… This is one difficult decision.


  1. Tracy Bachellier

    I can relate, Keith. It’s hard to narrow down a single “passion” when your interests are so vast. I started with a list of over 30 potential educational research questions, all areas of interest to me. I would have been happy to tackle any of them 🙂 Keep challenging yourself with criteria and it will soon appear. I’m leaning towards your first listed topic above, but that’s just me – I’ll be interested to know what you finally decide, let me know! And good luck, be sure to jump in with both feet and enjoy the journey!

  2. donnaritchie

    Wishing you luck however I don’t think you’ll need any. Your ability to wrestle through thoughts and ideas and express yourself with clarity will serve you well on your masters adventure. Instead of luck, I wish you time management, the loving patience of your family and a sense of humour thar sees you through the tough spots. Cheers.

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