As social beings, each of us experience and make claims about the world. As social scientists, in order to make credible claims, we must base them in rigorous research practices. This course will provide a general understanding of these research methods in order to give you the tools to conduct your own research and evaluate the research of others.
This course’s official description is, “An introduction to the major research methods in the behavioral sciences, to include survey, experimental and field research. The logic, design and execution of the research process are considered with concern for elementary analysis of data.”
Through our readings, discussions and the creation of your own research proposal, the goal of this course is for you to understand the social science research process, the various methods that researchers use to figure out social problems, why they use certain methods over others for different problems, and what it means to actually do social science research.
Prerequisites: ENG 201, and PSY 101 or SOC 101, and junior standing or above
By the end of the semester students will be able to:
Identify various methods used in criminological and social science research
Discuss elements of the research process including forming a hypothesis, designing a project, sampling, analyzing data, and considering ethical concerns
Design a research project using social science methods to collect and analyze data
Analyze data to understand a social problem
Synthesize methodological knowledge, literature on a social problem, and data analyses into written assignments, class discussions, and a final research proposal