Advanced Social Research
Credits: 4 ECTS
This course provides a broad introduction to social science methodology. Its main focus are issues of research design that confront both quantitative and qualitative research alike. As such, the course will be less concerned with introducing students to specific methodological techniques (e.g., regression analysis, interviewing, archival work, participant observation). Rather, the course is primarily about the essential logic that underpins social scientific research. You will learn about how to come up with a research question, how to construct theories and translate them into testable hypotheses, how to think about research questions in terms of variables, how to select cases that are appropriate to answer your research question, how to move from concepts and theories to the measurement of empirical indicators, and how to make descriptive and causal inferences. In tackling these issues, the course combines readings on methodology with recent works from comparative politics and political development that illustrate how to do methodologically sound research.
- Class participation: 15%
- Research evaluation (group work): 25%
- Serving as a discussant to evaluate a student's proposal: 10%
- Final research proposal: 50%