Social Research Methods

Subject 207-512 (2009)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2009. Search for this in the current handbook

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2009:

For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 36 hours of lectures and workshops (3 hours per week)
Total Time Commitment: Not available
Prerequisites: Eligibility for honours or postgraduate degree
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements: It is University policy to take all steps to minimise the impact of disability upon
academic study, and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's
participation in the University's programs. This course requires all students to
enrol in subjects where they must actively and safely contribute to laboratory
activities and field trips. Students who feel their disability will impact on
meeting this requirement are encouraged to discuss this matter with the Subject
Coordinator and Disability Liaison Unit.
Subject Overview: Understanding of social process and action is critical to effective land management and social research skills are therefore valued by resource management agencies. The subject aims to equip students with knowledge and skills to design social research which can be used to improve management of natural resources, agricultural and food systems. The research process is considered step by step including scoping research issues, the evolution of research questions, and selection of appropriate methods. A number of research strategies are considered in more detail including survey research, case studies and action research. Social research ethics, quality in social research, the relationship between theory and methods, and advances in social research methods are examined.

Assessment: A literature review of 3000 words (40%) – by week 8, a research proposal of 3000 words (40%) – by week 10 and a 15 minute seminar presentation (20%) – week 12 .
Prescribed Texts: None
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills: A profound respect for truth, intellectual and professional integrity, and the
ethics of scholarship
Capacity for independent critical thought, rational inquiry and self-directed
learning and research
An ability to derive, interpret and analyse social, technical or economic
information from primary and other sources
Awareness of and ability to utilise appropriate communication technology and methods
for the storage, management and analysis of data
Capacity for creativity and innovation, through the application of skills and knowledge
Ability to integrate information across a relevant discipline to solve problems in
applied situations
Highly developed computer - based skills to allow for effective on-line learning and
Highly developed written communication skills to allow informed dialogue with
individuals and groups from industry, government and the community
Highly developed oral communication skills to allow informed dialogue and liaison
with individuals and groups from industry, government and the community.
Appreciation of social and cultural diversity from a regional to a global context
Ability to participate effectively as a member of a team
Ability to plan work, use time effectively and manage small projects
Related Course(s): Master of Agricultural Science
Master of Animal Science
Master of Forest Ecosystem Science
Postgraduate Diploma in Agricultural Science
Postgraduate Diploma in Animal Science and Management

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