Tag Archives: research methods

Methods in Context – Possible Method and Topic Combinations

Methods in Context- Here you need to be able to assess the strengths and limitations of using any method to research any topic within education. The different methods you need to be able to consider include – Secondary documents Official … Continue reading

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Qualitative Data – Strengths and Limitations

Qualitative data includes…. Open question questionnaires Unstructured interviews Participant observation Public and private documents such as newspapers and letters. Theoretical strengths Better validity than for quantitative data More insight (Verstehen) More in-depth data More respondent-led, avoids the imposition problem. Good … Continue reading

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Assess the Usefulness of Positivist Approaches to Social Research (30)

Just a few thoughts on how you might go about answering this question… if it comes up on paper 3 of the A level sociology exam  Paragraph one – outline the key ideas of Positivism Positivists believe that sociology can … Continue reading

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Assess the View that Theoretical Factors are the most Important Factor Influencing Choice of Research Method (30)

Just a few thoughts on how you might answer this in the exam.  Introduction – A variety of factors influence a Sociologist’s decision as to what research method they use: the nature of topic, theoretical, practical and ethical factors. Theoretical … Continue reading

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AS and First Year A Level Sociology – Whole Course Overview

An overview of the entire course for AS and first year A level sociology covering the following ‘modules’: Education with applied research methods (‘methods in context‘) Research methods Families and Households. The overview below is taken directly from the AQA’s … Continue reading

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Research Methods – Key Terms for A Level Sociology

Definitions of core concepts covered as part of the research methods component of AS and A Level Sociology. Organised in alphabetical order – so effectively this is a research methods A-Z. If this is too much for you, then have … Continue reading

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Non-Participant Observation

Non-Participant Observation is where researchers take a ‘fly on the wall approach’ and observes individuals and groups without getting involved in the life of the group. You would have come across this type of method in the form of the … Continue reading

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Participant Observation in Social Research

Participant Observation is where the researcher joins in with the group being studied and observes their behaviour. This post covers the theoretical, practical and ethical strengths and limitations of using overt and covert participant observation in social research. Participant observation … Continue reading

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Semi-Structured Interviews to Research Education

Semi-Structured interviews are the most common primary qualitative research methods used in education. There are many studies which employ them. Here I focus on just one, which is adapted from ‘Sociology Since 2000’. Class, gender, (hetero) sexuality, and schooling: working-class … Continue reading

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Learning to Labour by Paul Willis – Summary and Evaluation of Research Methods

Participant Observation in the Context of Education Given the practical and ethical problems of conducting participant observation in a school setting, there are only a handful of such studies which have been carried out in the UK, and these are … Continue reading

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