Course syllabus

SOCIOL 701: Advanced Skills in Research

SEMESTER 1, 2018

30 points

Course Convenor: 

Bruce Curtis -


Bruce Curtis -

Office Hours:

Tuesday, 12-1. Room 910, Human Sciences Building.


Course delivery format:

3 hours of lectures

We will meet in the computer labs near the Fale Pasifika, Pacific Studies Building, 20 Wynyard Street, Room 274-130 in the first week and decide from there if we want to keep using them. They are booked for this course for the entire semester.

 Summary of Course Description:              

Examination of sociological issues in research design, execution, analysis and interpretation. Particular attention is paid to computer-assisted data analysis methods and benefits of employing multiple methods. This year I cluster the research projects / assessment around ‘How important is music in the lives of young New Zealanders?’ 

 Course outcomes:

Have knowledge of issues of research design, execution, analysis and interpretation in research.

Have advanced knowledge of both methods-oriented elements and the theoretical and epistemological underpinnings of research.

Have some experience with the practical elements of research, including using appropriate technology.

 Assessment Summary:

There are 4 assignments, all based around the theme 'How important is music in the lives of young New Zealanders?’

The 4 assignments are each worth 25% (3000 words):

Secondary Research - Literature Review: Due 28 March, 2018.

Content Analysis - Using SPSS and the NZ Top 40 Singles Chart ( Due 18 April, 2018.

Ethics Application - Using the UA HPEC forms: Due 9 May, 2018.

Auto-Ethnography - Due 31 May, 2018.


Weekly Topics:

Week 1 - Secondary Research / Content Analysis

Week 2 - Secondary Research / Content Analysis

Week 3 - Secondary Research / Content Analysis

Week 4 - Positioning / Interviewing

Week 5 - Interviewing / Semiotic analysis

Week 6 - Ethical Research – UA HPEC

Week 7 - Ethical Research - Post-Colonialism

Week 8 - TAGS and NVivo

Week 9 - Thematic Analysis

Week 10 - Auto-ethnography

Week 11 - Auto-ethnography

Week 12 - Review


 Workload and deadlines for submission of coursework:           

The University of Auckland's expectation is that students spend 10 hours per week on a 15-point course, including time in class and personal study. Students should manage their academic workload and other commitments accordingly. Deadlines for coursework are set by course convenors and will be advertised in course material. You should submit your work on time. In extreme circumstances, such as illness, you may seek an extension but you may be required to provide supporting information before the assignment is due. Late assignments without a pre-approved extension may be penalised by loss of marks – check course information for details.

Course summary:

Date Details Due