Università degli Studi di Urbino Carlo Bo / Portale Web di Ateneo


Methodology and techniques of social research

A.Y. Credits
2015/2016 10
Lecturer Email Office hours for students
Sabrina Moretti Tuesday and Wednesday morning by appointment

Assigned to the Degree Course

Date Time Classroom / Location

Learning Objectives

The course aims to provide the basic tools for the correct setting procedures of empirical research, and to analyze the main problems that accompany social surveys. The course also aims to develop critical skills that allow students to choose and evaluate the empirical data useful for designing and planning social interventions.


1. Introduction to the empirical research foundations

2. Quantitative research

  2.1 Hypotheses and empirical translation

  2.2. Quantitative research: scales and measures

  2.3. The questionnaire.

  2.4 The experiment

  2.5 The Analysis of secondary data

  2.6. Statistical analysis of data

3. Qualitative research

  3.1 The observation

  3.2 The qualitative interview

  3.3 The focus group

  3.4. Categorization processes in qualitative research

4. The scientific explanation in sociology

  4.1 The problem of complexity

  4.2 Models and theories: the simulation method

Learning Achievements (Dublin Descriptors)

1.Understanding of the main issues and problems relating to research methodology in social studies. Knowledge of the main tools to do scientific research in social sciences.

1.1. Students will attain this knowledge by participating in lectures and studying the scientific texts proposed by the teacher and discussed in the classroom.

2. Applying knowledge and understanding: students should consolidate skills and ability to define simple research projects and to deal with some typical problems.

2.1. Classroom discussions, tutorials, study of texts.

3. Capacity of judgment: students should achieve criticism about the methods used in the most common empirical investigations.

4. Communication skills: discussion coordinated by the teacher on the course topics.

4.1. Development of opportunities for dialogue in the classroom.

5. Learning skills: development of critical skills, logic and problem analysis.

5.1. Classroom discussions, tutorials, study of texts

Teaching Material

The teaching material prepared by the lecturer in addition to recommended textbooks (such as for instance slides, lecture notes, exercises, bibliography) and communications from the lecturer specific to the course can be found inside the Moodle platform › blended.uniurb.it

Supporting Activities

Practices coordinated by professor and research fellows.

Didactics, Attendance, Course Books and Assessment


Lectures and practical applications on empirical research.


Participation in at least three quarters of the lessons and practices.

Course books

1.     Bryman, A. Social Research Methods, Oxford University Press, 2008.

2. Gilbert, N. and ,Troitzsch, K., Simulation For The Social Scientist, Open University Press, 2005.


Oral examination.

Additional Information for Non-Attending Students


Study of texts


Study of texts

Course books

1.  Bryman, A. Social Research Methods, Oxford University Press, 2008.

2. Gilbert, N. and ,Troitzsch, K., Simulation For The Social Scientist, Open University Press, 2005.


Oral examination.

« back Last update: 21/12/2015


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