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Methodological Concepts
A Critical Guide




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ISBN 9781032395746
February 15, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
200 Pages

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Book Description

Methodological Concepts: A Critical Guide clarifies many key terms and issues in social research methodology. It outlines the conventional meanings of these terms, but also addresses their contentious character. The aim is to offer interpretations of them that provide a coherent conception of the nature of social science.

This book is premised on the idea that more clarity about the meaning of major methodological concepts is essential, and that the disagreements which pervade the field must be addressed. Numerous key terms are discussed across 13 chapters, including ‘methodology’, ‘method’, ‘inquiry’, ‘research’, ‘science’, ‘truth’, ‘fact’, ‘rigour’, ‘bias’, ‘objectivity’, ‘data’, ‘evidence’, ‘induction’, ‘deduction’, ‘abduction’, ‘understanding’, ‘explanation’, ‘reflexivity’, ‘triangulation’, ‘theory’, and ‘researcher integrity’. These concepts have been implicated in fundamental divisions among social scientists, exemplified by the ‘paradigm wars’ of the past few decades. The chapters of this book provide an overview of the various meanings given to these terms, whilst also offering distinctive interpretations designed to provide a sound basis for social research.

Methodological Concepts: A Critical Guide will be of great use to any student or researcher working in the social sciences.

Table of Contents

Introduction

  1. Methodology and method
  2. Inquiry, research, and science
  3. Truth
  4. Fact
  5. Bias and objectivity
  6. Rigour
  7. Data and evidence
  8. Deduction, induction, and abduction
  9. Understanding and explanation
  10. Reflexivity
  11. Triangulation
  12. Theory
  13. Researcher integrity

References

Glossary of philosophical terms

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Author(s)

Biography

Martyn Hammersley is Emeritus Professor of Educational and Social Research at The Open University, UK. His research interests include the sociology of education, the sociology of the media, ethnography, and social research methodology. He is the author of numerous books, including The Politics of Social Research (1995), Reading Ethnographic Research (Second edition, 1997), Educational Research, Policymaking and Practice (2002), Questioning Qualitative Inquiry (2008), The Myth of Research-Based Policy and Practice (2013), The Limits of Social Science (2014), The Radicalism of Ethnomethodology (2018), Ethnography: Principles in Practice (Fourth edition, Routledge, 2019), The Concept of Culture (2019), and Troubling Sociological Concepts (2020).