|Class Time:T TH 1:40 – 3:00||Instructor: Dr. Leonard Ray|
|Room: Coates 209||Office:240 Stubbs Hall|
|Office Hours: M, W 10:00 – 12:00||Tel: 578-2542|
Most of what you have been taught at LSU was learned at some point by someone else doing original research. Many “research” papers written at the college level rely exclusively on secondary sources, and report the results of research done by others. Stop reading about what other people have discovered and go discover something yourself! Form your own theories, and test them. Confront conventional “wisdom” with careful observation and see if something “everyone knows” is wrong. Begin to add to the collected knowledge of humanity. Perhaps you will learn something that will be taught to the next generation of college students.
This course is intended to show you how to prepare and execute an original empirical research project of your own design. One way we learn how to do research is by carefully examining the strengths and weaknesses of research which has been done by others. In addition to teaching you how to be a better producer of research, this examination of research should prepare you to be a more critical consumer of research, better equipped to evaluate the importance and quality of the research reports you read.
Phillip Pollock. (text) The Essentials of Political Analysis. CQ Press 2002. ISBN: 1568026536
Phillip Pollock. (workbook) An SPSS Companion to Political Analysis. CQ Press 2002.ISBN: 1568027702
Susan E. Morgan, Thomas Reichert, Tyler R. Harrison. From Numbers to Words : Reporting Statistical Results for the Social Sciences. Allyn & Bacon; 1st edition 2001.ISBN: 080133280X
Jan 18. Course description, brief history of political science
Jan -20. The nature of Political Science research
Pollock Essentials- Introduction and Chapter 8
Elster Chapter 1
How to write a research report SPSS Companion to Political Analysis (Chapter 10)
Jan 25. Rational Choice
Elster Chapters 2, 3, and 4
Jan 27. Unselfish or Arational models
Elster Chapters 5, 6, and 8
Feb 1. Games, Norms, and Collective Action
Elster Chapters 11, 12, and 13
Feb 3. Theoretical Approaches in Practice
POLI 4001 Readings for Feb. 3Read the three articles from the list below. Take notes on the theoretical explanations used in each piece
Norms and LearningGenerations, Status and Party Identification: A Theory of Operant Conditioning Keith R. Billingsley; Clyde Tucker Political Behavior Vol. 9, No. 4 (1987), pp. 305-322
Evolution/selectionEvolutionary Paradigms in the Social Sciences George Modelski; Kazimierz Poznanski International Studies Quarterly Vol. 40, No. 3, Special Issue: Evolutionary Paradigms in the Social Sciences (Sep., 1996), pp. 315-319
Rational ChoiceIs Nuclear Deterrence Rational? Steven J. Brams; D. Marc Kilgour PS Vol. 19, No. 3 (Summer, 1986), pp. 645-651
Assignment 1 Modeling and Theorizing (Due Feb 10) Your turn to play Social Scientist
Feb 8 Mardi Gras Holiday (March 7-9)
Feb 10. Presentation and Discussion of Models/Theories
Feb 15. Concepts, Units, and Measurement
Pollock Ch 1
S. Stevens, "On The Theory of Scales of Measurement" Science Volume 103 Issue 2685 (June 7 1946) 677-680.
Feb 17. Concepts, Units, and Measurement in practice
Maier and Holbrook 'Seen my Opportunities'
Abney and Hill 'Natural Disasters'
Assignment 2 Measurement (Due Feb 22)
Evaluate Jeffrey Segal and Albert Cover. 1989. Ideological Values and the Votes of US Supreme Court Justices American Political Science Review V. 83 Issue 2 557-565.
Feb 22. Explanations and Hypotheses
Pollock Essentials- Ch 2
Feb 24. Research Design in Practice
Abney and Hill. Natural Disasters as a Political Variable: The Effect of a Hurricane on an Urban Election The American Political Science Review, Vol. 60, No. 4. (Dec., 1966), pp. 974-981.
Albert Cover and Bruce Brumberg Baby Books and Ballots: The Impact of Congressional Mail on Constituent Opinion The American Political Science Review 76: 347 – 359.
Assignment 3. Research Design (Due March 1)
Stephen Ansolabehere, Shanto Iyengar, Adam Simon, Nicholas Valentino Does Attack Advertising Demobilize the Electorate? The American Political Science Review, Vol. 88, No. 4. (Dec., 1994), pp. 829-838.
March 1. Basic Univariate Descriptions
Pollock Essentials-Ch 3 (1st half)
March 3. Introduction to SPSS
ASSIGNMENT 4 (Due March 10)
SPSS Companion (Chs. 1 and 2)
March 8. Basic Bivariate Comparisons
Pollock Essentials-Ch 3(2nd half)
March 10. Bivariate Comparisons in practice
ASSIGNMENT 5 (Due March 17) SPSS Companion (Ch. 3)
March 15 Controlled Comparisons
Pollock Essentials-Ch 4
March 17 Did Bush Steal Florida in 2004?
Florida 2004 readings
Are Professors Liberal? Read Charles Spaulding and Henry Turner 1968. "Political Orientation and Field of Specialization among College Professors" Sociology of Education 41(3): 247-62.
ASSIGNMENT 6 (Due March 31) SPSS Companion (Chs. 4 and 5)
Week 10: March 22-24 Spring Break
March 29. Sampling and Inference Pollock Essentials-Ch 5
March 31. Samples vs. Sampling distributions
April 5. Tests of Significance and Measures of Association Pollock Essentials-Ch 6
April 7. Hypothesis Testing and Tea Tasting Ronald Fisher, The Design of Experiments London: Oliver and Boyd. Chapter 2.
ASSIGNMENT 7 (Due April 15) SPSS Companion (Chs. 6 and 7)
April 13. Correlation and Regression
Pollock Essentials-Ch 7
April 15. Correlation and Regression Continued
April 19. Multiple Regression
April 21. Correlation and Regression in Practice
ASSIGNMENT 8 (Due April 28) SPSS Companion (Chs. 8 and 9)
April 26. Critique of literature
Lewis-Beck and Alford 1980 “Can Government Regulate Mine Safety? The Coal Mine Example” APSR 74: 745-756.
April 28. Critique of literature
Joseph F. Sheley, Cindy D. Ashkins. “Crime, Crime News, and Crime Views” Public Opinion Quarterly, Vol. 45, No. 4. (1981), pp. 492-506.
May 3 and 5. Semester Review
Research Project Due May 5