Archive for May, 2016

For Friday, 5/27 (Final Exam)

May 14, 2016


  1. The final draft of the proposal is due by the end of the exam period, and attendance is mandatory. A few of you have spoken to me about scheduling issues, and I’ll deal with those individually; but generally speaking, it’s a bad idea to schedule something during an exam period.
  2. There are links to the budget and timeline spreadsheets in the Request for Proposals; links to your completed spreadsheets should be submitted along with the proposal.
  3. Prepare a presentation on your proposal (a satisfactory presentation will count for a score of 100% on one of your previous assignments — I’ll choose the assignment — so think of it as extra credit). I’m not asking for ‘I Have a Dream’-level speechifying; this should be a 5-10 minute presentation, with or without slides/visuals/charts (although the superior presentation would be with), addressing the following questions:
    1. Who are you and what’s the title of your proposal?
    2. What’s it about?
    3. What’s your research question and/or research hypothesis?
    4. What’s your research design? (Brief Overview)
    5. Why should this be funded? (IOW, What’s the contribution your study would make to the relevant scholarly literature on your topic?


  • Presentations (here’s some how-to advice)
  • After the proposals, we’ll devote most of the time to put the finishing touches on your proposals and accompanying materials, or to get my help.



For Friday, 5/13 (Week 14)

May 7, 2016

We’ve entered crunch time, and I know you all may be feeling the pressure. The fact is, this course requires a massive amount of work and hoop-jumping, so congratulations on making it this far. If you’ve attended class regularly, approached your work with seriousness, and treated your instructor and classmates with respect, you’re doing fine! Everybody has research design issues, but those can be worked out. I encourage you to email me and arrange a telephone call so that I can help with that.


  • HW due: Incorporating Literature
  • Schutt, Chapter 3
 (‘Research Ethics and Research Proposals’)


  • Review of HW
  • Course Evaluations
  • LAB: Ethics Consent Form
  • LAB: Budget & Timeline Spreadsheets


  • HW: Research Proposal (Final Draft)

Request for Proposals (AMSR)

May 2, 2016

The 3-0-3 Foundation announces a call for research proposals on any subject of sociological importance. Applied as well as basic research proposals are welcome, but all proposals should make a contribution to sociological knowledge. Although a complete literature review is not required, all research questions and hypotheses should be grounded in relevant theoretical and empirical work.


Schedule for Proposal Preparation

  • General topic area (“theme”) must be declared by each applicant three weeks after release of this announcement (the first day of class).
  • A focused subject within that topic must be declared by 6 weeks after the release of this announcement.
  • A draft of the proposal (outline here) must be submitted by approximately 13 weeks after the release of this announcement.
  • The final proposal must be submitted approximately 15 weeks after the release of this announcement. This proposal must incorporate the feedback you have received on your draft proposal.


Exact dates will be announced by your program manager.

Except in the case of documented medical or similar issues, under no circumstances will late submissions be accepted and program managers reserve the exclusive right to determine if lateness will be allowed and what penalty will be given. Please note that technical problems (such as faulty computers or lost files) are not acceptable reasons for lateness. Applicants are solely responsible for insuring that they have adequate backup procedures and time for use of campus computers. All work must be the applicant’s own. Lehman College rules on intellectual honesty must be followed.


Standards for Evaluation

Proposals on all sociological subjects are welcome and any social science research method may be used. Some characteristics of past strong proposals have been:

  • a clearly defined and important sociological topic
  • hypotheses or research questions that are grounded in the scholarly literature
  • a clear explanation of the proposed research, including as much detail as possible (see the link to the proposal outline above)
  • strong justification of the choices made especially in terms of method, measurement, and sampling
  • a realistic research plan given time and budget constraints
  • a thorough discussion of ethical issues
  • good writing in terms of both mechanics and organization.


Technical Guidelines

  • Proposals should be no longer than 2500 words, not including title page, abstract, table of contents, references, and any appendices, and must be double-spaced, stapled, and written in 12-point font. Proposals that fail to meet these requirements will be returned without comment to the author.
  • References and citations must be presented using American Sociological Association style.
  • Relevant materials vis-à-vis research ethics and Institutional Review Board guidelines must be submitted as an appendix to the proposal. (For example, these would usually include a proposed informed consent form).
  • Other appendices may include, but are not limited to, surveys, interview schedules, background statistics, and letters of support from collaborators.
  • Submissions must be made using the Blackboard system. Detailed instructions for submission will be available within Blackboard.


Your program manager will inform you of any other details.