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How to do your Social Research Project or Dissertation

How to do your Social Research Project or Dissertation (1st edn)

Tom Clark, Liam Foster, and Alan Bryman
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date: 28 September 2023

p. 494. Developing a Research Idealocked

p. 494. Developing a Research Idealocked

  • Tom Clark, Tom ClarkLecturer in Research Methods, The University of Sheffield
  • Liam FosterLiam FosterSenior Lecturer in Social Policy & Social Work, The University of Sheffield
  •  and Alan BrymanAlan BrymanProfessor of Organizational and Social Research, Formerly of The University of Leicester


Social research is concerned with developing defensible knowledge about people and all of the things that they do. This means that the landscape for social research is both wide and varied. In some cases, the research gaze will be directed by disciplinary interests, in others it will be much more open. This chapter discusses techniques that can help students identify their research interests, develop project ideas, and build a rationale for research. It also considers how research is evaluated and explores the idea of quality in research. It begins by dealing with a question that many students ask — what makes a good dissertation project? To answer this question, the idea of research quality is discussed.

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