Faculty of Arts

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2014 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Arts
Organisational UnitSociology
OfferedClayton First semester 2014 (Day)
Coordinator(s)Dr Casimir MacGregor


Previously coded SYM4005


This unit provides students with a broad understanding of the theory and practice of sociological research, and allows students to develop advanced skills in the research design, data collection and data analysis techniques used in Sociology and cognate disciplines. A variety of social research methods will be explored. This unit also examines a range of theoretical and methodological issues involved in conducting sociological research and considers some of the critiques and limitations of social research techniques. The meaning and significance of both ethics and reflexivity in research practice are also explored. Students completing the unit will also develop important practical skills in conducting and analysing social research.


Upon successful completion of this unit students will have:

  1. an appreciation of the history, philosophy and practice of empirical research in Sociology;
  2. an understanding of a range of empirical methods and data analysis techniques used in social research;
  3. an awareness of some of the key issues, debates and controversies associated with conducting social research, and an appreciation of the complexity of conducting such research;
  4. an appreciation of the meaning and role of both ethics and reflexivity in social research;
  5. the ability to undertake practical empirical research.


Written assignments (4000 words): 40%
Research report (5000 words): 60%

Chief examiner(s)

Workload requirements

2 hours (1 x 2 hour seminar) per week


Enrolment in Bachelor of Arts (Honours)