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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Social and Political Science : Postgrad (School of Social and Political Studies)

Postgraduate Course: Advanced Issues in Sociological Research and Sociology Writing Workshop (SCIL11007)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Social and Political Science CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits40 ECTS Credits20
SummaryThe course focuses on the articulation of the sociological perspective into the design of research projects, data collection and analysis. It draws on current research projects in the Sociology group, which are at the leading edge of the discipline, and entail the creation of new quantitative and qualitative data sets, as well as the analysis of secondary and archival data. Examples of current substantive research themes are national identity; society, governance and politics in a devolved Britain; family and intimate relationships; demographic change in Europe; organisational case studies; South Asian societies; sociology of financial markets; narrative and auto/biography; contemporary culture and scientific and technological knowledge.
Topics covered
During the Autumn Semester advanced techniques of research design, data collection and analysis are examined, using ongoing research projects to contextualise and demonstrate, for example, the use of statistical analysis techniques, case study, documentary and archival analysis and ethnography. Ethical and political considerations, and questions of epistemology and ontology, are set in the context of specific projects.

In the Spring Semester, the emphasis is on conceptual, logistical, ethical and practical issues in sociological research in relation to the students' own work. The focus is the transition from theoretical and empirical literature to formulation of original research.

Course description Not entered
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2015/16, Available to all students (SV1) Quota:  25
Course Start Full Year
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Please contact the School directly for a breakdown of Learning and Teaching Activities
Assessment (Further Info) Please contact the School directly for a breakdown of Assessment Methods
Additional Information (Assessment) Students submit notes on key readings; make an oral presentation to staff and postgraduates focusing specifically on research design related to their work; submit a written version of the presentation and prepare a poster outlining their research interests. This acts as preparatory work for the dissertation and, where relevant, the PhD. Students are also expected to complete a number of short, practical assignments for the Writing Workshop component of the course.

Feedback Not entered
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Critically engage in debate with researchers who are generating and analysing quantitative and qualitative data, and solving the epistemological, political, ethical and practical problems entailed
  2. Evaluate and design the sociological formulation of research questions, design, methods and data analysis
  3. Use at a high level of sophistication a range of data sources and techniques for their analysis
  4. Effectively present their research plans orally to their peers and colleagues
Reading List
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Liliana Riga
Tel: (0131 6)51 1853
Course secretaryMr Andrew Macaulay
Tel: (0131 6)51 5067
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