Critical Analytical Skills

Subject MULT20003 (2012)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2012.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 2 (Undergraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2012:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable


Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: Thirty contact hours per week. 1 x 1.5 hour lecture and 1 x 1.5 hour tutorial per week for 10 weeks. The lecture and tutorial programs are staggerred and cover the 12 weeks of semester.
Total Time Commitment: 8.5
Prerequisites: Completion of 25 points of first year Criminology, Sociology or Politics and International Studies or 25 points of approved Interdisciplinary Foundation (IDF) subjects.
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: Politics & International Studies or Criminology or Sociology at Level 1
Non Allowed Subjects: 191-004 Social Science Research Methods
Core Participation Requirements: For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:


Dr Aaron Martin


Dr. Aaron Martin:
Subject Overview:

This subject introduces students to the fundamental analytic skills that are used in social science research. It provides an introduction to the theoretical and epistemological foundations of social science research, familiarises students with the different methods of inquiry in the social sciences and provides an overview of key historical and contemporary debates and trends. Different theoretical approaches and their associated methods of inquiry will be introduced through practical examples in order to show their strengths and limitations.


Upon successful completion of this subject students are expected to:

  • Have a general understanding of the theoretical and epistemological foundations of social science research
  • Have a general understanding of the historical and contemporary debates about social science research
  • Be aware of the range of different methods of inquiry in the social sciences and how these relate to different theoretical perspectives in the social sciences
  • Have the critical and analytical skills to read research papers in the social sciences and identify the theoretical approaches and methods of inquiry that are used
  • Have a critical understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of different theoretical perspectives in the social sciences, and different methods of research (both qualitative and quantitative).

A short research design of 1000 words (20%) due early-semester; In class practical tasks equivalent to 1000 words (30%) due during the semester; A research project assignment of 2000 words (50%) due during the examination period.

This subject has a minimum Hurdle Requirement of 75% Tutorial attendance. Students who fail to meet this hurdle requirement will be deemed ineligible to submit the final piece of assessment or sit the final examination. Regular participation in tutorials is required.

Assessment submitted late without an approved extension will be penalised at 10% per working day. In-class tasks missed without approval will not be marked. All pieces of written work must be submitted to pass this subject.

Prescribed Texts:

Required readings will be available electronically via the subject's LMS site prior to the commencement of semester.

Breadth Options:

This subject potentially can be taken as a breadth subject component for the following courses:

You should visit learn more about breadth subjects and read the breadth requirements for your degree, and should discuss your choice with your student adviser, before deciding on your subjects.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • be able to apply critical research skills and methods to a field of inquiry.
  • have considerable capacity for independent critical thought and self-directed learning.
  • have an ability to plan work and to use time effectively.
Notes: This is a compulsory subject in the Politics and International Studies major, Criminology major and Sociology major. This subject is available only to students who are completing one of these majors.
Related Majors/Minors/Specialisations: Anthropology and Social Theory
Criminology Major
Political Science Major
Politics and International Studies
Politics and International Studies
Politics and International Studies
Socio-legal Studies Major
Sociology Major

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