Dr. Manuel Beronilla is a contributing faculty member at NHU in the Mathematics and Science department. He is a former tenured professor of University of Rizal System (URS) and was also coordinator of the statistical center, overseeing the university's undergraduate research statistics. In addition, Dr. Beronilla headed URS’s College of Information Management in 2010.
As a URS Outstanding Research Award winner in 2010, Dr. Beronilla shares his advice with students on pursuing research projects and his best practices for conducting research.
Q. What advice do you have for students who wish to pursue research projects, both within and outside of academia?
Conducting research allows you to pursue your interests, further the knowledge you gained in academia, develop your problem-solving skills, and contribute to knowledge. Here is some advice for students who wish to do research:
- Choose a topic that you are passionate about. There is no substitute for a task that you love.
- Keep in contact with your professor; ask for help from experts, other researchers in your field, librarians, and people in the department where you are working. It is also good to have a support group—people you can talk and brainstorm with at your level.
- Have a good research plan and stick with your schedule.
- Reward yourself. Break your plan into smaller pieces and reward yourself whenever you accomplish these smaller tasks.
- Write and revise. Plan to have your paper done ahead of time so you can have it critiqued by peers and experts. It is almost impossible to have a completely perfect paper in a single writing.
- Be the expert on your topic. After you are done, discuss your research with your peers or people close to you. The more you talk about your work, the more confident you will become and your enthusiasm to continue doing research will remain.
Q. What are your recommended best practices when conducting research?
Conducting valid and accurate research is imperative while in the academic environment. With my experience conducting and advising students doing research, here are some of the best practices for a more successful study:
- Have a specific goal. There is no substitute for having a specific problem and exerting efforts to arrive at a conclusion based on your objective.
- Explore various methods for collecting data, and consult experts as to the best method to use in your study.
- Select samples that will best represent your population. You do not want to generalize your findings based on an inappropriate sample.
- If applicable, pretest the questionnaires to avoid errors. The instrument you use is of vital importance. Be sure that the instrument used is really collecting the desired data.
- Use statistical and analytical reporting techniques appropriate to the data. You do not want to waste your effort by inappropriately reporting your findings.
- Reveal methods and objectives to permit evaluation and further investigation and replication.
Q. What makes you proud to be part of the NHU familia?
Nothing compares with the environment here at NHU. This is just my second year here and I already feel that I belong to a big family. It has always been my passion to help students and contribute to their success, and NHU lets me realize that passion. I appreciate the concern of the faculty and staff in assisting and making sure that the students are getting the education they deserve. The atmosphere of respect, care, and professionalism makes this institution a great training ground for future community leaders.