SOCI2000: Administration

Lecture Slides

Slides for Week 1 Lecture

Acknowledgement of Country

This class is taught on the lands of the Wattamattageal clan of the Darug nation.

We acknowledge the Wattamattageal clan as the traditional custodians of the land on which Macquarie University stands.

We pay our respects to Elders past, present, and emerging.

This land was never ceded. It always was and always will be Aboriginal land.

What is an acknowledgement of country?
Why is an acknowledgement of country important?


2. Expectations

   What you can expect of me

1. Before semester starts

Before semester starts I will provide weekly topics and weekly readings.

2. Communication outside class: Messenger or WhatsApp

Outside class you should consult with me via Facebook messenger or WhatsApp.

I will also respond to email, but it is not ideal for answering research project questions, as often we need to have a dialogue which is easier on a messaging platform.

  • Phone/SMS/WhatsApp: +61 (0) 490 911 666
  • Facebook messenger: m.me/nicholas.m.harrigan
  • Skype: nick_harrigan
  • Email:
  • Alternate email: Gmail messages are likely to get through quicker, and less likely to get caught in a Macquarie spam filter (a genunine problem). Do not use Gmail for important official correspondence, such as grade queries or appeals or complaints. Please use mq.edu.au address for these, as we need to have an independently archived set of records. This protects both your interests and mine.
  • Office: Level 2, Australian Hearing Hub, Macquarie University.

3. Consultations

  • Internal Students: 12-1pm Mondays (after Monday class), and 4-5pm (after Friday class). I will hold a consultation in the one hour after class Weeks 1 to 7, and 9 to 12.
  • External Students (including OUA): Please message me at anytime (WhatsApp or Messenger Preferred) if you have questions about the course or the assignments. I’ll attempt to respond promptly. If we need to organise a skype/zoom/call with your project group we can do that.

4. For each week’s class

By 9am Monday (the beginning of Monday’s class) I will upload to methods101.com, and iLearn:

  • Script and slides for lecture
  • Exercises: optional weekly exercises which provide an opportunity for you to apply the concepts of this week to your group project


   What I expect of you

1. Borrow or buy the textbook

Neuman, W. L. (2013). Understanding Research: Pearson New International Edition. Harlow: Pearson Education UK.

2. Join a project group in week 1 + register it + set up Facebook Messenger chat with Nick

Find a project group (internal students we will do this in class, external students can do on the discussion chat on iLearn). Please register it (details to be provided)

3. Read the required readings each week

Internal students should read readings before coming to class, and external students before watching the lectures.

4. Do the ethics training before you start collecting data

Week 2 has compulsory ethics training. Everyone in your group needs to do this before you can start collecting data.

5. Get written ethical approval from me via email before you conduct interviews or collect surveys

I also need to approve your interview and survey questions and informed consent form before you start collecting data. Please email me these, plus your article to be replicated, and wait for my formal approval before you start collecting any data.

6. Participate in your project group

Participate and contribute to your project group fully and seriously or you will be penalised in your peer review mark. This includes coming to class (for internal students), as we will do significant project work in each class (we will do workshops at the end of each class, applying the knowledge from that week to your project).


3. Assessment Tasks

There are four assessment tasks: two exams, and two research reports

Name Weighting Due
Mid-term Exam 20% Open for 48 hours in mid-semester break (dates to TBA).
20 Questions in 30 minutes.
Pilot Study Report and Presentation
(Group Project)
30% Due at Marking Consultation (to be booked) in Week 8
Final Report and Presentation
(Group Project)
30% Due at Marking Consultation (to be booked) in Week 13
Final Exam 20% Open for 48 hours at end of Week 14 (dates TBA).
20 Questions in 30 minutes.


   Instructions for Exams/Quizes

The Mid-semester exam (20%) and Final exam (20%) are both 30 minute online exams (on iLearn). They have 20 multiple choice questions each. Exams are open for 48 hours.

The Mid-semester exam will be held during mid-semester break. Exact dates to be announced. Testing weeks 1 to 7.

The Final Exam will be held during Week 14. Exact dates to be announced. Testing weeks 1 to 13


   Instructions for Group Project

  1. Forming Groups. This is a group project. Form your own groups of 2 to 6 students in Week 1, and register via link on iLearn. If you don’t have a group, please post asking for other group members on iLearn discussion.

  2. Sample Size. Design, analyse, and present a small-scale replication of an academic study by collecting your own dataset.

    • For ‘Pilot Study’ (Due Week 8) - collect and analyse qualitative interviews (12 per group in total) Interviews must be 10 to 30 mins in length, with fieldnotes and NO RECORDING.
    • For ‘Final Report’ (Due Week 13) - collect and analyse quantitative surveys (50 respondents per group in total) Surveys must be no more than 10 questions and 5 minutes in length. Surveys must be done on Qualtrics, and analysed with SPSS.

  3. Replicate Journal Article. This study must be based on a small-scale/partial replication of a social science study which you find in a peer-reviewed academic journal article.

  4. Presentation. For week 8 and week 13, you should present:

    • 10 minute presentation, with powerpoint slides (all group members should present for equal time)

  5. Presentation Consultation. Details for presentation:

    • Internal students will present face-to-face.
    • External students will present on Skype (or Zoom).
    • Presentations will be outside class times, in ‘Marking Consultations’ of 30-60 minutes (depending on group size). Groups will book these online closer to submission date.

  6. Attachments (Turn-it-in). Bring the following attachments to presentation, and upload to iLearn via Turn-It-In:

    • A copy of the article you are replicating
    • Week 13: Dataset as SPSS file + Codebook
    • Week 8: Fieldnotes for each interview
    • 1,200 word script of your presentation, with tables and references.

  7. Sample Size Same For Big and Small Groups. Group size and sharing work:

    Sample size and project length is the same no matter how small or large your project group is (minimum size group is 2, maximum size of group is 6). Why?

    • For those who want to work in small groups, you can, but you need to do more of the work of data collection, literature review, analysis, yourself.
    • This structure rewards those who cooperate and coordinate with larger group - you get less individual work, but have to spend more time communicating and negotiating with group.
    • Learning to work in large groups is important, but it can be difficult, with costs of communication, negotiation, and compromise.

  8. Ethics. Before you start collecting data (either interviews or surveys):

    • Everyone in your group must do the online ethics training (see Week 2) and email me and the tutor a copy of your certificate of completion before you start collecting data.
    • You must email your list of questions or survey (with the informed consent form) and a copy of the article you are replicating, and wait until you get a formal email from Nick saying you can start data collection.

  9. Confirmation of Article + Topic by Week 3. By Week 3, you must confirm the article you are going to do a small scale replication of by Week 3. Please send this to Nick on Messenger or email and get his approval/confirmation that the article and topic are suitable.


   Marking Criteria for Group Project

1. Marking Rubric

  1. WRITING: Clear, straight-forward writing and verbal presentation.

  2. MOTIVATION: Identifies and justifies choice of research question.

  3. LITERATURE REVIEW: Identifies relevant previous research on the topic, and organises literature into themes based on the different explanations (theories) that answer your research question.

  4. METHOD: Clearly articulates a method to collected and analyse data to answer your research question, including:

    1. CONCEPTUALISATION & OPERATIONALISATION: articulates hypotheses (if necessary), conceptualisations of variables/concepts, and operationalisation of variables/concepts,
    2. DATA COLLECTION: Summarizes techniques for data collection, methods of ensuring ethical data collection, and methods sampling.

  5. DATA ANALYSIS: High quality data analysis that clearly analyses and presents the evidence for the main findings of your research.

  6. CONCLUSION: Summarizes findings and discusses academic and policy implications.

2. Individual & Group Marks

Group mark (50%): Half your grade will be awarded based on the quality of the total product as a whole.

Individual marks (50%): Half your grade for the group project will be awarded based on the quality of your individual contribution. This will be judged on:

  • A description of each individual’s work that is attached to be beginning of each report
  • A peer evaluation, which will be confidential and completed online after submission of each report (week 8 and 13).


Last updated on 25 February, 2020 by Dr Nicholas Harrigan (nicholas.harrigan@mq.edu.au)