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SOC101Y1 Lecture Notes - Dependent And Independent Variables, Response Bias, Operationalization

7 pages21 viewsWinter 2011

Course Code
Sheldon Ungar

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Sociology, Lecture 19&20
March 30 & April 6, 2011
1Research Methods
Reality is not a thing that is out there that we can perceive objectively. Our experience
blurs our perception of reality.
4 Filters of the way we see the world/reality
1) Values – what we consider to be important and how we see the world.
Determine what theories we might be inclined to accept that match our values
2) Theories
3) Existing research – were always consulting what people have done before us to find out
what we know about the given subject. Were influenced by our past research
4) Methods -- collecting data, different methods allow us to collect different kinds of data.
Different kinds of data make us look at the world different. Different tools, different bits.
We can never perceive anything in a purely objective form. We can
use certain techniques of data collection and analysis that will
minimize our bias. These techniques may help us increase our
consensus that exists to extend our .
They draw us certain kinds of problems.
Objective is a reality check.
The Research Cycle
1) Figure out what matters to you – different issues matter to different people.
a.You interest in stuff has an impact on you
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Sociology, Lecture 19&20
March 30 & April 6, 2011
2) Formulate a testable theory (a tentative explanation of a phenomenon)
a.Implying that it is testable/falsifiable. A way to figure out the degree of truth.
3) Review existing literature – want to find out what other people have found
a.Prevent you from duplicating effort. You want to create new knowledge
4) Select method(s) – experiments, analyse official documents/statistics, observational.
5) Collect data
6) Treat subjects ethically
7) Analyze data
8) Report results
Research Ethics
Respect your subjects’ right to safety. Do your subjects no harm and, in particular,
give them the right to decide whether and how they can be studied.
Respect your subjects’ right to informed consent. Tell subjects how the information
they supply will be used and allow them to judge the degree of personal risk involved
in supplying it.
Respect your subjects’ right to privacy. Allow subjects the right to decide whether and
how the information they supply may be revealed to the public.
Respect your subjects’ right to confidentiality. Refrain from using information in a
way that allows it to be traced to a particular subject.
Do not falsify data. Report findings as they are, not as you would like them to be.
Do not plagiarize. Explicitly identify, credit, and reference authors when making use
of their written work in any form, including Web posting.
Step 5: Collecting Data
Participant observation – the immediate social environment becomes a sociological
laboratory (any social setting)
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