Choosing a research method can be bewildering. How can you be sure which methodology is appropriate, or whether your chosen combination of methods is consistent with the theoretical perspective you want to take? This book links methodology and theory with great clarity and precision, showing students and researchers how to navigate the maze of conflicting terminology. The major epistemological stances and theoretical perspectives that colour and shape current social research are detailed and the author reveals the philosophical origins of these schools of inquiry and shows how various disciplines contribute to the practice of social research as it is known today.
The concept of the case is a basic feature of social science research and yet many questions about how a case should be defined, selected, and judged are far from settled. The contributors to this volume probe the nature of the case and the ways in which different understandings of the concept affect the conduct and the results of research. The contributions demonstrate that the work of any given researcher is often characterised by some hybrid of these basic approaches, and it is important to understand that most research involves multiple definitions and uses of cases, as both specific empirical phenomena and as general theoretical categories.
This book explains and demonstrates to students when to use and how to apply the quantitative and qualitative techniques that they′ll need to do their own social research. Using actual examples from psychology, sociology, anthropology, health and education, the book provides readers with both a conceptual understanding of each technique as well as showing them how to use the technique.