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Research Methodology 2 2017/2018

  • 6 ECTS
  • Taught in Portuguese
  • Continuous Assessment

Objectives

With this course, students will be able to:
• Recognize the contents and styles of format in psychological research reports;
• Recognize the main objective of the literature review and master literature research skills;
• Reflect about the multiplicity of aims that guide psychological research;
• Acknowledge, identify and conciliate quantitative and qualitative reserach methods in psychology;
• Identify and select research designs;
• Understand the importance of the quality of sampling procedures;
• Learn about data collection, organization and analysis;
• Consider ethical concerns in psychological research;
• Develop critical thinking skills about the quality of the methods used in psychological research;
• Develop autonomy to plan a research in psychology.

Recommended Prerequisites

Students should have working knowledge of the fundaments of psychological research, as presented in the Research Methods I course.

Teaching Metodology

The theoretical-practical classes will aim to combine expository and active, participated, and collaborative methods. The expository methods will be supported on Power-Point slides, on the exploration of research papers and other forms of research reports, on the exploration of data sets, and the visualization of videos. Active methods will be based on practical activities, namely on the reflection and discussion of the quality and applicability of qualitative and quantitative psychological research methods, as well as the development and presentation of two research projects. These practical activities will aim to actively solve research problems in psychology, and the critical evaluation of the used methods. Students will be invited to present and critically discuss research methods in this course, developing individual and group-based assignments.

Body of Work

1. The psychological research report: contents and style.
2. Identifying research questions in psychology. The central role of the literature review.
3. Definition of the research's aims.
4. Quantitative methods in psychological research
4.1 Fundaments and the researchers' assumptions
4.2 Research designs: experimental, correlational, and longitudinal
4.3 Sampling procedures
4.4 Data collection: measures and procedures
4.5 Ethical concerns in data collection and handling
5. Qualitative methods in psychological research
5.1 Fundaments and the researcher's assumptions
5.2 Data collection in qualitative research
5.3 Data organization
5.4 Data analysis in qualitative research
6. Mixed methods in psychological research

Recommended Bibliography

American Psychological Association (2009). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Almeida, L. S., & Freire, T. (2010). Metodologia da investigação em psicologia e educação (5ª edição). Braga: Psiquilíbrios.
Bryman, A. (2008). Social research methods. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Coutinho, C. P. (2011). Metodologia de investigação em ciências sociais e humanas: Teoria e prática. Coimbra: Livraria Almedina.
Creswell, J. W. (2009). Research design: Qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods approaches (3rd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Forrester, M. (Ed.) (2010). Doing qualitative research: A pratical guide. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Howittt, D., & Cramer, D. (2011). Introduction to research methods in psychology (3rd. ed.). Harlow, England: Pearson Education Limited.

Complementary Bibliography

Marôco, J. (2014). Análise estatística com o SPSS Statistics (6ª ed.). Pêro Pinheiro: Report Number.
Martins, C. (2011). Manual de análise de dados quantitativos com recurso ao IBM SPSS: Saber decidir, fazer, interpretar e redigir. Braga: Psiquilíbrios.
Sternberg, R. J., & Strenberg, K. (2010). The psychologist’s companion: A guide to writing scientific papers for students and researchers (5th ed.). NY: Cambridge University Press.
Tabachnick, B. G., & Fidell, L. S. (2007). Using multivariate statistics (5th ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon.
Torres, L. L., & Palhares, J. A. (2014). Metodologia de investigação em ciências sociais da educação. Vila Nova de Famalicão: Edições Húmus
Wilkinson, D. & Birmingham, P. (2003). Using research instruments: A guide for researchers. London: Routledge.

Weekly Planning

Week 1: Presentation of the course, teaching methods and evaluation, and expected outcomes; Research methods in psychology: basic concepts.
Week 2: The psychological research report: contents and style.
Week 3: The psychological research report: contents and style. Research questions in psychological research. The central role of the literature review.
Week 4: The psychological research report: contents and style. Research questions in psychological research. The central role of the literature review. Mini-quiz 1 (individual assignment).
Week 5: Definition of the research's aims. Quantitative methods in psychological research: Fundaments and the researchers' assumptions; Research designs.
Week 6: Quantitative methods in psychological research: Research designs; Sampling.
Week 7: Quantitative methods in psychological research: Data collection - measures and procedures.Ethical concerns in data collection and handling.
Week 8: Mini-quiz 2 (individual assignment). Collaborative work for the development of research project I, with tutorial supervision.
Week 9: Group presentations of research projects I.
Week 10: Qualitative methods in psychological research: Fundaments and the researcher's assumptions; Data collection.
Week 11: Qualitative methods in psychological research: Data organization; Data analysis.
Week 12: Qualitative methods in psychological research: Data organization; Data analysis. Mixed methods in psychological research.
Week 13: Mixed methods in psychological research. Mini-quiz 3 (individual assignment).
Week 14: Collaborative work for the development of research project II, with tutorial supervision.
Week 15: Group presentations of research projects II.

Demonstration of the syllabus coherence with the curricular unit's objectives

In order to provide students with the opportunity for the development of competencies to select and use different psychological research methods, the programmatic contents include a diversity of quantitative, qualitative, and mixed-methods. In order to allow students to relate different methods to different research questions and know how to select these methods in accordance with the questions, the programmatic contents include the analysis and critical reflection about the psychological research report (aims, contents and style). Finally, in order to develop research planning skills, as well as of interpretation, critical analysis and/or the description of a methods section, the programmatic contents include the analysis of the style and content of reports, as well as of different options in goals, sampling, variables, data collection procedures, and data analysis.

Demonstration of the teaching methodologies coherence with the curricular unit's objectives

The expository methods in this course allow the transmission and analysis of new contents concerning quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods in psychological research. These methodologies support the acquisition of basic knowledge in this domain, by the students. Active participation methods will be accomplished through individual exercises of critical evaluation of research reports and the methods used in these reports, as well as by the development and presentation in group of two research projects. The individual and group assignments will contribute for the acquisition of critical thinking skills about the use of different research methods for different aims and research questions. Combining these different methods will therefore allow students to meet the goals of this course.

relevant generic skillimproved?assessed?
Achieving practical application of theoretical knowledgeYesYes
Adapting to new situationsYesYes
Analytical and synthetic skillsYesYes
Balanced decision makingYesYes
Bargaining abilityYes 
Commitment to effectivenessYesYes
Commitment to qualityYesYes
CreativityYesYes
Cultural awareness  
Ethical and responsible behaviourYesYes
Event organization, planning and managementYesYes
Foreign language proficiencyYes 
Information and learning managementYesYes
Initiative and entrepreneurship capabilityYesYes
IT and technology proficiencyYesYes
LeadershipYesYes
Problem Analysis and AssessmentYesYes
Problem-solvingYesYes
Relating to othersYesYes
Research skillsYesYes
Self-assessmentYesYes
TeamworkYesYes
Understanding multiculturalism and valuing diversityYes 
Working in international context  
Written and verbal communications skillsYesYes
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