Graduate Studies Reports Access

Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - SOW7402
Tracking Number - 1843

Edit function not enabled for this course.

Current Status: Approved, Permanent Archive - 2006-05-05
Submission Type:
Course Change Information (for course changes only):

Detail Information

  1. Date & Time Submitted: 2005-08-10
  2. Department: Social Work
  3. College: AS
  4. Budget Account Number: 126100
  5. Contact Person: William S. Rowe/Mary I. Armstrong
  6. Phone: 8139742706
  7. Email:
  8. Prefix: SOW
  9. Number: 7402
  10. Full Title: Qualitative Research Methods in Social Work
  11. Credit Hours: 3
  12. Section Type: C - Class Lecture (Primarily)
  13. Is the course title variable?: N
  14. Is a permit required for registration?: Y
  15. Are the credit hours variable?: N
  16. Is this course repeatable?:
  17. If repeatable, how many times?: 0
  18. Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum): Qual. social work research
  19. Course Online?: -
  20. Percentage Online:
  21. Grading Option: R - Regular
  22. Prerequisites: Must be admitted to the graduate work program. This course is restricted to majors only.
  23. Corequisites: MSW
  24. Course Description: The course will assist the doctoral student to better understand and become equipped to fulfill a role as social work researcher. The course will consider the theoretical, scientific, and political issues related to qualitative research.

  25. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course: 2nd in a series of research courses for the Ph.D. program in social work.
  26. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service? This course will be part of the required program courses. All graduate students in the Ph.D. program will take it. It will not be offered to others outside of the School of Social Work.
  27. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times? yes, once.
  28. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.) To teach this course, the instructor must have at a minimum a Ph.D.
  29. Objectives: This course will provide experiences that will assist the student to:

    1. Understand the theoretical and methodological traditions that guide contemporary qualitative research paradigms commonly used in social work research, including an understanding of their origins, appropriate uses, and knowledge and skills needed for their application.

    2. Develop a critical perspective about qualitative social work research studies in order to evaluate their scientific rigor, their strengths and weaknesses, as well as appropriate and inappropriate uses.

    3. Conceptualize, design, and implement a research study.

    4. Develop research questions and design appropriate methods.

    5. Learn methods for increasing validity and reliability in qualitative research designs.

    6. Understand a variety of qualitative data collection methods including interviewing, observation, and document analysis.

    7. Learn how to engage in qualitative fieldwork and other data collection activities in an ethical and defensible manner.

    8. Practice field observation techniques.

    9. Learn a variety of strategies for analyzing and interpreting qualitative data

    10. Learn how to write a qualitative social work research report.

    11. Understand the ethical issues associated with being a qualitative social work researcher.

    12. Learn the essential elements of human subjects protection in qualitative research.

    13. Critically examine his/her own personal and professional values as an aspect of your work as a social work researcher.

  30. Learning Outcomes: The course will consider the theoretical, scientific, and political issues related to qualitative research, and will provide classroom instruction and field application of qualitative methods to study social work problems. There have been numerous debates within social work about the merits of qualitative vs. quantitative research. This course will examine this debate and students will learn how to critically analyze this issue. Students will learn the kinds of research problems for which qualitative methods are appropriate, and to critically examine qualitative social work research in terms of design, technique, analysis, and interpretation. The seminar format will include lectures, discussion of readings, student presentations, field assignments, and a final paper.
  31. Major Topics: 1. What paradigmatic shifts have occurred within the science of knowledge that relate to research in social work?

    2. What is the importance of context in understanding human meaning and experiences?

    3. What is the role of qualitative research in social work today?

    4. What are the methods for conducting a critical evaluation of a social work research study?

    5. How does the qualitative researcher address the issues of operationalization and measurement?

    6. How does the qualitative researcher identify variables and provide openness for the emergence of new variables throughout the processes of data collection and analysis?

    7. What are the issues in establishing validity/trustworthiness in qualitative research?

    8. What are the methods for sampling subjects and/or data in qualitative research?

    9. What are the forms of data for qualitative research?

    10. What are the data collection methods for qualitative research?

    11. What are the appropriate data analysis techniques for qualitative research?

    12. What are the issues related to the interpretation of qualitative data?

    13. Are mixed methods designs appropriate for social work research?

    14. What are the ethical issues associated with the conduct of qualitative social work research?

    15. What are the appropriate products (studies, reports, biographies, histories, plans, evaluations, policies) for qualitative social work research?

  32. Textbooks: Denzin, N. K., & Lincoln, Y. S. (2000). Handbook of qualitative research, 2nd Edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications

    Lofland, J. L., & Lofland, L. H. (1995). Analyzing social settings: A guide to qualitative observation and analysis. Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Company

    Rodwell, M. K. (1998). Social work constructivist research. New York: Garland Publishing Inc.

  33. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases:
  34. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy:
  35. Assignments, Exams and Tests:
  36. Attendance Policy:
  37. Policy on Make-up Work:
  38. Program This Course Supports:
  39. Course Concurrence Information:

- if you have questions about any of these fields, please contact or