Posts Tagged ‘AMSR’

For Friday, 10/30

October 23, 2015


  • HW due: Design Your Sampling Strategy
  • Schutt, Chapter 10 (‘Qualitative Methods’)


  • Lab: Exploring Sampling


  • HW: Qualitative Data Analysis

For Friday, 10/23 (Week 8)

October 9, 2015


  • HW due: Administer Your Survey
  • Review the chapters on survey research and sampling in Schutt (2015).
  • This is also a good time to further familiarize yourself with the literature on your topic, and to bring your research question into sharper focus; in regards to the latter, I strongly suggest that you review Topics 4 and 7 in Patten (2014).
  • Patten (2014), Topics 12-18


  • TBA


  • HW: TBA

For Friday, 10/16

October 3, 2015

At the beginning of the semester, I told you all that if you find it impossible to put your phone away during class time, then this would not be the class for you. I understand that there has been some frustration with the technical requirements of this class, what with all the blogging and Blackboarding and Google-Driving. But a lot of people have been having trouble following directions that are written out in detail and subsequently reviewed in class. When I stand in front of the class, I see a lot of phones out or even being furtively tapped upon, despite the fact that I’ve told you to put them away during class time. Given that researchers have found that the mere presence of a phone on the table or within view can significantly alter the quality of conversation, consider the possibility that at least some of your confusion might be cleared up by minimising the distraction of devices. As always, you can email me regarding other sources of confusion.


  • HW due: Write a Survey (there is a link to it in the Bb announcement)
  • Schutt, Chapter 5 (‘Sampling’)
  • Patten (2014), Topics 27-31

The lab this week was marred by some kind of Google-server breakdown. I will of course accept late submissions, so long as you began them in class. (Reminder: it’s common courtesy to inform me if you need to leave early.)


  1. Lab: Pre-testing Your Survey


  • HW: Administer Your Survey

For Friday, 10/9

October 1, 2015

Note: You need only concern yourself with the Before section of this agenda right now. The fact that I set some links up beforehand for what happens during or after class, or that I add or delete items from those sections, or change the planned sequence, should ordinarily have very little effect on your preparation for class.


  • HW due: Survey Research Reverse Outline. The article you are to reverse-outline is Norton & Ariely (2011; see below). It’s short and sweet.
  • I have revised the settings on the Bibliography Quiz (just to be clear: this is the one on ASA Style) so that you may make unlimited attempts to improve your grade.
  • Schutt, Chapter 8 (‘Survey Research’)
  • Patten (2014), Topics 4-7
  • Michael I. Norton and Dan Ariely, ‘Building a Better America – One Wealth Quintile at a Time’, Perspectives on Psychological Science 6(1):9–12 (2011)


  1. Lab: Survey Rewrite


  • HW: Write a Survey

For Friday, 10/2

September 18, 2015

Here’s what my graph from the Manifest Content Analysis lab looked like:

image (1)

One big question for me is whether I my search in SocIndex and Social Sciences Full Text were as similar as they should have been to the JSTOR search (I belatedly realised that SSFT has an option to restrict searches to English; when I selected that option, as well as ‘TX All Fields’ for my keyword, I got zero results in 2002…). Anyway, on with the shew:


  • HW: Take this opportunity to catch up if you haven’t turned everything in yet.
  • Schutt Chapter 14 [Chambliss and Schutt, Chapter 4]
  • Patten (2014), Topics 19-21
  • Michael I. Norton and Dan Ariely, ‘Building a Better America–One Wealth Quintile at a Time’ Perspectives on Psychological Science 6(1):9-12 (2011)


  1. Quiz: ASA Style
  2. Presentations, cont’d: Model Proposals #3, 6, and 7
  3. BREAK (we might break later instead–before the lab, for example)
  4. Measurement of Race/Building a Better America
  5. Validity
  6. Reliability
  7. Percents Handout
  8. Lab: Impact of Question Wording (approx. 2:30pm)


  • HW: TBA Survey Research Reverse Proposal Outline

On Choosing a Research Topic

September 10, 2015

When it comes to advice on choosing research topics, opinions are like kittens—people give ’em away. (I never tire of quoting that line from Modest Mouse.) Here are a couple of the best:

  • I never met Charles Tilly; by all accounts, he was an extremely generous mentor as well as a world-class scholar. Here is one byproduct of that generosity. It’s a PowerPoint presentation on choosing a dissertation topic, but it applies to the choice of research topics above as well as below that level.
  • Here’s another link to Professor Elin Waring’s advice on the subject.
  • More to come…

HW: Qualitative Interview (AMSR)

April 27, 2015

In this assignment you will conduct an interview with an individual in an area related to a theme (ideally, your research proposal topic).

The subjects must be adults and must not be individuals over whom you have any actual or perceived power, such as clients at a job or field placement site. You will (a) prepare a number (at least 5) of open ended questions designed to elicit in-depth responses, (b) carry out the interview and (c) write up the results (a transcript plus paragraph(s) describing–but not naming–the person you interviewed, where the interview took place, and very briefly summarizing the interview. Please consider carefully whom you will interview if the interview is on a potentially upsetting topic. You must promise confidentiality to your respondent, so if you interview a relative or friend you may be put in an awkward situation in the future. Voluntary, informed consent must be obtained for the interview, although in order to protect the respondant’s privacy you should not ask for signed consent.

The consent form should be along these lines:

My name is _________. I would like to interview you about _________ for a sociology class on research methods that I am taking. The interview is totally voluntary, and you can stop at any time or not answer any particular question. Your name will not be revealed to anyone and only my instructor will read the interview transcript. The interview should take about thirty minutes. If you have any questions you can contact my instructor at Lehman College at 919-967-8969. I would appreciate it very much if you would allow me to do the interview.

In the interview you should concentrate on a small part of the subject’s life experience, preferably something that has a beginning, a middle and an end. Some examples would be:

  • Health. Someone who has had an illness, a care taker, someone in a health profession.
  • Religion. A memorable event in a person’s religious experience. For example, converting to a new religion. leaving a religion, participation in a ritual such as baptism, bat mitzvah or confirmation, or ordination as a member of the clergy.
  • Work and Families. How someone balances work and family demands, a first job, how a person got any particular job and what it was like to learn it, having a child.
  • School. Math experiences, dropping out of school, deciding to go to college, becoming a teacher, finding day care.
  • Immigration. The experience of immigrating, early experiences in the U.S., deciding to come to the U.S., becoming a citizen.
  • Age and Aging. Becoming a retired person, experiences with the healthcare system, relationships with children/family as someone ages; moving to a nursing home; becoming a caregiver for an aged parent.

In addition to the interview, you should observe the person’s normal surroundings and/or the surroundings in the place where you do the interview and his or her appearance. Hand in: A description of the surroundings and the person, a brief summary of the interview, and the interview transcript.