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Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - POS6736

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Current Status: Approved by SCNS - 2013-02-15
Campus: Tampa
Submission Type: Change
Course Change Information (for course changes only): This course is part of our changes to the MA program, and will also serve as part of the first sequence of methods courses for our MA, and PhD programs. It is a new course that will serve as prerequisite for both the MA and PhD methodology sequence.
Comments: GC 12/3/12. - MA in Pol. Science changes Aprd spring 2012. GC apprd 12/3/12. SYS 12/4/12. SCNS 12/12/12. PENDING nmbr for state submission (was submitted 6933, Sel topics) Propsd nmbr 6737. Chgd New to Change 1/25. to SCNS 2/11/13. Appd Eff 4/1/13

  1. Department and Contact Information

    Tracking Number Date & Time Submitted
    2247 2009-11-24
    Department College Budget Account Number
    Government and International Affairs AS 1231-000-00
    Contact Person Phone Email
    Dr. Mark Amen 8139746912

  2. Course Information

    Prefix Number Full Title
    POS 6736 Research Design

    Is the course title variable? N
    Is a permit required for registration? N
    Are the credit hours variable? N
    Is this course repeatable?
    If repeatable, how many times? 0

    Credit Hours Section Type Grading Option
    3 C - Class Lecture (Primarily) R - Regular
    Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum)
    POL 6933 Research Design
    Course Online? Percentage Online
    C - Face-to-face (0% online) 0





    Course Description

    Introduces a variety of research methods, which provide students with tools to conduct their own research. It covers topics such as stating a research question;literature review;causation,hypotheses,and variables;among others.

  3. Justification

    A. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course.

    Replacing Selected Topics with Permanent number; already listed in program

    B. 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?

    It is a required Research Methods Course for both MA and Ph.D. students. It will be a prerequisite for taking POS 6933 Quantitative Analysis. Since it is a required course the demand for it will be high. The course could be useful to students in other social science programs who would like to know the art of social science research.

    C. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times?

    Yes, 1 time

    D. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.)

    Must have a Ph.D. with a concentration in Research Methods. Three current members of the faculty can teach this course.

  4. Other Course Information

    A. Objectives

    The course is designed to enable students to:(1)have a good understanding of scientific research in Political Science; (2)understand the relationship between a hypothesis, literature review, variables, and data; (3)help students know the differences between experimental, survey, archival and other types of research methods; and(4)know the difference between bivariate and multivariate analysis.

    B. Learning Outcomes

    By the end of this course, students will be able to:(1) formulate a viable research question and hypotheses; (2) apply principles of theory and model building; (3) identify the benefits and shortcomings of different methodologies; and execute an original research project. Methods of assessment will be exams, class reports, and research papers.

    C. Major Topics

    Some major topics are: Scientific research on politics and research design; the research question and literature review;important concepts in scientific research; experimental studies; survey research;the comparative method; and archival research; and the like.

    D. Textbooks

    There is no required textbook. Students are given a variety of readings, including:

    James Fearon,"Counterfactuals and Hypothesis testing in Political Science", World Politics, 1991.

    Robert Alcock, and David Collier, "Measurement Validity: A shared Standard for Qualitative and Quantitative Research", APSR, 1995.etc. etc.

    E. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases

    James Fearon,"Counterfactuals and Hypothesis testing in Political Science", World Politics, 1991.

    Robert Alcock, and David Collier, "Measurement Validity: A shared Standard for Qualitative and Quantitative Research", APSR, 1995.etc. etc.

    F. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy

    •Assignments (35%) are a series of individual assignments that facilitate the completion of the research paper and the understanding of course material.

    .Abstract and Questions (20%) every week students prepare 1-2 paragraph abstracts for each of the assigned readings.

    .A Peer Review (10%).

    .A research paper (30%)

    .Weekly Presentation (5%). Please see syllabus for details.

    G. Assignments, Exams and Tests

    Course outline includes: Foundations of Political Science Research; Choosing a methodology; the research question and literature review;important concepts in scientific research; types of research methods, etc. Assignments include summary of assigned readings; research design paper involving a topic in either International Relations or Comparative Politics, and weekly presentations.

    H. Attendance Policy

    Course Attendance at First Class Meeting – Policy for Graduate Students: For structured courses, 6000 and above, the College/Campus Dean will set the first-day class attendance requirement. Check with the College for specific information. This policy is not applicable to courses in the following categories: Educational Outreach, Open University (TV), FEEDS Program, Community Experiential Learning (CEL), Cooperative Education Training, and courses that do not have regularly scheduled meeting days/times (such as, directed reading/research or study, individual research, thesis, dissertation, internship, etc.). Students are responsible for dropping undesired courses in these categories by the 5th day of classes to avoid fee liability and academic penalty. (See USF Regulation – Registration - 4.0101,

    Attendance Policy for the Observance of Religious Days by Students: In accordance with Sections 1006.53 and 1001.74(10)(g) Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6C-6.0115, the University of South Florida (University/USF) has established the following policy regarding religious observances: (

    In the event of an emergency, it may be necessary for USF to suspend normal operations. During this time, USF may opt to continue delivery of instruction through methods that include but are not limited to: Blackboard, Elluminate, Skype, and email messaging and/or an alternate schedule. It’s the responsibility of the student to monitor Blackboard site for each class for course specific communication, and the main USF, College, and department websites, emails, and MoBull messages for important general information."Students in need of academic accomodations for a disability may consult with the Office of Students with Disabilities services to arrange appropriate accomodations. Students are required to give reasonable notice prior to requesting an accomodation."

    I. Policy on Make-up Work

    All guidelines and due dates will be provided at the end of the syllabus.Neither late nor electronic submission of assignments will be accepted.Spelling and grammatical errors will negatively affect your grade.

    J. Program This Course Supports

    MA in Political Science & Ph.D. Government

  5. Course Concurrence Information

    Many graduate programs in Social Sciences (for example Sociology Graduate Students). The course will, of course, focus largely on analysis of political issues/phenomena.

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