Why teach research methods?

It is in their first research methods course that students learn how to “think like a social scientist.”  It’s pretty rewarding to help them on this road.  Teaching research methods also gives us a chance to draw on our own experiences in research, now or in the past, and show students how to “learn by doing.”  Investigating is informed by what I have learned about the practice of research by administering surveys, conducting interviews, analyzing secondary data, conducting content analyses, or evaluating social programs. Students will become so much more proficient as researchers if they have some opportunities to try out some methods or read accounts of how other researchers have used research methods.

As students start to do a little investigating themselves, their learning and enthusiasm will increase.

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