Project #51041 - Theory, Research, and Methodology

 

Directions: Please provide responses to questions below.  Please use proper APA citation for any resources that you use.  Your responses should be 1 to 2 paragraphs in length for each question.

 

 

 

1.      Describe how concrete and abstract concepts differ.  Give an example of an abstract ideal type and a concrete classification.

 

 

 

2.      How do prediction and theoretical explanations differ?  Can you have one without the other?

 

 

 

3.      What are the three criteria for causality?  Why do all three criteria need to be addressed for causality to be considered?

 

 

 

4.      Social reality exists on many different levels and so sociologists often study social phenomena at these different levels.  Describe how micro-, meso-, and macro-levels of social reality differ for social researchers.

 

 

 

5.      Provide an ideal type of a concept and explain how it might be used in social research.

 

 

 

6.      How are major theoretical frameworks used in research, if at all?

 

 

 

7.      Researchers approach the building and testing of theories through deduction or induction.  How do these approaches generally relate to quantitative and qualitative data collection techniques?

 

 

 

8.      In the news media, ideologies and social theory surrounding diverse social issues, from the state of the political school system to Medicare benefits to the elderly, are often given equal air time.  How do ideologies and social theory differ?  How are they similar?  Why is it difficult for social theory to confront ideological statements?

 

 

 

9.      Discuss the difference between formal and substantive theory in terms of focus.  What are the strengths and weaknesses of each theoretical focus?  Is there any relationship between the research audience (basic versus applied) and research focus (formal versus substantive theory)?

 

 

 

10.    Each of the three main approaches to social science makes assumptions about “nature of human beings.”  Compare and contrast the positivist, interpretive, and critical approaches take on the “nature of human beings.”

 

 

 

11.    Social scientists use their knowledge in many different ways.  How does each of the three main approaches to social science utilize the knowledge they learn?  Utilize the instrumental, practical, and the reflexive-dialectic orientations to guide your answer.

 

 

 

12.    Can science be “value free”?  How does each approach to the social sciences address the issue of being “value free”?  Explain.

 

 

 

13.    What are some of the criticisms of positivism?  How do the interpretive and critical approaches address these criticisms?

 

 

 

14.    Each of the three main approaches to social science has strengths and weaknesses.  Many of the weakness of positivism are subsequently addressed by interpretive and critical approaches, and vice versa.  How have the perspectives of feminist and postmodern research address further weakness of each of the three main approaches?

 

 

 

15.    Having been exposed to the three main approaches to social science, briefly outline how each perspective would propose research on the social issues surrounding the use of the death penalty in the United States.

 

 

 

 

 

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Due By (Pacific Time) 12/13/2014 09:00 am
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