IDNS 6393 -1 (35693)

Advanced Science Ethics (Spring 2013)
Research Methods and Lives

Syllabus


Class Meetings: Tuesday 11:00 am - 1:00 pm. Location - TBA
Instructors:
 

 

Course Description

The course covers basic concepts of sound research methodology in biomedical, human, and technology studies. These include formulation of hypotheses, study design, data collection and data analysis. The course culminates with a connection of sound research methods to sound researchers’ attitudes, by delving into the teachings of stoic philosophy.

 

Gradebook

Module #
1
2
Total
Participation
10 (Presence)
10 (Q&A)
20
Homeworks
20 (Homework 1)
20 (Homework 2)
40
Project & Essay
30 (Project)
10 (Essay)
40
Total
100

 

Reading Material

  1. Statistical Methods in Practice for Scientists and Technologists, Boddy, R. and Smith, G., Wiley, 2009
  2. Statistical Methods in Medical Research, Armitage, P. and Berry, G., and Matthews, J.N.S., Blackwell Publishing, 2008
  3. Stoics, Epicureans and Skeptics, Sharples, R.W., Routledge, 2003

 

 

Course Outline

Below is an outline of the content and activities of the course.

Lesson 1 (01/15): Formulating a Research Problem

Research Objectives and Operational Definitions


Lesson 2 (01/22): Identifying Variables

Concept vs. variables; types of variables; measurements scales


Lesson 3 (01/29): Constructing Hypotheses

Types of hypothesis; errors in testing of hypothesis
Assignment of Projects


Lesson 4 (02/05): Research Design

Functions and causality of a research design
Homework #1 Out


Lesson 5 (02/12): Selecting a Study Design

Cross-over, trend, blind, and double-blind studies


Lesson 6 (02/19): Data Collection

Data collection in qualitative and quantitative research
Homework #1 Due


Lesson 7 (02/26): Selecting a Sample

Sample size; random, non-random, and mixed sampling


Lesson 8 (03/05): Exploratory Data Analysis

Histograms and boxplots
Homework #2 Out


Lesson 9 (03/19): Significance Testing

Paired tests, ANOVA, and corrections


Lesson 10 (03/26): Non-Parametric Statistics

Descriptive statistics; Wilcoxon test


Lesson 11 (04/01): Clinical Trials

Phase I and Phase II


Lesson 12 (04/09): Stoic Philosophy

Basic principles and relevance to research life
Homework #2 Due


Lesson 13 (04/16): Stoic Philosophy

Emotion vs. rationality in dealing with success and adversity


Lesson 14 (04/23): Stoic Philosophy

Historical paradigms to follow or avoid


Lesson 15 (04/30): Project Presentations


Essays and Project Reports Due on May 1