Select a research method or methods to collect data.   How will you go about collecting data

Please choose one of the three following assignments to write your final paper for the course.  Please read the prompt carefully!  You must incorporate *all* questions.

Option One:

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If you choose this question, you will be preparing a research proposal on how you will be going about conducting a research project.  First, please use your readings and lectures to design your sociological research project proposal.  Select a topic.  Define the problem.   What two variables will you be examining?  Conceptualize and operationalize your variables.

Select a research method or methods to collect data.   How will you go about collecting data?   Will you use qualitative or quantitative or both types of methods?   Why are these methods best at getting at your research questions?  What are the ethical questions you will ask?  What is your hypothesis?  What types of measures will you use?  How will you insure reliability and validity?  Discuss the importance of your literature review (provide at least 3 outside sources of related literature review materials).  What theoretical perspectives will you use?   Will you employ inductive or deductive reasoning?     How will you analyze your data?  Will you use primary or secondary sources (or both)?  Is your study a theoretical study?  Is your study an empirically-based study?  What is the timeline of your research? Do you anticipate any costs for this research project?  What are the sociological implications of your selected study and research proposal?

Option Two:

Please develop a thesis if you choose this option.  What is the significance of doing sociological research?  What are the ways of knowing?  Discuss at least four “ways of knowing.”  How does sociology fit into these “ways of knowing?”   Incorporate in your analysis how “objective knowledge” and “subjective knowledge” play a role.  How would you incorporate the sociological imagination into your sociological research topic? Give some examples.   What makes sociology a science?  How is a sociological understanding of the world different from opinions?   How do sociologists makes sense of dialectics when conducting research. What are the similarities and differences between social scientific and biological scientific studies?


Option Three:

Research two sociological and/or social scientific studies that have already been conducted.  Compare and contrast these studies.   What are the purposes of these studies?  What were the hypotheses of these studies? How did the researchers define the problem.   What variables were being examined?  How did he/she/they conceptualize and operationalize his/her/their variables?  What research method/methods were used to collect data?  Did he/she/they use qualitative or quantitative methods?  What were they?  Were they effective?  Were the research projects valid?  reliable? What ethical questions were they grappling with, if any? What types of measures did they use?  Did they utilize inductive and deductive reasoning? How did they analyze their data? Did they use primary or secondary sources (or both)? Were these studies empirically-based?  Did they include human subjects? What were the main findings?   How important were these findings? What societal implications did these studies have?  How would you do your study differently if you were to select a similar topic?   Or how would you build on the studies already conducted? 

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