Document Type

Undergraduate Syllabus


Fall 2018



Course Number

DIPL 3800

Course Description

This class is an introduction to political science and international relations research methodology. My main goal is to teach you the basics of creating and consuming research in the social sciences. The course will lead you through conceptualization and theory construction, the derivation of testable hypotheses, and a variety of methodologies that may be used to evaluate these hypotheses. We will discuss causal inference, observation and measurement, and other issues encompassing both qualitative and quantitative research methods. We will discuss the way in which academic articles in the social sciences are written, and how they should be read.

This course includes some basic statistics, and requires use of SPSS or Excel (possibly R, if you are ambitious) for some class assignments. These include some simple description and cross tabulation of original data and data from the TCPSR archives.

This will be a demanding course. Research design is an enormous topic to cover in one semester. The volume of readings, videos, and other assignments will surpass many other courses.