Course Name : Research Methods of Religious Studies
Course Code : SPSAG6206
Units : 3
Research Methods in Religious Studies aims not just to introduce students to methodological techniques, but to engage them in critically analyzing those techniques in terms of the historical development of social scientific research, and in relation to ethical considerations. This class seeks not just to teach methodology, but to think about how methodological choices reflect certain trends theoretical thought, shape the character of given research project, and interact with cultural contexts. In developing early drafts of their research proposals, students are encouraged to critically examine their methodological options: does the methodology they want to employ in the field have a logical connection to their theoretical interests? Are there certain cultural or contextual constraints in the field that might make a given methodology unfeasible or unethical? Will applying certain methodologies lead to new research questions or a new theoretical approach to the topics they are interested in? Throughout the course students are asked to complete a series of worksheets about their proposed research topic that challenges them to make a detailed analysis of the logic and feasibility of their research plan and proposed methodology.