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Flashcards in 3) Social Science Research Methods Deck (20):
1

Describe the key features of quantitative research:

Numerical data
Hypothesis and deduction = conclusions
Relationships between variables (causal)

2

What designs can be used for quantitative research?

RCTs, cohort, case control, cross sectional surveys
Secondary analysis of statistics and surveys

3

What are some applications of questionnaires?

Measure of exposure to risk factors e.g. diet on cancer
Knowledge and attitudes e.g. sexual health
Satisfaction with health services

4

What two things should good questionnaires be?

Valid and reliable

5

What is the difference between published and unpublished questionnaires?

Publishes tested for validity and reliability
Unpublished, niche areas and need piloting

6

What questions should be asked in a questionnaire?

Many closed with may be an open ended question at the end with a text box. Requires different analysis and may not be completed

7

What are quantitative methods good at?

Describing, measuring and finding relationships between variables
Allowing comparisons

8

What are the disadvantages of quantitative methods?

Force people into inappropriate categories
Don't allow people to express in the way they want
May not access all information

9

Describe the key features of qualitative research:

Make sense of phenomena in terms of meaning people bring to them e.g. why don't people give up smoking
Understand people's perspective
Insights in behaviour

10

What methods can be used in qualitative research?

Ethnography
Interviews
Focus groups
Documentary and media analysis

11

What is ethnography and why is it useful?

Studying human behaviour in natural context
Gain access to behaviour that individuals many give biased accounts of or not remember

12

How can be interviews be used for qualitative research?

Give participants' perspective on agenda
Detailed, focussed accounts on issue of interest

13

How can focus groups be used for qualitative research?

Accessing group based, collective understanding of an issue
Encourages people to participate

14

What is documentary and media analysis and why is it useful?

Analysis of independent evidence e.g. medical records and diaries
Analysis of TV, newspaper and media stories
Gives historical context and useful for subjects that are difficult to investigate

15

What are qualitative methods good at?

Understanding perspective
Accessing info not revealed by quantitative
Explaining relationships between variables

16

What are the disadvantages of qualitative methods?

Labour intensive
Finding consistent relationships
Generalisability - dangerous to infer propensity of views from small sample size

17

How is qualitative research appraised?

Carried out robustly
Rigour, credibility, relevance, transparency
Audits

18

What factors should be consisted when choosing an approach for research?

Topic under investigation and research question
Research team's preferences
Time, money and funders available

19

What are the disadvantages of focus groups?

Topics may be too sensitive
Deviant views inhibited
Don't want hierarchy in groups
Difficult to arrange

20

How is qualitative data analysed?

Close inspection of data looking for themes