PIA2012 - Social Research Methods

Offering Academic Unit
Department of Public and International Affairs
Credit Units
Course Duration
One Semester
Equivalent Course(s)
Course Offering Term*:
Semester A 2024/25

* The offering term is subject to change without prior notice
Course Aims

This course will introduce students to basic principles of research design and causal inference in social science, as well as to a range of qualitative and quantitative methods commonly used in social science research. The course starts with an exploration of general issues in social inquiry and research design, and it then transitions to discussing more specific areas and selected research methods that constitute the toolkit of social scientists. For each of them, we focus on underlying principles, practical applications, strengths and weaknesses, and ethical challenges. Tutorials focus more closely on quantitative data analysis and introduce students to basic principles and practices in inferential statistics. They provide necessary foundations to students who wish to take more advanced courses, such as PIA3607. Assessment is based on class participation, quizzes and written exams. There will be a variety of activities to help students better understand the research process and how to apply research methods to address consequential social research questions.

Assessment (Indicative only, please check the detailed course information)

Continuous Assessment: 70%
Examination: 30%
Examination Duration: 2.5 hours
If a course has both coursework and examination components, students are required to pass BOTH the coursework assessment AND the examination before they can be awarded an overall passing grade of the course.
Detailed Course Information