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Unit of study_

GOVT6139: Research Design

This unit will provide students with the fundamentals for constructing and conducting effective research projects in the social sciences. An overview of social science inquiry will be presented through an examination of the diversity in theoretical and methodological approaches used in research. This will include a focus on both primary research, using interviews and questionnaires, and secondary research, using statistical databases, content analysis and textual analysis. Both quantitative and qualitative methods will be covered in the unit, as will an overview of ethical practices associated with research design. The assessment will be based around constructing practical research projects that can be utilised in both university and workplace-based research.

Details

Academic unit Government and International Relations
Unit code GOVT6139
Unit name Research Design
Session, year
? 
Semester 1, 2020
Attendance mode Normal day
Location Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney
Credit points 6

Enrolment rules

Prohibitions
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None
Prerequisites
? 
None
Corequisites
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None
Available to study abroad and exchange students

No

Teaching staff and contact details

Coordinator Sarah Cameron, sarah.cameron@sydney.edu.au
Lecturer(s) Sarah Cameron , sarah.cameron@sydney.edu.au
Type Description Weight Due Length
Assignment Essay
n/a
35% Week 07
Due date: 09 Apr 2020 at 23:59
2000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4
Assignment Proposal
n/a
65% Week 13
Due date: 31 May 2020 at 23:59
4000 words
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3 LO4 LO5

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a High distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a Distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range

Description

High distinction

85 - 100

 

Distinction

75 - 84

 

Credit

65 - 74

 

Pass

50 - 64

 

Fail

0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard.

 

For more information see sydney.edu.au/students/guide-to-grades.

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

Special consideration

If you experience short-term circumstances beyond your control, such as illness, injury or misadventure or if you have essential commitments which impact your preparation or performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 Introduction Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 02 Foundations: Ontology and Epistemology Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 03 Research Design (I): Questions, Hypotheses, Measurements Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 04 Research Design (II): Causal Inference Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 05 Research Design (III): Comparative Methods Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 06 Qualitative Methods (I): Data Collection Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 07 Qualitative Methods (II): Data Analysis Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 08 Quantitative Methods (I): Data Collection Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 09 Quantitative Methods (II): Data Analysis Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 10 Quantitative Methods (III): Data Analysis Lab Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 11 Quantitative Methods (IV): Data Analysis Lab Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 12 Research Proposal: Peer Feedback Workshop Seminar (2 hr)  
Week 13 New frontiers / Conclusions Seminar (2 hr)  

Attendance and class requirements

  • Attendance: According to Faculty Board Resolutions, students in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences are expected to attend 90% of their classes. If you attend less than 50% of classes, regardless of the reasons, you may be referred to the Examiner’s Board. The Examiner’s Board will decide whether you should pass or fail the unit of study if your attendance falls below this threshold.

  • Lecture recording: Most lectures (in recording-equipped venues) will be recorded and may be made available to students on the LMS. However, you should not rely on lecture recording to substitute your classroom learning experience.

  • Preparation: Students should commit to spend approximately three hours’ preparation time (reading, studying, homework, essays, etc.) for every hour of scheduled instruction.

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Required readings

The weekly readings will be made available through eReserve on Canvas.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University’s graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. Develop an understanding of a range of research approaches in the social sciences, including the ontological and epistemological foundations of different approaches.
  • LO2. Develop an understanding of the building blocks of research in the social sciences, including research questions, hypotheses, causal inference, and case selection.
  • LO3. Develop familiarity with commonly used methodological tools in empirical research including interviews, focus groups, surveys and introductory statistical methods.
  • LO4. Develop skills to critically engage with research in the social sciences, by understanding the processes by which research is conducted and the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches.
  • LO5. Formulate a research question and develop a research proposal to examine the question, including identification of a suitable research design and methodological approach.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities
GQ1 GQ2 GQ3 GQ4 GQ5 GQ6 GQ7 GQ8 GQ9
This is the first time this unit has been offered by this Lecturer.

Disclaimer

The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

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