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1) Case Study research that examines a single case or large institutions or groups
often using several methods or sources
2) Close ended questions questions used in a survey that allows a limited answer only
e.g. yes, no or maybe
3) Comparative Method a research method that compares 2 social groups that are
alike except one factor
4) Content Analysis a method of analysing the content of documents and media
outputs to find out about events of interest e.g. when, where, how, why etc.
5) Control Group used in experiments to compare the experimental groups to the
control group to see whether a certain factor is effective towards a certain behaviour
6) Documents a secondary resources: PUBLIC DOCUMENTS= produced by the
government, school etc. PERSONAL DOCUMENTS= first hand information from
an individual e.g. diary, letters and autobiography
7) Experiments FIELD= real life scenario. LAB= artificial setting
8) Hawthorne Effect where the subjects know that they are being studied/ observed
and begin to behave in the way they think they should behave so the observer can
gain the correct results.
9) Hypothesis an untested theory or explanation expressed as a statement.
Sociologists seek to prove or disprove a hypothesis by testing them with or against
10) Informal Consent where those who are taking part in a study have agreed to
participate knowing exactly what the study entails and what the findings of the study
will do for others
11) Interview Schedule a list of questions to be asked in an interview which may be
unknown to the participant that the observer reads out in a specific order and way
12) Interviews FORMAL= preset, close ended questions producing quantitative data.
INFORMAL= hints are given to the participant from the observer but nothing
except the hints are planned before the interview.
13) Longitudinal Study a study of people in which information is collected over a long
period of time regularly
14) Non participant Observation a primary research method where the observer
records what the see with out taking part in the activity
15) Objectivity The absence of bias or pre conceived ideas. It implies that we can
look at things as they really are, without our opinions or values getting in the way
16) Official Statistics Quantitative data collected by the government and other
institutions. They can be gathered either by registration e.g. census, or by official
17) Open ended questions allows participants to say exactly what they want without
any pre determined answers e.g. no, yes, or maybe.
18) Participant Observation Observer takes part in the activities that the participants
are doing either covertly or overtly.
19) Pilot study a small scale trial run conducted by the observers to see whether there
are any problems with the experiment/ study
20) Population members of the target audience for the survey being conducted
21) Positivism society is made up of social facts/ statistics that can be studied to
determine the cause effect relationship
22) Primary Data data collected by the researcher themselves for their own purpose