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Midterm

Study Guide for Midterm: Textbook Notes

7 Pages
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Department
Sociology
Course Code
SOCA02H3
Professor
Malcolm Mac Kinnon

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SOCA02 Textbook Notes
Chapter 2: How Sociologists Do Research
Values -> Theories -> Previous Research -> Methods -!³5HDOLW\´
Conducting Research
The Research Cycle:
1) Formulate Question
2) Review existing Literature
3) Select Method
4) Collect Data
5) Analyze Data
6) Report Results
Ethical Consideration ± ³GRQRKDUPUHVSHFWVXEMHFWV¶ULJKWV´
- Right to safety
- Right to privacy
- Right to confidentiality
- Right to informed consent
The Main Methods of Sociology: participant observation, experiments, survey, past documents
Field research ± research based on the observation of people in their natural settings
- Detached observation ± classifying and counting the behaviour of interest according to a
predetermined scheme
o Hawthorne effect ± presence of researcher changes results
o Meaning ± may be vague to the researcher
- Ethonographic research ± learning the entire way of life of a people (opposite of detach)
o Going Native ± giving up their research role and becoming members of the group
they are studying
Participant Observation ± attempt to observe a social milieu objectively and take part in the
activities of the people they are studying
- Professional Fence ± person who buys and sells stolen goods
Lesson in Method
- Exploratory research ± researchers first have only a vague sense of what they are looking
for and perhaps no sense at all of what they will discover in the course of their study
- Hypothesis ± unverified but testable statements about the phenomena
- Grounded theory ± an explanation of a phenomenon based not on mere speculation but on
controlled scrutiny of subjects
Methodological Problems
Measurement:
- Variables ± concepts that have more than one value
- Operationalization ± deciding which observations to link to which variables
Reliability ± would another researcher interpret or measure things in the same way
Validity ± is it measuring what it is suppose to measure
Generalizability ± can it be applied to general population
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Experiments ± a carefully controlled artificial situation that allows researchers to isolate
hypothesized causes and measure their effects precisely
- Randomization
- Experimental group
- Control group
- Dependent variable ± WKH³HIIHFW´LQDQ\FDXVHDQGHIIHFWUHODWLRQVKLS
- Independent variable ± WKHSUHVXPHG³FDXVLQDQ\FDXVH-effect relationship
Surveys ± people are asked questions about knowledge, attitudes, behaviour etc.
Sampling:
- Voluntary
- Representative
- Convenience
- Probability sample ± UHVSRQGHQWVFKRVHQDWUDQGRPS
- Sampling frame ± list of all the people in the population of interest
- Margin of error - Tolerate 5% chance
Survey Questions and Validity
- Undercounting ± due to imperfect sampling frame
- Non-response bias ± need response to be around 70%
- Response bias ± do not answer accurately
- Wording effect ± the way it is phrased or ordered
Causality
1) Time order criterion ± A before B
2) Association criterion ± correlation of A to B
3) Spuriousness criterion ± not from another factor or third variable
4) Rationale criterion ± the existHQFHRID³OLQN´
Reading Tables
- Contingency table ± (Matrix) a cross-classification of cases by at least two variables that
allows you to see how variables are associated
Analysis of Existing Documents and Official Statistics
- Diaries, newspapers, and published historical works
Advantages: low cost, high quality data, historical analysis, reactivity is not a problem
Disadvantage: may not be entirely relevant
The Importance of Being Subjective
Method
Strengths
Weaknesses
Participant
Observation
- discover their worldview
- good for exploratory research & grounded
theory
- high internal validity
- low reliability
- low external validity/generalize
- not very good C-E relationships
Experiments
- high reliability
- good for C-E relationships
- low validity for many
sociological problems
Surveys
- good reliability
- good for C-E relationships
- good generalizability
- some problems with validity but
some are fixable
Analysis of Existing
documents and
official statistics
- inexpensive, easy to obtain, good coverage
-nonreactive
- useful for historical analysis
- contains biases reflecting
interests of their creators and not
the interest of researcher
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Description
SOCA02 Textbook Notes Chapter 2: How Sociologists Do Research Values -> Theories -> Previous Research -> Methods -#0,OL9 Conducting Research The Research Cycle: 1) Formulate Question 2) Review existing Literature 3) Select Method 4) Collect Data 5) Analyze Data 6) Report Results Ethical Consideration 434K,7270850.98:-M0.987LJK98 - Right to safety - Right to privacy - Right to confidentiality - Right to informed consent The Main Methods of Sociology: participant observation, experiments, survey, past documents Field research research based on the observation of people in their natural settings - Detached observation classifying and counting the behaviour of interest according to a predetermined scheme o Hawthorne effect presence of researcher changes results o Meaning may be vague to the researcher - Ethonographic research learning the entire way of life of a people (opposite of detach) o Going Native giving up their research role and becoming members of the group they are studying Participant Observation attempt to observe a social milieu objectively and take part in the activities of the people they are studying - Professional Fence person who buys and sells stolen goods Lesson in Method - Exploratory research researchers first have only a vague sense of what they are looking for and perhaps no sense at all of what they will discover in the course of their study - Hypothesis unverified but testable statements about the phenomena - Grounded theory an explanation of a phenomenon based not on mere speculation but on controlled scrutiny of subjects Methodological Problems Measurement: - Variables concepts that have more than one value - Operationalization deciding which observations to link to which variables Reliability would another researcher interpret or measure things in the same way Validity is it measuring what it is suppose to measure Generalizability can it be applied to general population www.notesolution.com
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