- Class Number 2008
- Term Code 3130
- Class Info
- Unit Value 6 units
- Topic On-line
- Mode of Delivery Online
- EmaP Francesca Merlan
- EmaP Francesca Merlan
- Class Dates
- Class Start Date 22/02/2021
- Class End Date 28/05/2021
- Census Date 31/03/2021
- Last Date to Enrol 01/03/2021
- EmaP Francesca Merlan
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.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- explore and compare the formulation of research questions in the social sciences and in development;
- utilise 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; and
- explore a range of ethical issues relevant to social research.
Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:
- written comments
- verbal comments
- feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc
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.
|Week/Session||Summary of Activities||Assessment|
|1||Introduction to social analysis and community politics|
|2||Political dimensions of research: gatekeepers and change|
|3||Research ethics||(on-line forum)|
|4||Gathering Data Rapidly: PRA/RRA|
|5||Gathering data non-rapidly: ethnographic research and participant observation|
|6||Focus Groups and Interviews||Teaching Break; Minor Essay Due 2 April 9 AM|
|7||Social Surveys & Questionnaires|
|8||Social Surveys & Questionnaires (cont).||(Workshop on-line forum)|
|9||Case Study: Participatory Ethnographic Evaluation Research (PEER)|
|10||Case Study: Population Census, Household Surveys and UNDP’s Multidimensional Poverty Index|
|11||Case study: Social Mapping - beyond sites and territory (development, labour migrants and social research)|
|12||Data Analysis, Fieldnotes & community engagement||Major Essay Due Friday 3 June 9 AM|
|Assessment task||Value||Due Date||Return of assessment||Learning Outcomes|
|1||10 %||*||*||1, 2, 3|
|2||40 %||02/04/2021||16/04/2021||1, 2|
* 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:
- Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure
- Special Assessment Consideration Policy and General Information
- Student Surveys and Evaluations
- Deferred Examinations
- Student Complaint Resolution Policy and Procedure
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 Academic Integrity . In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.
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.
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 amount to 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 tutorials (or forums) will not impact your participation grade.
Assessment Task 1
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3
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 amount to 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 impact 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
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2
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%.
Assessment Task 3
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3
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 is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.
The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to 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 be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, 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 Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.
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) submission must be through Turnitin.
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.
Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:
- Late submission not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.
- Late submission permitted. 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.
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. Extensions may be granted 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.
Distribution of grades policy
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Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.
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Social theory and ethnography; social change; development theory and practice
EmaP Francesca Merlan
EmaP Francesca Merlan
EmaP Francesca Merlan