Preface | Research

Decorative Page Banner stating the title of this text: Fundamentals of Social Research by Adam J. McKee

This book is intended for lower-division social science students in their first research methods course.  It may also be used as a gentle refresher for more advanced students as a desk reference for basic concepts.  This book is designed to introduce the student to the highly interrelated skills of research and writing in the social sciences.  It is intended to provide a solid foundation in research in a less intimidating way than more traditional texts on the subject. In our effort to accomplish this, we have broken many of our own rules on good writing.  To create a high degree of comfort in the reader, we have adopted a very informal style. We use the first person, and we address you, the reader, directly. Nevertheless, we think that this is appropriate because this isn’t a scientific paper; it’s a book about science.

The design of this text is different from most research texts in that it divides the field into thirty discrete modules rather than the traditional longer chapters.  There are several reasons for this. The first is that the student more easily digests discrete topics. Another important reason is that it allows the professor to prioritize selecting the most important information for inclusion in a course when time inevitably runs short.  It also provides convenient breakpoints to conduct classroom exercises, such as demonstrating how to use important electronic databases.

Note on Style

This book mentions the PA style in many places but does not attempt to adhere to that style with any rigor.  A major reason for this is that pedagogy (the science of learning and teaching) has different requirements than submitting scientific information to the body of scholars.

Modification History

File Created:  07/24/2018

Last Modified:  06/11/2021

Content | Next]

Print for Personal Use

You are welcome to print a copy of pages from this Open Educational Resource (OER) book for your personal use. Please note that mass distribution, commercial use, or the creation of altered versions of the content for distribution are strictly prohibited. This permission is intended to support your individual learning needs while maintaining the integrity of the material.

Print This Text Section Print This Text Section

This work is licensed under an Open Educational Resource-Quality Master Source (OER-QMS) License.

Open Education Resource--Quality Master Source License


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.