Course code Soci2048

Credit points 4

Quantitative Research Methods

Total Hours in Course160

Number of hours for lectures32

Number of hours for seminars and practical classes32

Independent study hours96

Date of course confirmation09.11.2021

Responsible UnitInstitute of Social Sciences and Humanities

Course developer

author lect.

Lana Janmere

Mg. sc. soc.

Prior knowledge

Soci1005, Basics of Research

Course abstract

The aim of the study course is to provide theoretical knowledge about quantitative research methods in social research and to develop students' competence in the application of quantitative research methods.
The study course provides knowledge and skills in the implementation of quantitative research methods in social research required for further professional activity in public administration, research organizations and in any private sector organization, where the specifics of work are related to exploring of social problems, humans’ behaviour and opinions. Students both theoretically and practically learn the most important methods of quantitative research, gain an insight of quantitative social data collection, analysis and interpretation. The practical classes of the study course are geared to the implementation of specific research methods.

Learning outcomes and their assessment

Knowledge: understands the essence of quantitative research, knows quantitative data gathering methods and their application and knows the quantitative data processing process and the main statistical indicators in data analysis - individual works, exam.
Professional skills: ability to independently develop research tools for obtaining quantitative, to correctly apply the chosen research methods, ability to collect and analyze data obtained by quantitative research methods – individual works.
Soft skills: ability to plan and execute assigned tasks responsibly, ability to select the necessary sources of information, analyze them and use them in research – individual works.
Competence: ability to independently develop a quantitative research programme and choose an appropriate method of obtaining quantitative data, to develop a quantitative data acquisition tool in accordance with the proposed research hypothesis and to create a research database and select appropriate statistical indicators for data analysis purposes – individual works, exam.

Course Content(Calendar)

1. Definition of social research, quantitative approach in research and types of quantitative research (4 hours).
2. Planning of quantitative social research, development of research program and its’ elements (2 hours).
3. Measurement of social processes in quantitative research. Logical analysis of concepts: conceptualization and operationalization (1 hour).
4. Data acquisition method in quantitative research - survey (5 hours).
5. Data acquisition method in quantitative research - content analysis (2 hours).
6. Data acquisition method in quantitative research - observation (2 hours).
7. General population identification and sampling in research (1 hour).
8. Reliability of data in quantitative studies (1 hour).
9. Introduction of the most popular survey data processing softwares. Creation of database in IBM SPSS (2 hours).
10. Obtaining of primary data results (2 hours).
11. Database transformation opportunities for revealing variable relationships (2 hours).
12. Determining the statistical significance of the detected relationships in the data (2 hours).

List of practical classes (24 hours)
1. Specifics of the quantitative research approach, review of corresponding scientific publications (2 hours).
2. Preparation of the research program. Defining the aim, tasks and hypothesis. Choice of appropriate method (4 hours).
3. Conceptualization and operationalization. Determination of measurement levels for variables (4 hours).
4. Analysis of questionnaire question and answer scales. Development of a questionnaire (4 hours).
5. Use of content analysis in research, review of scientific publications (2 hours).
6. Application of observation method, review of scientific publications (4 hours).
7. Determining the general population in the study and choosing the appropriate sampling method (2 hours).
8. Creation of a database in quantitative studies and obtaining primary results (4 hours).
9. Activities with database transformation, data selection and recoding (3 hours).
10. Discovery of variable relationships / relationships in data, their evaluation (3 hours).

Requirements for awarding credit points

Students participate in lectures and practical classes or study content individually. To assess their knowledge, students take self-evaluation tests. 6 individual works must be developed. Written exam at the end of the course.

Description of the organization and tasks of students’ independent work

Students develop 6 individual works, demonstrating the selection and application quantitative methods, quantitative data processing and analysis.

Criteria for Evaluating Learning Outcomes

Exam. The evaluation of study results consists of: final written exam - 40%, six individual works - 60%.

Compulsory reading

1. Adams J., Raeside, R. Khan, H. T. A. Research Methods for Business and Social Science Students. Second edition. eBook. New Delhi: Sage Publications Ltd., 2014. 304 p. Tiešsaistē pieejams LLU Fundamentālās bibliotēkas tīklā, izmantojot EBSCO eBook Academic Collection: http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.llu.lv/login.aspx?direct=true&db=
2. e000xww&AN=784882&site=ehost-live&scope=site.
3. Babbie E., Halley F., Wagner W. E., Zaino J. (2013). Adventures in Social Research: Data Analysis Using IBM SPSS Statistics. Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage, 456 p.
4. Bourke J., Kirby A., Doran J. Survey & Questionnaire Design: Collecting Primary Data to Answer Research Questions: eBook. Ireland: NuBooks, 2016. 47 p. Tiešsaistē pieejams LLU Fundamentālās bibliotēkas tīklā, izmantojot EBSCO eBook Academic Collection: http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.llu.lv/login.aspx?direct=true&db=e000xww&AN=1460401&site=ehost-live&scope=site.
5. Bell J., Waters S. Doing Your Research Project: A Guide for First-Time Researchers: eBook. London: Open University Press, 2018. 344 p. Tiešsaistē pieejams LLU Fundamentālās bibliotēkas tīklā, izmantojot EBSCO eBook Academic Collection: https://web-a-ebscohost-com.ezproxy.llu.lv/ehost/ebookviewer/ebook/ZTAwMHh3d19fOTM3OTQ2X19BTg2?sid=9ee78256-b8da-48a1-a009-39ee8a75c712@sessionmgr4008&vid=3&format=EB&rid=1.
6. Bickman L, Debra J.R. The SAGE Handbook of Applied Social Research Methods. 2nd ed. Los Angeles: SAGE Publications, Inc. 2009, 662 p. Tiešsaistē pieejams LLU Fundamentālās bibliotēkas tīklā, izmantojot EBSCO eBook Academic Collection: https://web-a-ebscohost-com.ezproxy.llu.lv/ehost/ebookviewer/ebook/ZTAwMHh3d19fOTg2Nzk5X19BTg2?sid=fc23d9f1-e6cf-4f53-892c-b37b558584ca@sessionmgr4007&vid=20&format=EB&lpid=lp_652&rid=6.
7. Elst van H. (2019) Foundations of Descriptive and Inferential Statistics. Germany, p. 176. Tiešsaistē pieejams: https://arxiv.org/pdf/1302.2525.pdf.
8. Jansons V., Kozlovskis K. (2015). Mārketinga pētījumi: teorija un prakse SPSS 20 vidē. 1. daļa. Rīga, RTU izdevniecība, 400 lpp. Tiešsaistē pieejama: https://dom.lndb.lv/data/obj/841728.html.
9. Neuman W.L. Social Research Methods. Qualitative and Quantitative approaches: Seventh edition. Harlow, United Kingdom: Pearson Education Limited, 2014. 599 p. Tiešsaistē pieejams: http://letrunghieutvu.yolasite.com/resources/w-lawrence-neuman-social-research-methods_-qualitative-and-quantitative-approaches-pearson-education-limited-2013.pdf.
10. Robson C., McCartan K. Real World Research: A Resource for Users of Social Research Methods in Applied Settings. 4th edition. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley, 2016. 533 p.
11. Zinātniskā rakstīšana un pētījuma rezultātu izplatīšana. K. Mārtinsone, A. Pipere (red.). Rīga: RSU, 2018. 301 lpp.
12. Singh K. Quantitative Social Research Methods. Los Angeles: Sage Publications, 2007. 431 p.
13. Wagner C., Kawulich B., Garner M. Doing Social Research: A Global Context: eBook. Berkshire: McGrow Hill, 2012. 295 p. Pieejams LLU Fundamentālās bibliotēkas tīklā kā Google Scholar eBook: EBOOK: Doing Social Research: A Global Context - Claire Wagner, Barbara Kawulich, Mark Garner - Google Books.

Further reading

1. Arhipova I., Bāliņa S. (2006) Statistika ekonomikā un biznesā. Risinājumi ar SPSS un Microsoft Excel. Rīga: Datorzinību Centrs, 364 lpp.
2. Content Analysis: Four volume set. R. Franzosi (ed.). London (etc.): SAGE Publications, 2008. 696 p.
3. Krippendorff K. Content Analysis. An Introduction to Its Methodology. Fourth edition. SAGE Publications, 2018. 472 p.
4. Surveys from Start to Finish. M. Cole, L. Long (eds). Alexandria, Va: Association for Talent Development. 2016. Tiešsaistē pieejams LLU Fundamentālās bibliotēkas tīklā, izmantojot EBSCO eBook Academic Collection: http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.llu.lv/login.aspx?direct=true&db=e000xww&AN=1280702&site=ehost-live&scope=site.
5. Questionnaires: Four volume set. Bulmer, M. (ed.). London (etc.): SAGE Publications, 2004.
6. Ievads pētniecībā: stratēģijas, dizaini, metodes. Mārtinsone K. (red.). Rīga: Raka, 2011. 284 lpp.

Periodicals and other sources

1. European Societies. European Sociological Association. Pieejams: http://www.europeansociology.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=48&Itemid=29.
2. International Journal of Social Research Methodology. Pieejams: http://www.tandfonline.com/loi/tsrm20.

Notes

Mandatory study course in the ESAF academic bachelor's study program "Sociology of Organizations and Public Administration".