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Lecture

Research Methods

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Department
Sociology
Course
SOCI 100
Professor
Debra Pentecost
Semester
Fall

Description
Research Methods October-03-12 How Research filters perception Values -->Theories-->Previous Research-->Methods-->"Reality" Scientific Sociology: Concepts, Variables & Measurement Quantitative Research Design  Choose research problem & theoretical perspective to explore problem  Determine key concepts and variables  Construct testable hypothesis o Suggest causal relationship between 2 of these variables  Choose research method - argue why chosen (experiment, survey, secondary research using existing sources)  Create operational definitions (will allow empirical measurement of both variables)  Consider validity and reliability of definitions  Name control variables (third variable) think should be included o Third variables: those which must be held constant to ensure not looking at spurious correlation Terminology  Concepts: o Mental construct representing some aspect of world in simplified form - abstract ideas o Abstract labels for social life & categorizing people: "the family," "the economy," "social class"  Variable: o Concept that takes on two or more values  i.e. can exist in different types of amounts  Ex. (How much) Height, weight, income; (type) gender, ethnicity; upper/middle/lower class. o Ordered variables: how much a concept is present  Age, weight, temperature, income o Nominal variables: concept present/absent  Gender, political affiliation o Measuring precisely what one i
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