1 CRIM7204/7205 Research and Evaluation Methods and Lab Dr. Amy Farrell School of Criminology and Criminal Justice Northeastern University Class Schedule: Monday 5:30 –8:00 Lab Schedule: Monday 8:00 –9:00 Class Room: 117 Snell Library (Lab 422 Snell) Office Hours: Monday 3:30-4:30, Thursday 2:30-3:30 Office: 400D Churchill Hall Office Telephone: 617-373-7439 Email: [email protected]Goals and purpose of the course This course introduces graduate students to the methods of doing research in the social sciences, with a focus on research in the field of criminology. Research methods provide models for the collection, organization and analysis of data to help make decisions that will help solve social problems and contribute to our knowledge base about critical issues facing the criminal justice system. By the end of the course, the student will understand the fundamentals of social science research, know how to design research and conduct ethical research studies, write a research proposal and present research results in a professional manner. To be able to fulfill these goals, students will learn how to formulate research questions and hypotheses, choose research methods and designs to most appropriately answer these questions, understand the relationship between theory and research and explain the meaning of and differences between inductive and deductive approaches to research, discuss sampling techniques, collect data, and design research surveys. Students will also be able to explain potential problems and common errors associated with research design, the analysis of data, and the interpretation of results and develop tools to avoid these errors. Course format This course builds upon a basic working knowledge of social science research methods to strengthen your ability to digest and evaluate criminal justice research and lay a solid foundation for your own research inquires. Class meetings will generally start with a brief lecture that presents and summarizes a methodological issue. The lecture will be followed by a discussion of research articles assigned for the week. The lab time will be devoted to small group projects involving the collection and use of primary data to demonstrate various methodological approaches to answering questions. Additional lab time will be devoted to cooperative work on the final group project. There is a basic textbook for the course that will be used as a reference document for understanding the basics of methodological issues. In addition to the textbook, research articles are assigned each week that relate to the topic being discussed in class. Students will be expected to provide a critical assessment of each of the assigned research articles.
2 Course textbook Hagan, Frank (2012). Essentials of Research Methods in Criminal Justice and Criminology, 3rdEdition. New York: Prentice Hall.