Interdisciplinary Minor in Social Research Methods

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Students completing the interdisciplinary Minor in Social Research Methods learn how to collect, analyze, and interpret quantitative and qualitative data about people’s behaviors and opinions. These skills equip students to meet the increasing demand for professionals who can use data to support sound decision-making. The minor fosters broad skills central to many professional roles, including communication, teamwork, problem-solving, organization, and analysis. It also provides a path for students majoring in the computing sciences to learn how to apply their technical skills to social-science questions. Students completing the minor take classes in a variety of disciplines, preparing them for the modern, dynamic workplace.

The minor provides a path for students majoring the liberal or applied social sciences to deepen their data analysis skills. Thus it should appeal to students majoring in:

  • Anthropology
  • Criminal Justice
  • History
  • Political Science
  • Psychology
  • Public Health and Health Education
  • Sociology
  • Women and Gender Studies
  • Nursing

Admission to the Program

Any undergraduate student can declare the Minor in Social Research Methods.

Program Requirements

The minor requires 18 credits. Students must earn a grade of C or higher in all minor coursework.

One course in computer applications:

  • CIS 217 Fundamentals of Business Computing

One course in data management systems from the following options:

  • CIS 202 Fundamentals of Information Systems
  • CIS 422 Physical Design and Implementation with DBMS

One course in introductory statistics from the following options:

  • MTH 243 Elementary Statistics
  • MTH 244 Business Statistics
  • PSH 202 Introductory Statistics for Psychology
  • PBH 488 Applied Biostatistics and Epidemiology
  • SOC 200 Social Statistics

One course in social data collection and analysis from the following options:

  • ANT 383 Research Methods in Cultural Anthropology
  • CRJ 471 Research Methods in Criminal Justice
  • PBH 495 Health Research
  • PSH 301 Research Methods in Psychology
  • SOC 310 Social Research Methods
  • PLS 303 Political Science Research Methods
  • WMS 411 Feminist Research Methods

One course in advanced or specialized data analysis from the following options:

  • CIS 436 Data Mining
  • CRJ 491 GIS and Crime Mapping
  • ECN 304 Intermediate Statistics
  • MTH 441 Statistical Methods
  • SOC 410 Capstone Research Seminar

One course on social dynamics: A 300 or 400 level elective in ANT, PLS, PBH, SOC, or WMS; outside of one’s major(s) chosen in consultation with the minor advisor.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students successfully completing the minor in social research methods will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate basic understanding of computerized data management systems,
  2. Perform and accurately interpret the results of common data analyses,
  3. Articulate a social science research question and select appropriate data-collection and analysis methods to address it,
  4. Demonstrate basic proficiency in at least one intermediate or specialized data analysis method, and
  5. Effectively communicate social-science research findings to non-specialist audiences.