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Ch 20: Research Methods in Sociology

About This Chapter

Watch video lessons to review research methods in sociology. Study experimental design, ethnography, validity and reliability. You can also take a look at ethical issues facing sociological researchers.

Research Methods in Sociology - Chapter Summary

In this chapter, our experienced instructors discuss all aspects of sociological research methods. You'll be reminded of what sociological research is, and the positivist, interpretive and critical approaches. You'll also look at different types of research designs including true experimental design.

The chapter discusses ethnography and methods of studying cultural phenomena, in addition to quantitative and qualitative research and how to interpret correlational data. As you progress through the chapter, you'll refresh your memory about validity and reliability and how they are measured. After completing this chapter, you should be able to:

  • Explain positivist, interpretive and critical approaches to sociological research
  • Describe types of research design including true experimental design
  • Define ethnography
  • Differentiate quantitative vs. qualitative research
  • Explain how to interpret correlations
  • Discuss validity and reliability
  • Recognize ethical concerns in sociological research

Our approach involves brief, engaging video lessons that streamline the learning process. We also give you self-assessment quizzes and lesson transcripts to deepen your comprehension. We highlight important concepts by giving you key terms that are frequently linked to text lessons. And if you want to go over a portion of a video lesson without re-watching the whole thing, you can use our video tags that take you directly to the part you want to see.

8 Lessons in Chapter 20: Research Methods in Sociology
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
What is Sociological Research? - Positivist, Interpretive and Critical Approaches

1. What is Sociological Research? - Positivist, Interpretive and Critical Approaches

Human society is a complex network, and there are many ways to study it. In this lesson, we'll look at three approaches to sociology: positivist, interpretive and critical.

Types of Research Design

2. Types of Research Design

There are questions to be answered in all areas of psychology. How are these questions answered by professionals in the field? This lesson covers several different options researchers can use to approach such questions.

True Experimental Design

3. True Experimental Design

Experiments are the classic way to conduct research in almost any field of study. But do you know how true experiments really work? This lesson explains the details of experimental design, such as different types of samples, control groups and independent vs. dependent variables.

What Is Ethnography? - Studying Cultural Phenomena

4. What Is Ethnography? - Studying Cultural Phenomena

Researchers use various methods to answer questions. Some questions cannot be answered through quantitative measures; they are best addressed through qualitative research methods, such as ethnography. This lesson will discuss the defining qualities, methods, and uses of ethnography.

Quantitative vs. Qualitative Research

5. Quantitative vs. Qualitative Research

In this lesson, we identify the differences between quantitative and qualitative research methods in the social sciences. We also discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each approach.

How to Interpret Correlations in Research Results

6. How to Interpret Correlations in Research Results

Perhaps the most common statistic you'll see from psychology is a correlation. Do you know how to correctly interpret correlations when you see them? This lesson covers everything you need to know.

Validity and Reliability: How to Assess the Quality of a Research Study

7. Validity and Reliability: How to Assess the Quality of a Research Study

Many psychologists and teachers complete research studies. How can you tell if a study was done well? This lesson will cover many criteria for a good quality study, including types of reliability and validity.

Ethical Concerns in Sociological Research

8. Ethical Concerns in Sociological Research

Research that seeks to understand the behaviors and practices within human society is called sociological research. This lesson will explore potential ethical concerns and the standards for sociological research. We will finish with a quiz to test your knowledge.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
Not Taken
Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
Not Taken

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