Research Methods in Social Sciences

Research fellow Ringa Raudla

The aim of the course is to offer thorough theoretical and practical knowledge on the nature of social science and provide guidelines for conducting an empirical scientific study. The course will provide an overview of the different kinds of methods that can be used in social science (qualitative vs quantitative methods), explain the main concepts of scientific work, explain the need for and the essence of research design, and elaborate on the different phases of research process. The course will give detailed guidelines on how to conduct a case study and a comparative study, how to collect information with the aid of interviews and questionnaires and how to analyse the collected data. In addition to practical issues, the course will address the questions of epistemology, ontology, methodology and the problem of quantification in the context of public administration. 

Johnson, Gail. 2002. Research Methods for Public Administrators. Westport, Connecticut, London: Quorum Books.
Mahoney, James and Gary Goertz. 2006. “A Tale of Two Cultures: Contrasting Quantitative and Qualitative Research.” Political Analysis 14: 227–249.
Marsh, David & Gerry Stoker(eds.). 2002. Theory and Methods in Political Science (2nd ed.). Palgrave Macmillan.
Yin, Robert K. 2003. Case Study Research: Design and Methods. Thousand Oaks, Cal.: Sage Publications.

Credits: 6
Grade: Yes
Mandatory: No