Oct 31st 2016

Understanding Research Methods (Coursera)

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This MOOC is about demystifying research and research methods. It will outline the fundamentals of doing research, aimed primarily, but not exclusively, at the postgraduate level. It places the student experience at the centre of our endeavours by engaging learners in a range of robust and challenging discussions and exercises befitting SOAS, University of London's status as a research-intensive university and its rich research heritage.

This course will appeal to those of you who require an understanding of research approaches and skills, and importantly an ability to deploy them in your studies or in your professional lives.

In particular, this course will aid those of you who have to conduct research as part of your postgraduate studies but do not perhaps have access to research methods courses, or for those of you who feel you would like additional support for self-improvement. No prior knowledge or experience in research is required to take this course and as such, the course is for everyone.

This MOOC draws on a wealth of existing course material developed to support research training across SOAS, University of London and particularly drawing from the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy (CISD). In 2015, the course was nominated for the prestigious Guardian University Award for its innovative approach to online learning.


Week 1: E-tivity 1: What Is Research and What Makes a Good Research Question?

Week 2: E-tivity 2: What Is a Literature Review and Why Do We Need to Do One?

Week 3: E-tivity 3: Why Are Planning and Management Skills Important for Research?

Week 4: E-tivity 4: How Do You Know You Have Been a Good Researcher at the End of a Project?