CALIFORNIA STATE POLYTECHNIC UNIVERSITY - POMONA

POLITICAL SCIENCE DEPARTMENT

PLS205/205A

Introduction to Research Method
Syllabus

Class Syllabus

Office Phone : 909 869-3879
Fax: (909) 869-6995
E-mail: smemerson@csupomona.edu

Office Hours:
Monday and Tuesday 1:00 to 2:00 p.m.;  
Saturday 1:30 to 3:30 p.m

Course Objective and Resources:

Powermutt is a system developed by Dr. John Korey that integrates topics about the scientific method with areas of interest for political science students. These materials have been developed specifically for PLS 205. The written discussions provided under Topics are augmented with data sets, code books, exercises and on-line resources to guide and support student understanding and mastery of research methods and techniques.

The objective is to empower students to:

Course Procedures:

There are reading assignments for each week.

The pace of the class may not always be synchronized with the assignments. You need to keep current with the readings and review the material before the week's work begins. The reading assignments are the basis for the class work.

The class uses a hands-on, learning- by- doing- approach. The faculty is responsible for providing an appropriate foundation, introducing some initial questions and concepts that will serve as a basis for exploration and discussion.

The student's role is to try out the resources provided and to question and explore the resources provided.

Students are responsible for all information presented in each class meeting. This includes substantial course material and procedural matters such as changes in schedules, assignments, etc.

Download the rules and requirements of the class and submit your signed copy by the end of week 1.

Grades
Grades are based on a scale of 100.

 100-95= A;

94-90=A-

 89-87 =B+

86-83=B

82-80=B-

 79-77 =C+;

76-73=C

72-70=C-

 69-67 =D+

66-63=D

62-60=D-

Below 60 = F


Required Materials:

Korey, John 2006. Powermutt Primer (Politically Oriented Web Enhanced Research Methods for Undergraduates--Topics and Tools) Available to students through Cal Poly Copy Center for a nominal cost. SPSS . You may buy a copy at the Bronco Copy Center in the BSC for about $14.74. including tax.

Software is available to you at the Computer Lab and on Saturday afternoons in 1-317.

SPSS offers software options at the web site www.e-academy.com where you can "lease/rent" the software for a limited period of time. If you wish to utilize the lease option contact SPSS sales directly at 1-800-543-2185. Otherwise you may use the 1-317 lab for free each Friday. However, the student needs to elect one option or the other.

DATA SETS: anes04, anes08, anespanl, countries, countries-revised, gsscums.sav, gsscums-revised, house, senate, states-revised, states, calsenate and calassembly are on line.

Course Requirements:

Pop quizzes (best 4 out of 5)

Practicum mid term

Practicum final

Project selected and scholarly articles described*

40

15

15

10

 

Project Report *

20

 

 TOTAL

 100

* Please maintain a copy of ALL assignments submitted for a grade.

Schedule of Class Sessions


Session
Date

Topics

Readings and Assignments

Week 1
January 7

Introduction
LOGGING ON and DOWNLOADS

Course Introduction: What knowing is?
Developing a hypothesis and identifying relevant literature

Powermutt (P) Introduction and Chapter 1

Citations   & On-line resources e.g. JSTOR of particular use are brief tutorials noted as part 1 through part 5.

Chapter 2 and 3

WEEK 2


January 14

January 16

Plagiarism** Be sure to understand what plagiarism is and how to avoid it.

Final papers will be submitted electronically and in hard copy. Electronic copies will be screened through "turnitin.com".

Describing, Organizing Discrete Data

In Class Exercise 1

 Signed Rules and Regulations

Research Task Submit name, topic, independent and dependent variables and data set on 3X5 card.

**
Powermutt Chapter 3 and 4

WEEK 3
January 21
 
January 23

Videos


Martin L. King Holiday


Research designs, qualitative methods , data manipulation and sampling

In Class Exercise 2 ; Sampling size http://www.surveysystem.com/sscalc.htm

mlking
**
  Powermutt Chapters 5 and 6

WEEK 4

January 28
 

Reliability and Validity

Summing Up:  Exercise
 

 

Submit Assignment 1 of quarterly project which includes: a title, introduction and brief description of scholarly literature.

See Research Task for week 2;
TEMPLATE items 1,2, 3 and 7.

Powermutt Chapters 6
**

WEEK 5

February 4

Contingency Tables (Cross tab) Analysis

In Class Exercise 3
CONCEPTS &EXPERTS

Powermutt Chapter 7

WEEK 6
February 11

Using Control Variables in Contingency Analysis.

In Class Exercise 4

Powermutt: Chapter 8
 **

WEEK 7
February 18

Preparation for Practicum
Mid Term Practicum
exam

Core Concept Review
Introduction to Interval/Ratio analysis

Powermutt Intro to Chapter 8

WEEK 8

February 25

COURSE ROADMAP

Interval Ratio Data

Distribution of interval/ ratio data [scroll down to empirical rule]

Standard Scores and Distributions -- Z scores and skewness (fun applet)

In Class Exercise 5 EX**
In Class Exercise 6

Research Task- Research Project
Powermutt Chapters 9 and 10

Powermutt Chapter 11 intro

WEEK 9

February March 4

Hypothesis Testing: Comparing

Means-
When are average differences between groups significant.

Introduction to correlation and regression
 
In Class 7 and Review

**
Powermutt Chapter 11



Powermutt Chapter 12

WEEK 10
 March 11

Correlation and Linear/Multiple Regression
MODELING with. Jon Stewart

Powermutt: Chapter 12

**

Week 10

March 13

Wrapping up and review  

PROJECTS DUE

Student evaluations.

Research Task- Research Project: intro, lit review, methods, analysis, conclusions, reference list and SPSS output.
TEMPLATE for Interval Ratio analysis

FINAL
March 20
1:40

Final Practicum Examination
Dataset :select senate.sav

10.Powermutt Chapters 9-12

Includes topics from week 7-- 10.

 


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This page is Copyright ; 2004 by S. M. Emerson. Updated, Winter 2012
Space for this page is provided by California State Polytechnic University Pomona. Although it is intended to further educational mission of the university, the opinions expressed here are those of Dr. S. M. Emerson and do not reflect official policy of the University. Send email to smemerson@csupomona.edu