Police Brutaility

Police Brutaility

TOPIC- Police Brutaility

Note from professor regarding topic-

“I warn you up front that given the nature and highly toxic way this topic has been portraited I will not except emotionally charged unsupported research. As a researcher in a graduate level course I expect unbiased research from my students not emotional rants.

Developing your Research Methodology

Your methodology should contain the following parts or answer the following questions:

What type of study are you proposing?

What variables will you be measuring?

What is your hypothesis?

What types of data will you be using?

What are the components of your study (research questions, Units of analysis)

Submit a document which outlines your proposed methodology. You can use the responses from the questions presented above as a template for how your document will be organized.

Here is some background information to help you format your Methodology document:

Research Questions and Research Design

All research starts with one or more research questions.  These are the questions that you want to answer in your research study.  For example, you might want to find out why some people vote Democrat and others vote Republican.  Or you might want to find out why some people don’t vote at all.  Another question you might want to try to answer is why some favor same-sex marriage and others oppose it.

There are lots of ways that we might go about trying to answer these questions.  Some might rely on what their friends or family tell them.  Others might rely on what people in authority like their religious leaders tell them.  Still others might use what is often called common sense to answer these questions.  But we’re going to use the scientific approach to try to answer these questions.  Thomas Sullivan defined science as a “method of obtaining knowledge about the world through systematic observations.”  Notice that science is empirical; it’s based on observations.  Also, notice that we’re talking about a particular type of observations – systematic observations.

A research design is your plan of action.  It lays out how you plan to go about answering your questions.  The research design includes how you plan to select the cases for analysis (sampling), how you will measure concepts, how you plan to collect your data, and how you will analyze the data.  Exercises two through five focus on the components of a research design and exercises six through thirteen deal with data analysis.

First, we have to learn how to formulate good research questions.  Let’s start by looking at some examples of poor questions.  Why are these poor questions?

Women are more likely than men to vote Democrat in presidential elections.  This one is easy.  It’s not a question.

Why are women more likely than men to vote Democrat in presidential elections?  This one is a little more difficult.  We want to start with the more general question such as why some people vote Democrat and others vote Republican?  Then we would consider possible answers to this question.  One of these answers might be that gender influences voting.  Since science is empirical, we would start by looking at data to see if, in fact, gender does influence voting and we would discover that in most recent presidential elections women are more likely to vote Democrat.  This would lead us to ask why women are more likely than men to vote Democrat.  But we would start our study with the more general question.

Why do dogs bark?  This is certainly a question and perhaps an interesting question.  But it’s not a question that social scientists would be interested in.  Social scientists focus on questions that involve behavior, attitudes, and opinions

What are the characteristics of a good research question?

We start by looking at general questions such as what influences voting or why do some people favor same-sex marriage and others oppose it.  As our study progresses, we move to more focused questions such as why women are more likely to vote Democrat than men.

We focus on questions that ask about behavior, attitudes, and opinions.

Good questions are clearly stated.  Questions such as what about voting aren’t clear and therefore aren’t useful.

As with everything we write, we want to make sure that we use correct spelling and good grammar.  So proofread everything you write including your questions.

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