Summer 2020 - SA 257 J100

Understanding Quantitative Research in Sociology and Anthropology (SA) (4)

Class Number: 2189

Delivery Method: In Person

Overview

  • Course Times + Location:

    Mo 5:30 PM – 9:20 PM
    REMOTE LEARNING, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    SA 101 or 150.

Description

CALENDAR DESCRIPTION:

Takes the mystery, but not the magic, out of quantitative research in anthropology and sociology by introducing analytical skills necessary for reading, understanding, and critiquing quantitative research. Students evaluate popular coverage of social research; learn concepts related to statistical significance; conduct basic statistical analysis, including designing graphs and tables. Quantitative.

COURSE DETAILS:

The goal of this course is to take the mystery out of numbers and statistics. We are presented with numerical information about the social world every day. We might read that 34% of Canadians support one political candidate, or that women tend to marry for the first time at age 30 while men marry at age 32. Where does this information come from and what does it really tell us? This course will provide an introduction to thinking about, reading, understanding, evaluating and presenting statistical analyses of data on anthropological and sociological topics.

We will discuss basic issues such as: What does it mean to measure things like abstract and moral attitudes, experiences or historical processes with numbers? What role do, and should, numbers have in society? What does this quantification allow us to do, and what are its limits? We will explore fundamental principles that form the basis of statistical analysis. What does it mean to say a group has an “average height”? What is statistical inference, and what are the concepts that its claims are based on? We will also read and compare news media descriptions of studies with original study reports, interpret different types of tables and graphs, and identify questions we should ask about each of these. You will also present findings yourself: using data from surveys, you will ask questions and answer them using quantitative data. You will learn how to use a statistics program to describe them with clear and appropriate tables and graphs.

Grading

  • Article evaluations (2 x 12%) 24%
  • Data project 31%
  • Exams 45%

NOTES:

Grading: Where a final exam is scheduled and the student does not write the exam or withdraw from the course before the deadline date, an N grade will be assigned. Unless otherwise specified on the course syllabus, all graded assignments for this course must be completed for a final grade other than N to be assigned. An N is considered as an F for the purposes of scholastic standing.

Grading System: The Undergraduate Course Grading System is as follows:

A+ (95-100) | A (90-94) | A- (85-89) | B+ (80-84) | B (75-79) | B- (70-74) | C+ (65-69) | C (60-64) | C- (55-59) | D (50-54) | F (0-49) | N*
*N standing to indicate the student did not complete course requirements

Academic Dishonesty and Misconduct Policy: The Department of Sociology & Anthropology follows SFU policy in relation to grading practices, grade appeals (Policy T 20.01) and academic dishonesty and misconduct procedures (S10.01‐S10.04). Unless otherwise informed by your instructor in writing, in graded written assignments you must cite the sources you rely on and include a bibliography/list of references, following an instructor-approved citation style.  It is the responsibility of students to inform themselves of the content of SFU policies available on the SFU website.

Materials

MATERIALS + SUPPLIES:

Universal Access Remote learning for this semester requires a computer or tablet, camera, and internet access. Most laptops and desktops are running OSX and Windows. Tablets may be Android, iOS or Windows based. Headsets are advised but not necessary. Note that students have access to free Office 365 or Adobe Creative Cloud found here.

REQUIRED READING:

Dressler, W. W. (2015). The 5 things you need to know about statistics: Quantification in ethnographic research. London, UK: Routledge.

This title is available online through the SFU Library here.
ISBN: 978-1-611323931

Additional readings will be posted to Canvas.

Registrar Notes:

ACADEMIC INTEGRITY: YOUR WORK, YOUR SUCCESS

SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html

TEACHING AT SFU IN SUMMER 2020

Please note that all teaching at SFU in summer term 2020 will be conducted through remote methods. Enrollment in this course acknowledges that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who believe they may need class or exam accommodations, including in the current context of remote learning, are encouraged to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as soon as possible to ensure that they are eligible and that approved accommodations and services are implemented in a timely fashion.