• Class Number 2010
  • Term Code 2930
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Topic On-campus
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dr Sverre Molland
    • Dr Sverre Molland
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 25/02/2019
  • Class End Date 31/05/2019
  • Census Date 31/03/2019
  • Last Date to Enrol 04/03/2019
SELT Survey Results

This course provides a guide to the processes and methods of social research, with emphasis on qualitative rather than quantitative research, and on the kinds of research questions and environments that researchers are liable to encounter in development work. The research process can be considered to be divided into four phases: Formulating Research Questions (and dealing with research requests), Gathering Data, Analysing Data, and Writing Up. This course focuses especially on the Gathering Data phase. We will explore, and pay critical attention to, certain 'rapid assessment' methods and tools that have become standard in many kinds of development work in the last two to three decades. These tools are used to map or document the varied relationships between members of local communities and their environmental, social and cultural resources. We will explore the concept of 'participation' that underlies those tools. We will consider differences and similarities between these participatory development tools and standard anthropological methods. Throughout, we will keep in mind questions of research ethics, kinds of knowledge and observation, and the politics, conflicts and dynamics of research with and within local communities.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Upon Successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Explore and compare the formulation of research questions in the social sciences and in development;
  2. Gain experience of a range of basic (largely qualitative) data-collection methods used in the social sciences and in development work and awareness of practical and critical issues in the use of these methods;
  3. Explore a range of ethical issues relevant to social research

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written feedback via turnitin on written assignments comprising in-text annotations, a marking rubric and a general overall comment.
  • all students can at anytime approach the lecturer requesting feedback on their tutorial participation performance.

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction to social analysis and community politics participation
2 Political dimensions of research: gatekeepers and orchestrated change participation
3 Gathering Data Rapidly: PRA/RRA participation
4 Gathering data non-rapidly: ethnographic research and participant observations participation
5 Research Ethics participation
6 Focus groups and interviews participation
7 Social Surveys & Questionnaires participation
8 Social Surveys & Questionnaires (cont). participation
9 Case Study: Randomised Control Trials participation
10 Case Study: Population Census, Household Surveys and UNDP’s Multidimensional Poverty Index participation
11 Case study: Social Mapping - beyond sites and territory (development, labour migrants and social research) participation
12 Data Analysis and Fieldnotes participation

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Tutorial & Forum Participation 10 % 03/06/2019 03/06/2019 1, 2, 3
Minor Essay 40 % 15/04/2019 29/04/2019 1, 2
Major Essay 50 % 03/06/2019 17/06/2019 1, 2, 3

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website. Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Due Date: 03/06/2019
Return of Assessment: 03/06/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3

Tutorial & Forum Participation

Tutorials are held each week, except for two weeks when we will run the class in an online discussion forum workshop-style format. The tutorial is meant to be an informal, cordial, yet informed collective and individual learning process regarding different topics discussed throughout the semester. All students must do the required readings for each week. Students are expected to actively participate by asking questions, make comments and engage in conversation. Hence, simply attending tutorials does not equate participation. The quality of contributions is far more important than quantity. Students are expected to demonstrate a critical engagement with the readings as well as the broader topics discussed in the tutorial. Repeated comments that are off-topic and do not demonstrate an engagement with the unit material (although unlikely to be penalised) will not be rewarded with any marks. Students are also expected to contribute in a positive manner. Although well-informed debate and discussion is encouraged, this must at all times be taking place in a collegial and respectful manner. Please note that up to two absences from tutes (or forums) will not impede on your participation grade. Absences beyond that may be excused, subject to the provision of a medical certificate, or equivalent, which must be emailed to the course convenor before class. 

Assessment Task 2

Value: 40 %
Due Date: 15/04/2019
Return of Assessment: 29/04/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2

Minor Essay

Purpose of assignment:

To demonstrate students’ engagement with the literature on research methodology; to show their understanding of methods and their applications, and their ability to make critical assessment of these; and to show that they can communicate clearly in writing in an academic format.

Word length: 2500 words. Note: word length is exclusive of bibliography and can be within the margin of 10%. 


The minor essay is based on material covered in week 1-6. It is an analytical essay where students must demonstrate a critical examination of methodological approaches in the context of development work. Students may use both required and recommended sources from the unit outline but may also explore other sources. For further details, see wattle.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 50 %
Due Date: 03/06/2019
Return of Assessment: 17/06/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3

Major Essay

Purpose of assignment:

The major essay gives students the opportunity to apply the methodological and analytical tools covered throughout the semester through reviewing a major piece of research pertaining to development which utilizes at least one of the research approaches covered in week 7-12. 


A detailed assessment guideline is provided in wattle. Word length: 3500 words

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) as submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Dr Sverre Molland

Research Interests

Dr. Molland’s overarching research interests examines the intersections between migration, development and security in a comparative perspective, with specific focus on governance regimes and intervention modalities in mainland Southeast Asia. 

Dr Sverre Molland

Tuesday 13:00 14:00
Tuesday 13:00 14:00
Dr Sverre Molland

Research Interests

Dr Sverre Molland

Tuesday 13:00 14:00
Tuesday 13:00 14:00

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions