Posts tagged INST381

This is a great, simple example of how to do some rudimentary content analysis. I’ll have to use it next time I teach research methods.

From shortformblog:

Does Time water down its story coverage in the U.S.? That’s a question which has been floating around the interwebs since yesterday, when the internet hivemind figured out that Time ran a soft feature in this week’s U.S. edition, while the rest of the world got a much more important story about Egypt. (Fellow Tumblr Jessica Binsch did a Storify breakdown of the online reaction.) Most of us can agree Time probably blew this cover choice. However, we’d like to offer another argument here: That the magazine is merely playing to different markets, rather than blatantly dumbing down its U.S. coverage. Our latest Tumbl-zine (it’s been a while, we know) breaks down the past year in Time covers, by region and type of content. Here’s what we found.

From nationaljournal:

Development’s Impact
Developing countries are home to 80 percent of the world’s population  but are responsible for only half of the world’s carbon dioxide  emissions. As their standard of living and energy use rise, and as their  populations swell, developing countries will have a greater impact on  the planet. More maps and charts »

Oh, and I plan to use this today in INST 381 as yet another example of how data can be presented in an informative, yet elegant way.

From nationaljournal:

Development’s Impact

Developing countries are home to 80 percent of the world’s population but are responsible for only half of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions. As their standard of living and energy use rise, and as their populations swell, developing countries will have a greater impact on the planet. More maps and charts »

Oh, and I plan to use this today in INST 381 as yet another example of how data can be presented in an informative, yet elegant way.

How to give a stunning visual presentation. From Scott McCloud, author of Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art (one of the most influential books on visual design theory).

It introduces a number of questions about how to rethink the presentation of information as a “message” that must be conveyed through a “medium”—and the near-infite possibilities of what that could mean.

Hans Rosling is a genius when it comes to beautiful visual design of data. I use this to help my research methods students think more creatively about the uses of data & statistics. It’s also a nice little clip to show in an introductory international relations course to talk about globalization.

Beyond a nice critical analysis of contemporary e-journalism, this also offers a great way to frame content analysis of online journalism (via copyeditor, dailyhuff, i.imgur.com).
I now plan to use this in my discussion of content analysis in INST381 (Research Methods for International Studies) in a few weeks. So, um, thanks!

Beyond a nice critical analysis of contemporary e-journalism, this also offers a great way to frame content analysis of online journalism (via copyeditordailyhuffi.imgur.com).

I now plan to use this in my discussion of content analysis in INST381 (Research Methods for International Studies) in a few weeks. So, um, thanks!

The 2010 Census Questionnaire | Population Reference Bureau

I often use the concept of “race” to illustrate just how difficult it is to define and then operationalize (transform into measurable variables) concepts we may be interested in studying. After all, how can we make empirically falsifiable claims (hypotheses) if we are unsure about the validity of our underlying concepts/variables? A very important point to make early on in any methods class.

During the last week of the semester, my INST 381 (Research Methods) students also discuss the problem of subjectivity in science. This is where we go back to the beginning, and look at the limitations of science (it’s our “philosophy of science" moment). 

One of my favorite assignments is this 2008 article from Wired magazine, “The Truth About Autism: Scientists Reconsider What They Think They Know.” The article offers a profile of two people with autism who are directly challenging scientific consensus on autism by posing a provocative question: How can non-autistics study/understand people w/ autism?

The video above (titled “In My Language”) is a sort of autism manifesto. 

[BTW: If you’re looking for a short but thick book for use in an undergraduate research methods course, I always recommend The Elements of Social Scientific Thinking. The final chapter is entirely devoted to philosophy of science issues. And the book is short enough, that it can be paired w/ other material & flexible enough to support various kinds of assignments.] 

The Stanford Prison Experiment: A Simulation Study of the Psychology of Imprisonment

During the last week of the semester, my INST 381 (Research Methods) students discuss research ethics. We did a bit of that earlier, when they learned about filling out IRB paperwork for a survey protocol assignment. But this week we will discuss Philip Zimbardo’s controversial Stanford Prison Experiment

There’s an irony here. The experiment was—by today’s standards, certainly—extremely unethical. Yet, Zimbardo (and others) continue to draw lessons from it. In fact, he’s made a career out of this experiment.

One activity I’ve done in the past is to have students deconstruct one “reality television” competition, like Survivor or Big Brother, treating it like an experimental design. It’s a good way to test not only students’ understandings of research ethics, but also research design (and whether such shows actually allow for a substantial test of some hypotheses).

International Studies Thesis Proposal Guidelines

My INST 381 (Research Methods for International Studies) have been working on a brief (7-8 page) thesis proposal throughout the semester—while simultaneously learning several qualitative & quantitative research methods. These are the guidelines I set out for them. The hope is that they will use their proposals to guide their study abroad experience, develop their projects over the next semester/year, and come back their senior year ready w/ a senior thesis project well underway.

I created this presentation to demonstrate why regression analysis is a useful tool for answering a social science research question (in this case, what explains differences in voter turnout in 51 countries in Europe and the Americas). I hope it’s useful to someone out there.

FYI: It’s not entirely designed as a stand-alone presentation (for example, it doesn’t explain how to take a downloaded spreadsheet & load it into STATA—something I would do in a lab setting). It also looks much better in PowerPoint. You can also view a version on Slideshare.