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Procedures for Conducting Research

Submission of Research Proposal

Along with a research proposal, submit a research summary which should be submitted as a Word or Word Perfect document, (see example below), a cover letter stating the name and address of the institution/individual for which the research is being conducted; the nature of the research effort (i.e., whether it is a dissertation requirement, a grant, etc.,); qualifications of the researcher; contact information (i.e., daytime phone number, e-mail address); and any other pertinent information to the study.

Research Summary Example:

Who (name of researcher and affiliation) wants to study/investigate what (description of what you want to study) and is seeking participation from who (which schools or which teachers or which students – numbers and types) which would involve what (description of time involved from participants, measures used, other requirements of participating) and (if applicable), the researcher has already discussed this study with who (anyone in CCSD who has been part of discussions) and they feel what (e.g., are in support, want to participate, etc.). The benefits to participants will be what (describe how participants would benefit) and the benefits to CCSD will be what (describe how CCSD would benefit).

Please email a copy of your research summary (Word or Word Perfect document), cover letter and proposal to: Dr. Joanna Gilmore or JoAnne Daquigan


The Charleston County School District (CCSD) welcomes and outside organizations and individuals to conduct school-based research projects that are designed to contribute to the improvement of student achievement.

All proposals for doing research within CCSD should be submitted to the Office of Assessment and Evaluation's Research Review Committee. The Committee consists of a chair and two or more other CCSD staff members. Each committee member independently reviews research proposals according to the following criteria:

  • The proposed study’s benefit to CCSD, our students, staff, etc.
  • The soundness of the proposed study’s research design
  • The amount of time required of participants and extent to which participation might interfere with ongoing instructional programs
  • The number of participants required
  • The legal, physical or psychological risks to which participants are exposed
  • The manner in which the participants will be informed about the study

NOTE: Please submit proposals at least six weeks prior to the time the study is to be conducted. Most proposals are reviewed within four to six weeks.

Even with district approval, participation in research studies is always voluntary. Schools, principals, teachers and students who do not wish to participate have a right to refuse. Pressure shall not be applied to promote participation. No research may be conducted during state or district-wide testing. The participants of research studies must receive and sign an informed consent form that acquaints them with the study. Parents of students asked to participate in research studies and the students themselves, when appropriate, should be informed of and/or provide signed consent forms addressing the following:

  1. The project’s purpose
  2. How the student was selected
  3. The procedure to be followed, including an easily understood, precise description of the child’s involvement
  4. Anticipated benefits for general knowledge, the student, and the District
  5. Possible physical, psychological, legal or other risks
  6. Whether students will be personally identifiable and to whom
  7. To whom results will be available and for what purpose
  8. Participants’ or parents’ right to inspect materials before consenting and to withdraw consent at any time
  9. The person to whom inquiries should be addressed before, during, and after the project
  10. That the school is neither conducting nor sponsoring the project, if that is the case
  11. The lack of adverse consequences for failure to participate

Informed consent forms must also contain the following sentences:

  • “I do not wish (my child) to participate” option on the form.
  • The school district is neither sponsoring nor conducting this research.
  • There is no penalty for not participating.
  • Participants may withdraw from the study at any time without penalty.

The research proposal must address the following issues:

  1. Purpose of the study and context (dissertation, grant received, grant applied for, etc.)
  2. Procedures that will be used:
    1. Data collection schedule
    2. Identification of intended schools/sites
    3. Selection method for participants/schools
    4. Impact on instructional time at the schools intended
    5. What participants will be asked to do
    6. Potential risks and benefits to the participants
    7. Informed consent form
    8. Written materials that participants will receive (e.g., surveys)
    9. Type of data collected and general overview of how the data will be used and/or analyzed
  3. Identification of CCSD administrators, staff, or others who researcher has communicated with about the project


Students working on their thesis/dissertation must also submit an approval letter from their ethics committee and a letter of support from their research advisor.

Completed Research

Once your project is finished, the District’s Research Review Committee would expects a copy of your report/write-up.

Contact Us

Thanks for your consideration of these research guidelines. If you need further assistance, please call (843) 937-6430.

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