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Course, academic year 2023/2024
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Research Methods in Social Sciences - JSB722
Title: Research Methods in Social Sciences
Guaranteed by: Department of Sociology (23-KS)
Faculty: Faculty of Social Sciences
Actual: from 2022
Semester: winter
E-Credits: 7
Examination process: winter s.:
Hours per week, examination: winter s.:1/1, Ex [HT]
Capacity: unlimited / unlimited (16)
Min. number of students: unlimited
4EU+: no
Virtual mobility / capacity: no
State of the course: taught
Language: English
Teaching methods: full-time
Teaching methods: full-time
Additional information: https://dl1.cuni.cz/course/view.php?id=13909
Note: course can be enrolled in outside the study plan
enabled for web enrollment
Guarantor: doc. Mgr. Martin Hájek, Ph.D.
Teacher(s): doc. Mgr. Martin Hájek, Ph.D.
Mgr. Jiří Remr, Ph.D.
Mgr. Barbora Spalová, Ph.D.
Class: Courses for incoming students
Is pre-requisite for: JSB734, JSB732, JSB735
Annotation
The course is open only to students of the Social Sciences (SOSCI) programme and visiting sociology students under the Erasmus+ programme. Please do not enrol in the course if you are not studying another programme.

This introductory course of research methods deals with the most important issues in scientific research. It describes the main steps of an analytical investigation and provides an overview of practical procedures, methods and instruments. The key methodological cornerstones (e.g. defining the research problems, setting the research design, choosing the proper data generation method, and utilization of analytical techniques) are discussed in detail. The students will learn the basics of social research methodology.
Last update: Hájek Martin, doc. Mgr., Ph.D. (23.09.2023)
Aim of the course

Course Objective

1. Understanding of the logic of social science research methodology.
2. Capability to use selected methodological concepts and to apply them in designing social research.

Last update: Hájek Martin, doc. Mgr., Ph.D. (24.07.2020)
Course completion requirements

Assignments:
Lecture attendance or equivalent in online lectures
Preparation for lectures
Preparation for seminars
Presentation at the seminar: in the last two weeks
Final exam: a test of 3 questions from the lectures/seminars and reading
Term paper: write a social research proposal on the topic of your choice

Grade composition:
Active participation (attendance): max. 24 points
Presentation: max 12 points
Final exam: max 24 points
Term paper: max 40 points

Grades:
91 - 100 points: A
81 - 90 points: B
71 - 80 points: C
61 - 70 points: D
51 - 60 points: E
50 and less points: F

Last update: Hájek Martin, doc. Mgr., Ph.D. (24.08.2021)
Literature

Obligatory reading:
Selected chapters from following textbooks:
Babbie, E. ( 1995) The Practice of Social Research (7th edition), SAGE.
Gliner, J. A.; Morgan, G. A. (2000). Research Methods in Applied Settings (An Integrated Approach to Design and Analysis) . New Jersey, LEA Publishing
Schutt, R. K., (2005). Investigating the Social World. The Process and Practice of Research . Boston, Sage Publications (4th ed.)
Strauss, A., & Corbin, J. (1998). Basics of qualitative research techniques . Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage publications.

Recommended reading:
Textbooks:
Babbie, E. ( 1995) The Practice of Social Research (7th edition), SAGE.
Hammersley, M. & Atkinson, P. (2007): Ethnography: Principles in practice. London & New York: Routledge
Gliner, J. A.; Morgan, G. A. (2000). Research Methods in Applied Settings (An Integrated Approach to Design and Analysis). New Jersey, LEA Publishing
Schutt, R. K., (2005). Investigating the Social World. The Process and Practice of Research . Boston, Sage Publications (4th ed.)
Strauss, A., & Corbin, J. (1998). Basics of qualitative research techniques . Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage publications.

Last update: Hájek Martin, doc. Mgr., Ph.D. (13.09.2020)
Syllabus

Week 1: Introduction

  1. About the course, lecturers and students
  2. Lectures and seminars
  3. Assignments
  4. Lay people and expert knowledge. Presentation

Week 2: Social Theory and Social Research: Doing Social Science

  1. Empirical and theoretical knowledge. Presentation
  2. Induction and deduction. Presentation
  3. Quantitative, measurement-oriented approach and qualitative, meaning-oriented approach. Presentation
  4. Sampling.

Reading: Babbie ch. 1 and 32-57, Schutt 644-653; Gliner-Leech-Morgan 3-20

Week 3: Formulation of Research Problem 

  1. What is a research problem Presentation. (Propose a simple research problem)
  2. What is a research question Presentation (Propose a research question)

Reading: Corbin-Strauss 52-56; Gliner-Leech-Morgan 23-29, 45-52

Week 4: How to start with qualitative research

  1. Finding the research problem and question suitable for qualitative research (S: formulating the qualitative research question)
  2. Main modes of qualitative data production (S: which combination would keep the things plumb)
  3. Research journal: place for reflexivity (S: where to start to write)
  4. Reading qualitative research  to start your own (S: bibliographical research)

Reading: Corbin - Strauss: 52-75

Week 5: Modes of Qualitative Data Production

  1. Ethnography (S: inducting main features of ethnographic knowledge from cases)
  2. Observation (S: whose fieldnotes are the most complex? )
  3. Position of the observer (S: discussion: limits of participation?) 
  4. How to write fieldnotes

Reading: Corbin-Strauss: 56-58, 60-67; Babbie: 287- 296

Suggested reading: Hammersley - Atkinson: 1-5

Homework:  to perform an observation and write down the fieldnotes, min. 250 words

Week 6: Analysis of Data in Qualitative Research 

  1. Presentation and reflections on homeworks
  2. Types of Interviewing (S: active listening and entering the world of speaker, asking open ended narrative questions)  
  3. Open  and thematic coding (S: Coding a text)
  4. Memoing (S: write down different types of memos)

Reading: Corbin-Strauss: 103-121

Week 7: Operationalization, Types of Quantitative Data, Variables, Analytical Research Design

  1. Hypotheses; conceptualization, operationalization (S: create on operational definition of the given term)
  2. Exploration, description, explanation, prediction; time-frame in research design
  3. Variables, attributes; measurement, types of data (S: define a variable for given topic)
  4. Sampling techniques

Reading: Babbie

Week 8: Modes of Quantitative Data Production (Fieldwork Techniques)

  1. Primary and secondary research
  2. Interviews, CAPI, CATI
  3. SAQ, CAWI
  4. Observation

Reading: Babbie

Week 9: Quantitative Analysis of Research Findings

  1. Analytical strategies; principles and elements of analysis
  2. Presenting numerical information
  3. Data visualization

Reading: Babbie

Week 10: Research Project

      How to write a research project

Week 11: Final seminar with presentations on the topics of the term papers

First round.

Week 12: Final seminar with presentations on the topics of the term papers

Second round.

Last update: Hájek Martin, doc. Mgr., Ph.D. (20.09.2022)
 
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