McGee, Tara R. (2007) Sociological investigations. In Germov, J. & Poole, M. (Eds.) Public Sociology : An Introduction to Australian Society. Allen & Unwin, Crows Nest, N.S.W.
Students of sociology often mistakenly think that studying sociology is about learning a bunch of dusty old theories and memorising a stack of ‘social facts’. While this knowledge is a foundational requirement of sociology, what sociologists really do is study the social world. When sociologists study the social world in a systematic way, it is called social research. Social research draws both on various theoretical frameworks and also on the studies that other sociologists have conducted. It is the fun part of sociology, and while it may be a number of years until you conduct your own research projects, throughout your studies you will need to be able to locate, understand, and critically evaluate the research work of sociologists. The aim of this chapter is provide you with an overview of the social research process. We will consider the impact of the researcher and the place of theory and previous research findings in the research process. This will be followed by a quick overview of research design and how sociologists go about finding the people that they want to research. Finally we will look at the standard structure of journal articles and some of the techniques of analysis that sociologists employ.
Impact and interest:
Citation counts are sourced monthly from and citation databases.
These databases contain citations from different subsets of available publications and different time periods and thus the citation count from each is usually different. Some works are not in either database and no count is displayed. Scopus includes citations from articles published in 1996 onwards, and Web of Science® generally from 1980 onwards.
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|Item Type:||Book Chapter|
|Additional Information:||For more information about this book chapter please refer to the publisher's website|
|Keywords:||Atheoretical research, Case study, Categorical data, Deductive research, Inductive research, Interviews (structured and unstructured), Mean (arithmetic ~), Paradigm, Participant observation, Population, Questionnaires, Research design, Sample (probability and non, probability), Theory (Social ~), Variable|
|Subjects:||Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > SOCIOLOGY (160800) > Sociological Methodology and Research Methods (160807)|
|Divisions:||Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Law|
|Copyright Owner:||Copyright 2007 Allen & Unwin|
|Deposited On:||20 Apr 2007|
|Last Modified:||13 Apr 2009 23:27|
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