Research Methods 1

Module code: SY1013

Module co-ordinator: Jerry Coulton

This module will introduce you to the fundamental issues of research design in the social sciences, and will also enable you to assess the research of others. The fundamental question we will address is: how do we know that what we think we know is actually true? In other words, what is the basis for our knowledge? Answers to these questions are important not only for conducting research but also for becoming wise consumers of existing research and other forms of 'information'.

Topics covered

  • Transforming topics of interest into researchable questions
  • Conceptualising ideas
  • Operationalising concepts
  • Creating measures and indicators
  • Establishing a basis for generalising one's findings
  • Common modes of data collection and research: experiments, surveys, field observations, content analysis, and the use of photographic evidence


  • Eighteen one-hour lectures
  • Eight one-hour seminars


  • A research proposal of 3,000 words (100%)