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Level 41

Research Methods- Part 1 (Education Related)


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Longitudinal Surveys
Surveys that are repeated at intervals over a period of time, to track changes that may be taking place
Surveys Advantages
Collects data from a large number of individuals which allows for precise comparisons and qualiative data can be produced
Surveys Disadvantages
People tend to lie on surveys and surveys are hard to get high RESPONSE RATES
Experiments Advantages
Highly controlled and scientific which means they can be easy repeated and become more and more reliable
Experiments Disadvantages
Sociology has very little use for experiments and furthermore there is the chance for the hawthrone effect to occur
Hawthrone Effect
refers to a phenomenon in which participants alter their behaviour when they know they are being studied
Experiment Example
Rosenthal and Jacobson used this research method for their IQ experiment in the sealed environment of a school
Structured Interview Advantages
Quicker to carry out than Unstructured, you can assess participants truthfullness against other participants as their inteview would have followed the same format
Structured Interview Disadvantages
They can be accused of being too ridgid and it LIMITS THE ANSWERS that participants can give. Researchers can also have manipulated the questions to get the answers they want
Unstructured Interview Advantages
Allows for a flexible conversation to develop and this is useful for sensitive topics. Reponses can be followed up in depth
Unstructured Interview Disadvantages
All conversations are different and hard to analyse as one sample this interviews also take a LONG TIME to carry out
Interview Effect (negatives of interviews)
Participant may wish to please the interviewer
Interviewer Effect (Negatives of interviews)
The Age/Race/ Gender etc can may influence the results of participant. i.e. a Young working class boy is unlikely to open up to a upper class elderly sociologist academic
Interview Example
Labov's study. Which helped him to fully understand the linguistic styles of working class Harlem boys. This research method helped him develop a comfatble rapport with these boys which produced rich data
Triangulation
This is where a sociologist uses mutiple research methods to get their data. HEY is an example as she used, interviews, observations and documents
Triangulation Limitation
Whilst the multiple methods give detailed insight, it is VERY EXPENSIVE and TIME CONSUMING
Distortion
Can occur in data if participants do not reply honestly to researchers questions
Francis Observation
this form of reserach allowed Francis the ability to discover the rise of laddish subcultures in young boys.