Course Descriptions

TitleInternational Research

International research has evolved tremendously over the last few decades from its early anthropological roots to present day cross-cultural and comparative studies. In this class, we will trace this historical path and examine the factors that have made this research a robust and exciting area of inquiry. We will examine prior research and investigate the methodological tensions and salient issues that support and/or threaten the work.

Studying “the other” and conducting cross-national comparisons are highly complex in nature. This class will take the position that researchers must possess both a micro and macro lenses in their approach and analysis. It will support a very specific philosophy of qualitative inquiry and build on the following underlying principles: first, that all meaning is actually a contested site of multiple practices. The social world in all its cultural and structural diversity is created and re-created through interaction and that it is up to the researcher to understand the meaning that individuals give to their activity. Second, that all activity is socially constructed. The course will focus on the centrality of culture as an analytic concept while orienting researchers with methodological pointers toward interaction. And third, that people make sense of their lives based on the broader contexts in which they are embedded. To that end we will discuss the ways that multiple contexts inform and shape the lives of those we study.

All students will be required to have taken a qualitative research class prior to enrollment. The class is designed to help students meet their international requirement. They will engage in an individual research project that has an international focus. Students will design a study, showing clear evidence that the content learned in this class has informed their work code, analyze data, and produce a journal length article.

This course is approved by the Leadership Studies faculty to meet the PhD Research Requirement.  

SyllabusPDF document (194.1 KB)
First NameAnne
Last NameRanderson