Sociology 480

SOCY 480

Catalog Entry

SOCY 480: Survey Research Methods
Three hours lecture.

Prerequisite: SOCY 380; Junior or senior standing.

This course covers the construction of an instrument, sampling design and methods of analysis and interpretation of data. It acquaints students with the use of computers for social science research. Students gain a hands-on experience with design and completion of survey research that is valuable for any student entering a career requiring familiarity with the basis of social survey research.


Detailed Description of Content of Course

1. Selection of Research Problem
2. Deciding on choice of survey method.
3. Construction of questionnaire or instrument
4. Sample selection
5. Collection of Data
6. Quantification and analysis of data
7. Statistical analysis of data
8. Preparation of professional research articles
9. The publication/presentation process
10. Ethical Problems in survey research


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

An informal approach is used in classroom lectures in which students are deeply involved in all aspects of the research process. Students spend most of the semester designing and conducting an independent research project with the help and guidance of the professor and other students.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

Students will be able to sharpen research skills gained in SOC 380 and fully design and complete an independent research project; this would prepare students for careers in which survey research skills are needed or to enter graduate programs that require theses or dissertations and to succeed in the research requirements of these programs.


Assessment Measures

Graded assignments may include a mid-term exam and a final exam, various graded assignments and drafts of research papers, and in-class or out-of-class assignments. The majority of the grade reflects the students progress on an independent research project and the preparation of an article based on that project.


Other Course Information

Students in this course will be expected to be well-versed in the selection of appropriate statistical procedures to complete research problems, and the use of the computer to apply those choices to their own data sets. Students enrolled in this course for graduate credit will be expected to complete all course requirements for undergraduate students, and, in addition, will be expected to include a sample that is more representative of the student population than is expected for undergraduates. Graduate students will also be expected to write a grant application for research funding and to present their finished work orally to the class.


Review and Approval

January, 2004 Reviewed Peggy A. Shifflett