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Unit information: Principles of Quantitative Social Science in 2021/22

Unit name Principles of Quantitative Social Science
Unit code SOCI20069
Credit points 20
Level of study I/5
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Sims
Open unit status Not open




School/department School of Sociology, Politics and International Studies
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law

Description including Unit Aims

Understanding how to use, present and analyse data, select the right statistical test, interpret the results correctly and to communicate findings honestly and effectively are essential tools in social science, policy research and also in business and commerce. The aim of this research is to introduce students to the principles of statistical enquiry drawing on examples from social scientific research. It will also provide an introduction to the statistical software, SPSS. The unit forms part of the shared interdisciplinary pathway for students taking any of the '... with quantitative research methods' degree programmes in childhood studies, politics, social policy and sociology. It may be open to other students within those Schools.

Intended Learning Outcomes

On completing this unit the student will have knowledge and understanding of descriptive, inferential and relational statistics, the difference between parametric and non-parametric methods, methods of sampling, how to interpret the results of statistical analyses, how to use SPSS, and of some of the common sources of statistical dishonesty and error.

Teaching Information

The unit will be taught through blended learning methods, including a mix of synchronous and asynchronous teaching activities

Assessment Information

Portfolio of examples of data analysis (50%) Take-home exam (72 hours to complete) (50%)


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How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.