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The goal of most researchers is to establish competence in one’s profession; however, the degree to which this is measured in a research course is undetermined. The assessment of research competency usually involves the distinct measures of statistical ability, writing ability, and other skills that are quantifiable. Soft skills in research, on the other hand, are less distinguishable. It was the intent of this study to review eight years of data collection in undergraduate and graduate research classes to determine if a set of specific assignments was successful in developing the soft skills of research competence. Through a qualitative assessment, evaluation of visual materials, and assessment of a research instructional video, it was found that, to some extent, isolated and specific whole-part-whole, in-class and in-field assignments for the individual student or students within small groups, might allow students to develop the hard and soft skills necessary to become competent as researchers or their chosen profession.
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