Research Methods, Ethics and Project Design
- ECTS credits
- Teaching semesters
- Course code
- Number of semesters
Objectives and Content
Objectives and Content:
The goal of the course is to learn about and apply research methods and ethics in the field of religious studies as well as to learn how to conduct a research writing project.
The course shall convey knowledge of central methodological issues as well as several core research methods from the human and social sciences used in the study of religion. In addition, the course offers knowledge about how to construct and write a research project.
Content: The course first treats several concepts and issues fundamental to the methodology of studying religion today (epistemology, comparison, feminist approaches to religion, and research ethics). Then it teaches a selection of methods used in religion (participant observation, interviewing, structured observation, content analysis, discourse analysis, history, hermeneutics, philology, and document analysis). The remainder of the course is dedicated to learning and applying techniques and strategies to write an effective research project, culminating in the writing of a proposal for an MA project.
RELV309 is mandatory in the Master¿s program in the Study of Religion, and for the students who take a master in the Study of Religion within the Teacher Education Program in History or Religion.
The student shall by the end of the course have gained the following learning outcome defined in knowledge, skills, and general competence:
- has knowledge of several concepts and issues fundamental to the methodology of studying religion today, namely epistemology, comparison, feminist approaches to religion, and research ethics.
- has knowledge of the following methods used in religious studies mostly (but not exclusively) used in the social sciences: participant observation, interviewing, structured observation, content analysis, and discourse analysis.
- has knowledge of the following methods used in religious studies mostly but not exclusively used in the human sciences: history, hermeneutics, philology, and document analysis.
- has knowledge of a number of methods, techniques, and strategies to write an effective research dissertation.
- is able to recognize and differentiate between different methodologies used in the field of religious studies.
- is able to apply one or more of these methodologies to researching religious subjects.
- is able to construct a research writing project according to common academic standards and norms.
- is able to apply various techniques to improve one's written research argumentation and style.
has knowledge of and experience with several core issues in doing religious research, several central research methods used in religious studies, and with setting up, composing and improving written research projects.
Level of Study
Semester of Instruction
Place of Instruction
Required Previous Knowledge
Recommended Previous Knowledge
Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap
Access to the Course
Teaching and learning methods
The teaching and student activities in this course will entirely take place online:
- short introductory videos.
- following each video/reading there will be a short quiz, that tests the students basic understanding of the video/reading
- individual feedback from the instructor
- discussion entries (Every week at least one short answer to a specific question and a minimum of two responses to entries by other students.) Entries should be a minimum of 50 words long.
- short written exercises (short assignments in which students practice different aspects of academic writing techniques) and reviews of other students' short written exercises
Compulsory Assignments and Attendance
Forms of Assessment
The reading list consists of 500-800 pages. In addition, students will need to read discussion postings and submissions of other students.
The reading list is published by June 1st. for the autumn semester and by December 1st. for the spring semester.