What is /sci/'s opinion on qualitative research?
I used to think that it was incredibly weak and the reason why people (unfairly) thought of social science as being soft and non-scientific. However I'm currently doing an MSc at a university where they have a strong tradition of qualitative research and they've pushed it pretty hard, and I can now see that it has some value and can answer some questions that quantitative research can't. If I do a PhD, I might look to do it using qualitative methods because it seems easier and more interesting. What do you think?
Graduate level econ at a good school is nice
Many of them have undergrads in math
Your typical undergrad "economist" is dumb as a rock though ("why must I learn calculus? waaah waaah")
I think sociologists are notorious for using qualitative research incorrectly too. I might be biased because I've never studied it, but it seems far too political and opinion-based to be called a science.
I study psychology which is often called a social science, and I'd definitely say that psychology is a science. That said, there's definitely a lot of bad science within psychology, particularly when it comes to social psychology.
I think this is because a lot of social psychologists seem to have an agenda, just like how economists can fiddle with numbers and equations to push their view. There is no social agenda when it comes to, for instance, studying working memory or perception. What kind of psych research do you do?
Yeah that's definitely true. I started to realise it during my undergrad after reading Pinker's Blank Slate (argues that human nature exists), and then attending lectures from left-leaning academics who were teaching the complete opposite (i.e. human nature barely exists). Looking into the research in a bit more depth showed me that a lot of the time, the studies themselves are very weak and/or the findings from the paper don't actually lead to the conclusions that I was taught, yet it was being taught to us as if it were completely factual and that the opposite side of the argument didn't exist. I was pretty annoyed by this because at that age you're obviously pretty impressionable and tend to believe exactly what your professors are telling you (they're far more qualified after all).
My postgrad in Sport & Exercise Psychology, but I actually couldn't care less about working in sport, and am more interested in doing research investigating how sport psychology principles can be applied in everyday life, and how this might promote more positive experiences in life and protect against things like depression. Not sure yet whether I'll try to do a PhD or try and get a job in business for a few years instead - to be honest I'm fed up with working hard yet being constantly poor.
post a paper that you think exemplifies qualitative research because i don't think even the softest of soft science papers get published without at least some statistical methods in them
mathematics and mathematical modelling are seen as the de facto standard in all academic fields that actually strives to describe and create predictive models of natural phenomenon, the rest are things like history and such where it's more about fact collecting