Deals with the why and how of social research. Covers two main themes: the epistemology of social science and the logic of research design. Students learn to assess the strengths of various methodologies, evaluate research results, and initiate future inquiries of their own.
This course introduces students to the how and why of social science research. We focus on the epistemology and methods of social research by asking the questions, How do we know what we know and, what methods do we use to determine what we know? Emphasis is placed on the logic of social science research and the variations in study designs used to conduct social science research. In order to gain real world experience and to develop marketable occupational skills students are expected to engage in a community based research project to answer a research question of interest to community partners. Students will question the underlying assumptions of various research approaches and methods for understanding their social phenomenon. Class time will be used for lectures, collaborative work, answering students questions, quizzes and exams.
Student learning goals
(1)Brief introduction to research language and concepts.
(2)Understand the purpose of social science research.
(3)Understand various research designs and methods used in social science.
(4)Understand ethical issues related to quantitative and qualitative research designs.
(5)Understand the basic process of developing and executing a research project.
General method of instruction
Class assignments and grading