ATS3597 - Qualitative social research - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.




Dr Michelle Duffy

Not offered in 2017


Students need to contact the Arts Student ServicesArts Student Services ( desk to enrol in the unit.


Ethnographic research is the art and science of describing a group or culture. It involves the studying groups and/or individuals as they go about their daily lives. A central premise of this unit is that the ethnographer enters the field with an open mind, but not an empty head. Before engaging with their subjects, the ethnographer begins with a problem, a theory or model, a research design, specific data collection techniques, tools of analysis, and often specific writing style. The unit examines in detail each of these activities and traces their implications for research and the researcher.


By the time students complete this unit, they will be able to:

  1. ascertain what research methods are appropriate for particular theoretical issues that they wish to explore;
  2. understand the uses and limitations of qualitative research;
  3. gain expertise on how to establish a qualitative research framework;
  4. understand the strengths and limitations of using the computer to analyse qualitative data.

    In addition for third level: students will become proficient in the use of one computer program to analyse qualitative data.


Within semester assessment: 100%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


ATS1367 and ATS1898 or SCY1802 or equivalents


SCY2816, ATS2597