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Robert Crosnoe, Chair CLA 3.306, Mailcode A1700, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-232-6300

Fall 2005

SOC 388m • Integrating Qualitative and Quantitative Methods

Unique Days Time Location Instructor
45750 W
1:00 PM-4:00 PM
bur 214
Buckley

Course Description

This course seeks to examine the possibilities and problems associated with the integration of qualitative and qualitative methodologies, and the importance of mixed methodological approaches for comparative research. It uses a "hands on" approach to data collection and analysis, with assignments focused on gaining experience with specific methodological approaches. By the end of the course you will be familiar with research ethics, the basic epistemological challenges associated with qualitative and quantitative approaches, central issues in probability and non-probability sampling and case selection, basic survey construction and analysis, observational investigations, focus groups, and in-depth interviews. As our time in the course is limited, a grant proposal takes the places of a formal research paper as the final project, in order to enable participants to formally design a mixed methods study, ideally for future completion at a later date.

Our central goal is examining the ways in which combining methodological tools can be used to strengthen the validity or reliability of research findings. At present, mixed methodological approaches are strongly encouraged by funding agencies and other academic gatekeepers but remain relatively rare. While the seminar is focused primarily upon issues related to the mixing of methodology, even those anticipating a career as an acolyte of ethnography or an unapologetic analyst of secondary data can benefit from learning about the norms, methods, and principles concerning how the "other half" works. In each seminar we will cover key methodological elements of a variety of specific methods, explore examples of research utilizing the methodology, and discuss linkages and fissures between the key assumptions of and data generated by qualitative and quantitative approaches to epistemology and analysis.

Texts

  • Fiske, Merton, Kendall, Gollin, 1990. The Focused Interview. Free Press.
  • Creswell, 2003. Research Design: Qualitative, Quantitative and Mixed Methods Approaches, 2nd Edition. Sage Publishing.
  • Henry, 1990. Practical Sampling. Sage Publishing.
  • Morgan, 1988. Focus Groups as Qualitative Research. Sage.
  • Yin, 2003. Case Study Research: Design and Methods. Sage.
  • Converse and Presser, 1986. Survey Questions: Handcrafting the Standardized Questionnaire. Sage.
  • Richie, Doing Oral History.
  • Handouts and Web Readings (mainly web readings)

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