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Matt A. Barreto ::

CCAS 202: Qualitative Research Methods

Spring 2022, Thursday, 10:00am - 12:50pm

Course Description:

This course will review, dissect, discuss and debate different research methods that are used in social science scholarship and assess the advantages and disadvantages of different approaches and methodologies. In particular, we will assess the pros and cons of different research approaches when studying Chicanas/Chicanos (and other populations) in the U.S. Students will be expected to write a research paper, and give a presentation, using one of the methodologies we read during the quarter, and to defend that approach. As a scholar, you are expected to develop a theory and make an argument about social processes, and to defend that theory and argument with evidence. Evidence can take any shape, size or form, but it must be collected and assessed in a methodical and defensible manner, so that you can objectively defend your argument against critics from all sides. The goal of this class is to make all of our scholarship stronger, so that we can persuasively advance our theories in the most appropriate and rigorous way according to our respective subfields across the socials sciences. Each week, students are expected to complete all of the assigned readings and to bring one example of a research project you could implement using that week’s methodology.

Note on technology in the classroom: If you are using your laptop to take notes, and organize the readings, please make sure that you are ONLY using your laptop for that purpose. This is not a time for messaging apps, email, or other browsing. Please be serious and focused about your use of your laptop during class, to contribute to a collaborative and respectful environment. Phones must be put away during class, except for emergencies. Readings are to be done BEFORE class starts.

Books / Articles:

Each week there will be required readings from one or more of these books as well as research articles from scholarly jouranls. Readings should be done for the day they are assigned. For many weeks, the required readings are posted online, or distributed as a handout. The complete, week-by-week reading list is also posted on the course website.

  • Zepeda-Millán, Chris. 2017. Latino Mass Mobilization: Immigration, Racialization, and Activism. Cambridge University Press.

  • Joseph Maxwell. 2012. Qualitative Research Design: An Interactive Approach (Applied Social Research Methods) 3rd Edition. SAGE.

  • Perri 6 and Christine Bellamy. 2011. Principles of Methodology: Research Design in Social Science. SAGE. [Download Part 1 for Week 2]

Week-by-week syllabus with reading assignments: Download Syllabus

Note on final presentations: Throughout the course of your career you will be called upon to get in front of a room of your peers and present your research. The more practice you get the better. You should plan on roughly a 15-minute presentation of research slides using PowerPoint or any similar presentation software. Take the presentation seriously, start working on it early in the quarter and continue to update it as your project advances. Slides should consist of framing the issue, why is this interesting/important research, existing literature, your specific research question, your argument or point of view, the data and methods you are using, summary of findings, interpretation of results, conclusion, and next steps. Use color, graphics, pictures, maps, flow charts, animation, video, and more to make your presentation dynamic and engaging. I will gladly provide feedback and suggestions on your presentation throughout the quarter. But the most important part is not the literature review, the most important part is YOUR argument, your theory, your view on social relationships and processes.