Sociology of Family

PART ONE: DEVELOPING A RESEARCH QUESTION, VARIABLES, AND
MEASUREMENT PARAMATERS

 

Format: A hard copy of this paper should be brought to class. It should be three to four
pages in length (double-spaced and in Times New Roman 12-point font). These are
formal papers and should be treated as such: correct spelling, sentence structure,
grammar etc…

Directions:
First, pic a topic connected to your sociological interests. For example, if you are
interested in Sociology of Family, you may want to study single mothers, gay marriage,
singlehood, polygamy, polyamory or any topic related to family and / or relationships.
Identify this basic topic of interest, and tell me why you are interested in it.

Second, think about what specific aspects of your topic you would want to study. Here,
you are identifying:
• the units of analysis (whether individuals, groups or organizations)
• the specific concepts and corresponding variables/indicators of interest to you
• what kinds of relationships among variables you would want to explore (i.e., state
the hypotheses). When creating hypotheses, remember to think in terms of
predictive, testable statements that link two or more variables together where one
variable causes another

Third, you need to discuss your variables:
• identify which variables in your hypotheses are independent variables and
dependent variables
• Conceptualize your variables by giving them definitions (or “indicators”). Remember,
that identifying the indicators of a variable can be difficult. Think about your variable
in terms of identifying its dimensions or boundaries: what it “is” and what it “isn’t”
• Operationalize your variables by identifying the best way to measure them.
Remember, operationalization can be very straightforward (such as gender being
measured by whether a person identifies as male or female) or very fluid (such as
the different aspects that mean a person is “gay”). How you measure a variable
should be guided by theory—why are the dimensions and distinctions you made
important for your research?

Fourth, you need to defend the importance of your proposed research. Why study this
topic? Why is it important? If your research has practical social benefit to society,
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explain how. If you are studying a topic purely to gain knowledge (i.e. it has no practical
benefit beyond pure knowledge), explain why it is important to know the information this
research will produce.
PART TWO: ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY

Due Date: October 21 at 9:30am (NOTE: As per the “Missed/Late Assignment Policy”
(page 3), I DO NOT accept EMAILED or LATE Papers)

Format: A hard copy of  this paper should be brought to class. It should be four to five
pages in length (double-spaced and in Times New Roman 12-point font). These are
formal papers and should be treated as such: correct spelling, sentence structure,
grammar etc…

Directions:
Using the research topic you decided on in Part 1, you will now examine what others have
found out about your topic You will write an annotated bibliography consisting of five (5)
peer reviewed empirical journal articles related to your topic. For each of the articles
you will include the citation (following ASA format) and then list six key components:

1. Question: Tell me what the main research questions and hypotheses are. Also, you
will explore what theory guided those hypotheses

2. Design: Tell me what the research design is and the type of data used by the
researchers to empirically examine the topic (Do they conduct interviews, an
experiment, a survey, field research, archival research, etc.? Specify what type of
experiment, what type of survey, field research, etc. What are the units of analysis?
Are the data cross-sectional or longitudinal? If longitudinal, what type of longitudinal
design – trend study, panel study, or cohort study?)

3. Concepts and Variables: Tell me what the key concepts/variables being studied or
manipulated are. How are these concepts/variables defined and operationalized?

4. Sampling: Tell me how the data were selected (Was a probability or nonprobability
sample taken? What type of probability or nonprobability sample was selected? Do
they rely on secondary data, and if so, what kind — a national survey, government
documents, etc.? Do they conduct interviews? Again, what kind — face-to-face,
phone, etc.?

5. Analysis: Tell me how the data were analyzed, including any quantitative and
qualitative methods used. (Are the findings primarily qualitative, as in historical
narrative or in-depth interviews, or are they quantitative? And if quantitative, what
kind of technique was used? Do they report percentages, means and standard
deviations, t-tests, chi-squares, regression results? Is their analysis univariate or
bivariate or multivariate, or some combination thereof?)

6. Findings/Conclusions: Tell me what the most important conclusions and/or findings
are. Also tell me what contribution (i.e. what was new and different) this research
made to the topic, according to the authors.
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NOTE: Guidelines for choosing articles:
• Only use peer-reviewed scholarly journals. NO popular magazines, newspaper
articles, or articles created for Internet sites (such as blogs etc…).
• Generally, select recent articles (i.e., 2000 or later). Only use older articles if it is a
classic (i.e. everyone cites it in relation to your topic) and/or you find it crucial to your
topic’s exploration.
• Choose only research articles (qualitative or quantitative research). Do not choose
articles that are theoretical works, editorials, or book reviews (i.e. articles that have
not conducted a study). If you are unsure about an article, I will be glad to take a
look at it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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PART THREE: SPECIFYING AND DEFENDING A RESEARCH DESIGN

Format: A hard copy of this paper should be brought to class. It should be at least five
pages in length (double-spaced and in Times New Roman 12-point font). These are
formal papers and should be treated as such: correct spelling, sentence structure,
grammar etc…

Directions:
Using Part One and the accompanying peer reviews, you will now revise your original
ideas and flesh them out in more detail. You will also be adding a new element: your
specific, detailed research design for how you are going to gather and analyze your
data. In this assignment you will:

1. Tell me about the conceptualization and operationalization of your variables with
greater detail. Address issues of face validity and content validity when
describing your concepts and related measurement strategies. Also, specify the
level of variable measurement (nominal, ordinal, or interval/ratio) for each of your
main variables.

2. Tell me about your methodology in detail. There are three important parts of your
methodology you need to discuss:

a. Research Design: Is it an experiment (classical lab experiment, a natural or
field experiment, Solomon design, quasi design, etc.), survey (a mailed
questionnaire, face-to-face, phone or electronic survey, etc.), field research
(case study, participant observation, etc.), or unobtrusive research (content
analysis, comparative/historical, etc.)?
b. Sampling procedure. Are you going to use probability sampling (systematic
selection, stratified, cluster, etc.) or nonprobability sampling (snowball,
purposive, etc.).
c. Type of Observations: Will your research involve longitudinal or cross-
sectional observations?

Note: For a qualitative study, discuss the following issues:
– Clearly define the theoretical constructs you are using.
– Explain the main concept you are investigating
– Explain other concepts you will be examining (note the concepts potential
frequencies, magnitudes, structures, processes, causes, and consequences)
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– Explain the approach. Will you be using grounded theory? If so, how so? If
not, what other type(s) of qualitative analysis will you conduct (e.g.
conversation analysis)?

Note: For quantitative research, discuss the following issues:
– Clearly state your hypotheses.
– Identify and operationalize your variables. Explain the levels of measurement
of the variables.
– Discuss the causal relationships between the variables (i.e. identify the
independent variables and the dependent variable

3. Now, defend your methodology. First, tell me the advantages your approach
offers over other research strategies/methods. Second, tell me what the
disadvantages/limitations are of your methodology.

4. Lastly, describe the process of carrying out your research design and sampling
strategy For example, if conducting a survey, tell me the steps involved:
Identifying a population; developing and pretesting a questionnaire; selecting a
sample from that population; dealing with nonrespondents; etc. Or if conducting
field research, discuss how you would go about gaining access to the setting and
gathering the data. If conducting a lab experiment, how would you recruit your
experimental subjects, and how exactly would the experiment be carried out? If
conducting a panel study, how will you deal with attrition?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FINAL: RESEARCH PROPOSAL

Due Date: December 8 at 11:59pm via iCollege (NOTE: As per the “Missed/Late
Assignment Policy” (page 3), I DO NOT accept EMAILED or LATE Papers)

Format: A hard copy of  this paper should be brought to class. It should be 10 – 20
pages in length (double-spaced and in Times New Roman 12-point font). These are
formal papers and should be treated as such: correct spelling, sentence structure,
grammar etc…

Directions:
For this assignment, you will take Parts 1, 2 and 3 and integrate them into a cohesive
research proposal. Also, you will add a few other new, but important elements. Your
research proposal should include:

1. Introductory Statement (use aspects of Part 1 and/or aspect of Part 3 here)

2. Literature Review (rework Part 2 – the annotated bibliography – into an
organized and easily read section)

3. Methodological Plan (use aspects of Part 3 here)

4. *NEW* Ethics Statement. You need to address any ethical issues that might be
involved in your research (voluntary participation, no harm to subjects, and
deception). If you do not think ethical concerns are relevant in your study, explain
why in detail.

5. Limitations (use aspects of Part 3 here).

6. Conclusion

7. References

I am adding part one so you can get an idea of what my topic is and I also added in the instructions for part 1, 2, and 3 just for reference I only need the final proposal part done.For more information on Sociology of Family check on this:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sociology_of_the_family

 

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