PS102Lecture3

PS102Lecture3 - PS102 PS102 IntroductiontoPoliticalInquiry...

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PS 102 PS 102 Introduction to Political Inquiry Introduction to Political Inquiry Lecture 3 Lecture 3
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What Do You What Do You Want to Study? Want to Study? First step is a research question Why do some people vote? Why do some military crises escalate to war? Why to some democratic governments collapse? NOT just a topic Voting, military conflict, democratic government What is the difference? Research topic defines VARIATION on a DEPENDENT  VARIABLE that will be EXPLAINED.
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Common Problems with Common Problems with Research Questions Research Questions Focus on discrete facts Why did World War I happen? Reframe discrete event as part of broader category Focus on future events Will the US reform its healthcare system? No empirical referent for study Reframe future event as part of a class of events with past cases Focus on normative questions Is Democracy the best form of government? Cannot be answered empirically Reframe “best” into a descriptive term Do elected governments enact policies that are closer to the preferences of their  citizens than non-elected governments?
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Specifying an Explanation Specifying an Explanation A VARIABLE is a concept with variation.  A DEPENDENT variable is thought to depend upon or be caused by  variation in another variable.
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This note was uploaded on 10/21/2011 for the course POL SCI 102 taught by Professor Gelpi during the Spring '11 term at Duke.

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PS102Lecture3 - PS102 PS102 IntroductiontoPoliticalInquiry...

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