CP0243 - Developing Research Methods

SchoolCardiff School of Planning and Geography
Department CodeCPLAN0
Module CodeCP0243
External Subject CodeX210
Number of Credits20
LevelL5
Language of DeliveryEnglish
Module Leader Dr Scott Orford
SemesterDouble Semester
Academic Year2013/4

Outline Description of Module

This module builds and strengthens the insights and skills on research methodology gained from the CP0136 Introducing Research Methods in Year One.

This module develops these skills by broadening the range of qualitative and quantitative research methods students are able to critically assess and use in their research projects. The module begins by emphasising the key relationship between philosophy and method. In the autumn semester students will then be introduced to advanced qualitative methods, including ethnography, journals, and film. In the second semester students will become adept at using and critiquing statistical data and undertaking statistical model building

There are three routes through the module, depending on the degree programme of the student. These routes differ in the final half of the second semester and in the final assessment only.

On completion of the module a student should be able to

Students should be able to connect theoretical materials with particular case studiesthrough a critical review of current geographical literature in a written essay

Students should be able to demonstrate an understanding of qualitative approaches to research in the social sciences through project work.

Students should be able to explore and explain casual relationships in socio-economic processes through the use of statistical analysis in project work.

 

In addition, a student on the City and Regional Planning route will be able to:

Students should be able to demonstrate a practical understanding of Geo-visualization techniques of spatial and planning data through project work

 

In addition, a student on the Geography and Planning route will be able to:

Students should be able to provide a practical understanding of the research process and its constituent tasks by formulating a dissertation research proposal

 

In addition, a student on the Human Geography route will be able to:

Students should be able to provide a practical understanding of the research process and its constituent tasks by formulating a dissertation research proposal

How the module will be delivered

Lectures – to provide formal understanding of the scientific principles that govern the activities of social research and provide examples, case studies and different methodologies and techniques

Field Work – to provide hands-on experience of data collection for project work

Computer Lab work – to provide experience and skills for data synthesis, management and analysis for project work

Seminars – to allow students to discuss and debate concepts covered in lectures

Presentations – to provide students the opportunity to discuss more formally their research ideas

Skills that will be practised and developed

Ability to think critically and formulate research ideas and operationalise these into aims, objectives and questions

Ability to develop a methodology for primary data collection and critically discriminate between different methods and technologies

Statistical analysis techniques using packages such as SPSS / ARCGIS / Quantum GIS

Data collection skills including note talking, using GPS, audio and video capture and film editing skills

Ability to design and present effectively and cohesively a research project (from the research question to analysis and findings)

How the module will be assessed

The assessment methods for the module should be detailed here (both formative and summative), including any distinctive features (e.g. major project work). You should explain how the modes of assessment will enable all students to demonstrate achievement of the module learning outcomes, indicating which learning outcomes are addressed in each assessment task.  Any academic or competence standards which may limit the availability of adjustments or alternative assessments for disabled students should be clearly stated.

 

City and Regional Planning Route

Type of assessment

 

%

Contribution

Title

Duration
(if applicable)

Approx. date of Assessment

Group Project

25%

Doing Qualitative Research

 

Mid Nov

Group Project

25%

Film Assessment (6 min)

 

Mid Jan

Project

25%

StatisticalModel Building(1, 000 word plus statistical output)

 

Early April

Project

25%

Geo-Visualization (1, 200 word)

 

Mid  May

 

Geography and Planning Route

Type of assessment

 

%

Contribution

Title

Duration
(if applicable)

Approx. date of Assessment

Group Project

25%

Doing Qualitative Research

 

Mid Nov

Group Project

25%

Film Assessment (6 min)

 

Mid Jan

Project

25%

StatisticalModel Building(1, 000 word plus statistical output)

 

Early April

Project

25%

Research Dissertation Proposal (1, 200 word)

 

Mid  May

 

Human Geography Route

Type of assessment

 

%

Contribution

Title

Duration
(if applicable)

Approx. date of Assessment

Group Project

25%

Doing Qualitative Research

 

Mid Nov

Group Project

25%

Film Assessment (6 min)

 

Mid Jan

Project

25%

StatisticalModel Building(1, 000 word plus statistical output)

 

Early April

Project

25%

Research Dissertation Proposal (1, 200 word)

 

Mid  May

 

The potential for reassessment in this module

Students will have the chance to be re-assessed the pieces of failed assessment in the August re-sit period. The re-sit work will be similar to the original set.

Assessment Breakdown

Type % Title Duration(hrs) Period Week
Presentation 25
Developing Research Methods - Doing Qualitative Research
N/A 1 N/A
Presentation 25
Developing Research Methods - Film Assessment (6 Min)
N/A 1 N/A
Written Assessment 25
Developing Research Methods - Statistical Model Building
N/A 1 N/A
Written Assessment 25
Developing Research Methods - Geo-visualization
N/A 1 N/A

Syllabus content

City and Regional Planning route

 

Developing Research Methods: Philosophies of Knowledge

From Philosophies to Methods: Question setting and methodological choice

Undertaking a literature Review

Positionality & Method

Ethnography , Auto Ethnography and Reflexive Journals

Placed Methods

Mobile Methods

Interpreting signs, symbols and other cultural texts

Film & Method – Doing

Film & Method – Editing and Presenting

Statistics and model building – Introduction and concepts

Statistics and model building (T-tests and F-tests)

Statistics and model building (correlation and regression)

Statistics and model building (regression diagnostics)

How to understand a planning problem, analyse it and present a visual output to the stakeholders.

Problem identification, solutions and alternatives

Geo-visualisation and cartographic methods

Visual presentation of visual contents

Literal presentation of planning contents for decision-support

Verbal presentation of planning proposals

 

Geography and Planning route

 

Developing Research Methods: Philosophies of Knowledge

From Philosophies to Methods: Question setting and methodological choice

Undertaking a literature Review

Positionality & Method

Ethnography , Auto Ethnography and Reflexive Journals

Placed Methods

Mobile Methods

Interpreting signs, symbols and other cultural texts

Film & Method – Doing

Film & Method – Editing and Presenting

Statistics and model building – Introduction and concepts

Statistics and model building (T-tests and F-tests)

Statistics and model building (correlation and regression)

Statistics and model building (regression diagnostics)

What is a research dissertation?

Brainstorming research ideas and research questions

Writing a research proposal

Presentations of research ideas

 

 

Human Geography Route

 

Developing Research Methods: Philosophies of Knowledge

From Philosophies to Methods: Question setting and methodological choice

Undertaking a literature Review

Positionality & Method

Ethnography , Auto Ethnography and Reflexive Journals

Placed Methods

Mobile Methods

Interpreting signs, symbols and other cultural texts

Film & Method – Doing

Film & Method – Editing and Presenting

Statistics and model building – Introduction and concepts

Statistics and model building (T-tests and F-tests)

Statistics and model building (correlation and regression)

Statistics and model building (regression diagnostics)

What is a research dissertation?

Brainstorming research ideas and research questions

Writing a research proposal

Presentations of research ideas

Essential Reading and Resource List

Babbie, E. (1992) The Practice of Social Research,Belmont,CA: Wadsworth.

 

Bryman, A. (2001) Social Research Methods,Oxford University Press.

 

Clifford, N. and Valentine, G. (eds.)(2003) Key Methods in Geography, London: Sage.

 

Denscombe, M. (2003) The good research guide for small-scale social research projects. Open University Press, Buckingham., 2nd Edition

 

Denzin,N.and Lincoln,Y.(eds.) (2000) The Handbook of Qualitative Research, London: Sage.

 

de Vaus D.A. (1991) Surveys in Social Research, London: Allen and Unwin.

 

Flowerdew,R. and Martin,D. (eds.) (2005) Methods in Human Geography: AGuide for Students Doing

Research Projects,2nd Edition, Harlow: Addison Wesley Longman

 

Hart, C. (1998) Doing a Literature Review,London: Sage.

 

May, T. (1998) Social Research:Issues, Methods and Process, 2nd edition,OpenUniversity Press.

 

Rogerson, P.A. (2010) Statistical Methods for Geography: A Student’s Guide, 3rd edition, Sage Publications

 

Shurmer-Smith, P. (ed.)(2002) Doing Cultural Geography,London: Sage.

 

Field, Andy (2009) Discovering Statistics using SPSS, Sage, Third Edition

 

T. Parsons & P G Knight (2005) How to do your dissertation in Geography and related disciplines, London: Chapman & Hall 2nd Edition

 

Walliman, N. (2001) Your Research Project: AStep by Step Guide for The First Time Researcher, London: Sage

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