CIS 703 Seminar in Research Methods for Management Studies

The purpose of this course is to familiarize Ph.D. students who have recently entered a doctoral program with the goals, approaches, and methods for conducting academic research in social sciences, business and information sciences. We will consider what makes research scientifically interesting, how to design research studies that are rigorous and relevant, and what tradeoffs various research designs and methods present.  This course begins the process of socializing doctoral students into the academic research culture and of developing their interests in research topics and methodological approaches.  Students should expect to take two to three additional methods courses (e.g., courses in statistics and other quantitative methods, experimental design, qualitative methods, and so on) during their Ph.D. program, to develop skills in specific methods in sufficient detail for dissertation research.  Check course catalogues and with fellow students for recommended courses.

Elizabeth Davidson
Room BUSADM E303 (tel) 956-6657 e-mail:

Topics to be covered:

  • Ontological, epistemological and methodological assumptions in social science research
  • Theory-driven research; moving from abstract concepts to concrete representations of constructs and variables
  • Designing social science experiments
  • Survey research
  • Field work, case study, and participant observation methods
  • Collecting data via questionnaires and interviewing
  • Collecting observational and archival data
  • Data coding and analysis
  • Variance and process models
  • Presenting research results
  • Assessing quality and validity in research design and execution
  • Research ethics
  • Resources for researchers


Fall 2016