GEOG 4002 - Honours Geog, Env & Population Research Methods

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2019

This course will provide students with a strong foundation in the conceptualisation and operationalisation of research, how to design a research project and 'hands-on' skills in the utilisation of different research methods. Students will be exposed to a wide range of research methods and will learn key principles of research design. Topics to be covered in detail include sampling, surveying, interviewing, case study analysis, focus groups, interviewing and analysing and presenting data. Intellectual and methodological debates will be discussed in order to assist students to develop informed opinions and a critical appreciation for other's research. The imperative for ethical research practice will be presented. Students will be equipped with the knowledge and ability to undertake methodologically sound, original research projects and will develop a set of transferable workplace skills.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code GEOG 4002
    Course Honours Geog, Env & Population Research Methods
    Coordinating Unit Geography, Environment and Population
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 6
    Contact 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Prerequisites Completed degree (72 units) with 24 units of Environmental Policy and Management major or completed Bachelor of Environmental Policy and Management degree
    Restrictions Available only to students admitted to relevant Honours program
    Course Description This course will provide students with a strong foundation in the conceptualisation and operationalisation of research, how to design a research project and 'hands-on' skills in the utilisation of different research methods. Students will be exposed to a wide range of research methods and will learn key principles of research design. Topics to be covered in detail include sampling, surveying, interviewing, case study analysis, focus groups, interviewing and analysing and presenting data. Intellectual and methodological debates will be discussed in order to assist students to develop informed opinions and a critical appreciation for other's research. The imperative for ethical research practice will be presented. Students will be equipped with the knowledge and ability to undertake methodologically sound, original research projects and will develop a set of transferable workplace skills.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Jennifer Bonham

    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    1 Identify different research methods and their theoretical underpinnings.
    2 Demonstrate an ability to identify, analyse and synthesise literature related to a research question.
    3 Critically analyse and demonstrate an ability to formulate viable research questions.
    4 Demonstrate an understanding and ability to undertake the range of tasks necessary to completing a research project.
    5 Identify and engage with the range of ethical issues involved in the conduct of a research project.
    6 Show an understanding of cross cultural contexts and the nuances/implications of cross cultural research.
    7 Work within a team, and use interpersonal skills to completed tasks.
    8 Demonstrate skills in using online data bases and software.
    9 Demonstrate high level written and verbal communication skills.
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    1,2,3,4,8
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    3,4
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    7,9
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    7,9
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • Able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    5,6
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    6,9
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    There are no required text books for this course. All required reading will be made available in MyUni.
    Recommended Resources
    Disciplines specific resources will be available in the weekly reading.

    Some general books and journals used in the course include:

    Books
    Bacchi, C., Goodwin, S. (2016). Poststructural policy analysis. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
    Bernard, HR (2011). Research methods in Anthropology: qualitative and quantitative approaches. California: AltaMira Press (BSL Online)
    Besen-Cassino, Y., Cassino, D. (2017). Social research methods by example: applications in the modern world. New York: Routledge (BSL Online)
    Bryman, A. (2016). Social research methods. (Fifth edition). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    de Vaus, D. (2014). Surveys in Social Research.(6th Edition) Allen & Unwin. Pp. 92-120.
    Denzin, N., Lincoln, Y. (eds.) (2011). The Sage handbook of qualitative research methods. (4th Edition). Thousand Oaks: Sage.
    Fincham, B., McGuinness, M., Murray, L. (eds.) (2010). Mobile methodologies. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan
    Flick, U. (2014). The Sage handbook of qualitative data analysis. Thousand Oaks: Sage
    Hart, C. (2001). Doing a literature search: a comprehensive guide for the social sciences. London: Sage
    Hay, I. (2016). Qualitative research methods in human geography. (4th Edition) Ontario: Oxford University Press.
    Walter, M. (2013) Social research methods. (3rd Edition). South Melbourne: Oxford University Press.
     
    Journals
    Action Research
    Qualitative Inquiry
    Qualitative Research (QR)
    Qualitative Research Journal
    Sociological Methods and Research
    Survey Research Methods
    Online Learning
    MyUni is used for communication and providing resources.
    Students will also complete Quizzes related to their reading.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Primary modes of learning in this course will be interactive face-to-face mini-lectures, facilitated discussion, reading, assignment preparation, peer engagement. Students are required to complete the required reading and any set tasks prior to each session.
    Workload

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    Full-time students should expect to spend about 44 hours per week on their studies during teaching periods. As a 6 unit course, students are expected to spend an average of 22 hours per week (including class-time) undertaking reading, session preparation and assignments for Honours Research Methods. Reading, preparation and assignments have been developed to assist students undertake their Honours projects.
    Learning Activities Summary
    Schedule
    Week 1 Course Overview: What is research?
    Week 2 Literature Reviews
    Week 3 Library Session: Database searches, Endnote, Secondary Data Sets and Repositories
    Week 4 Research Design
    Week 5 Theoretically informed research
    Week 6 Research Ethics and Engaging Cultures
    Week 7 Qualitative Methods: Engaging the research subject
    Week 8 Analysing interviews and observations from different theoretical positions
    Week 9 Qualitative Methods: Documents/Texts
    Week 10 Quantitative Methods: Creating and administering surveys
    Week 11 Analysing survey data
    Week 12 Communicating Research
    * The sequence of seminar topics is subject to change.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Task Type Weighting Learning Outcome
    Literature review Summative 30% 2,8,9
    Pre-seminar quizzes (20%) and seminar participation (10%) Formative and Summative 30% 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9
    Theoretical essay Summative  40% 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9
    Assessment Detail
    Literature Review: Students will be required to write a literature review on their proposed research topic.
    Pre-seminar quiz: Prior to selected seminars students will be required to complete a quiz related to the reading for the seminar topic.
    Theoretical essay: Students will be required to explain the theoretical approach that informs their proposed research

    Assignment briefs will be available at the beginning of semester.
    Submission

    No information currently available.

    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M11 (Honours Mark Scheme)
    GradeGrade reflects following criteria for allocation of gradeReported on Official Transcript
    Fail A mark between 1-49 F
    Third Class A mark between 50-59 3
    Second Class Div B A mark between 60-69 2B
    Second Class Div A A mark between 70-79 2A
    First Class A mark between 80-100 1
    Result Pending An interim result RP
    Continuing Continuing CN

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

    Changes to the course have been based on feedback from students in 2018.
    Reading: more discipline specific reading will be included
    Assessment: the journal has been replaced by a theoretical essay; quizzes will assist students in their weekly preparation.
  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

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