A Practical Introduction
- Bruce Curtis - University of Auckland, New Zealand
- Cate Curtis - University of Waikato, New Zealand
Research Methods (General) | Social Research Methods | Sociological Research Methods
The text provides a mixed methods approach that challenges historical divisions between quantitative and qualitative research. It adopts a multidisciplinary approach to social science research, drawing from areas such as sociology, social psychology and social anthropology.
Explicitly addressing the concerns of emergent researchers it provides both a 'how to' account of social research and an understanding of the main factors that contextualize research by discussing 'why do' social scientists work this way.
Throughout the twelve comprehensive chapters procedural (how to) accounts and contextual (why do) issues are usefully applied to major themes and substantive questions.
These key themes include:
(1) Research design
(2) The practices of research and emergent researchers: Beyond ontology, epistemology and methodology
(3) The impact of technology on research
(4) Putting the research approach in context.
A superb teaching text this book will be relished by lecturers seeking an authoritative introduction to social research and by students who want an accessible, enriching text to guide and inspire them.
Finally a Social Research textbook that provides a clear and comprehensive introduction to the field, one that considers the origins of approaches and addresses epistemological and ethical contexts, and offers thoughtful discussion of and practical guidance on both quantitative and qualitative methods. This book will prove to be an invaluable resource for students and teachers and deserves to become the benchmark for texts in the field
Professor of Sociology, University of Portsmouth
This book does an important job in providing an excellent methods textbook which is organized around Charles Ragin's distinction between case and variable centred methods and draws explicitly on the social realist frame of reference in presenting arguments and instruction. Those of us who teach undergraduates on research methods courses now have available a textbook which in an accessible way takes students through the repertoire of social research approaches drawing on the most innovative ways of thinking about what social research is trying to achieve
Professor David Byrne
School of Applied Social Sciences, Durham University
This is an ambitious book that delivers the goods. It provides a comprehensive overview of a wide range of the main approaches to social science research. It avoids the simplistic quantitative/qualitative divide and provides a useful way of thinking about the various research approaches. It achieves that difficult balance between a practical, how-to book and one which provides a deeper understanding of what the research approaches are doing. The breadth provided in this book will enable researchers to wisely chose between research approaches according to the nature of the problem and the understanding they seek to achieve
Professor David de Vaus
Executive Dean, Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, University of Queensland
This is a very interesting book on research methods, particularly for teachers. The main elements of the social research process are clearly presented but in an original way: every chapter is about a different research method or approach but all of them have the same structure. This structure includes the more usual sections on how-to-do but also other sections as “Some issues in research” and “Putting the approach in context” that I find especially valuable. The eleven research approaches selected, explained and discussed form a very relevant methodological overview and the classification of this methods based on the concepts “case-centric vs. variable-centric” gives a new perspective about them.
A clear and practical introductory text book on social research methods, good use of tables which summarize the key points. however, no websites for students and lecturers, no end of the chapter exercises or highlights.
I prefer a book that only addressing qualitative methods. This one is too comprehensive and as such contains overlap with what my colleagues are teaching.
Good overview. Helpful overall and easy to read. The topics are fairly comprehensive and the book is well designed and well written.
Good book, provides insight into social research
Useful insights on areas such as epistemology and ethics. Also the chapter on secondary research which is often given less of a porofile in research texts.
This book is full of useful ideas about how to conduct social research.
The section on secondary research and literature reviews is especially enlightening.
I have recommended this to our skills workshops' students because it really does adopt a practical take on social research - it's as useful for serious undergraduates wanting to excel on their final project as well as some of our PG students who are prepping dissertations.