Can be any topic
for this project, you will need to locate at least four research articles related to a subject
that you are interested in researching for future classes. The research articles do not have to be exactly
within the subject that you are researching, but they should be close. After reading the articles, you will
answer a series of questions comparing and contrasting the articles. The questions will help you analyze
and evaluate the methodology used in the articles, and your answers should be at a minimum at least
one page for each question. The articles must be from peer-reviewed academic journals. If you need
help locating peer-reviewed, academic journal articles, the PVAMU Coleman Library librarians can you
help you with this part of the process. Choose articles that are relatively recent. I do not want to place
a specific date, but sometime within the past 20 years is preferable. I may give some latitude if one
article is older than 20 years.
Two of your research articles must use quantitative methods and data.
If you are having trouble finding sociology articles related to your subject, you will want to expand your
research to fields that are related to sociology including economics, political science, psychology, urban
studies, rural sociology, anthropology, African American studies, tourism sciences, education, criminal
justice, etc. Part of the research process is not a mechanical approach to research – there is also
creativity in searching out ideas.
When looking up articles, you will try to find articles that are close to your research interests. For
example, if you are interested in studying something very specific, such as food insecurity among people
receiving public benefits (such as SNAP), you will need to find articles on food insecurity in the United
States. If you are researching something that has not been researched extensively, such as human
trafficking in rural areas, you would need to find articles related to human trafficking and articles to
crimes in rural areas (such as drug trafficking). You may not find articles that match 100% your area of
interest but try to match up articles that are as closely related as possible.
1. Write a brief description for each article. What is the title of the article? What is the subject of
the article? Explain why you chose that article and how it relates to your research subject.
Describe from which field of study that the article comes from. Does the researcher describe
where the motivation for writing the article comes from? What previous research is the article
either extending and amplifying or contradicting? This will take several paragraphs for each
2. For each article, write the research question of the article. What are the research concepts?
How are the concepts related to each other (in other words what is the cause and what is the
effect)? How are the concepts operationalized into independent and dependent variables? For
each article what is the hypothesis?
3. For each article, describe the data that the researcher(s) used. Was the data qualitative or
quantitative? Was the data primary or secondary data? If the data was primary data, how did
the researcher(s) collect the data?
4. For the two articles that use quantitative data, describe how the data are used. Where did the
researchers collect the data? What type of statistical tests did they use? How did the
researchers interpret their results in order to draw a conclusion?
5. For each article, describe the methodology that the researcher(s) used. If the research was
qualitative, did the researcher use non-participant observation? Did the researcher use
interviews? Did the researcher use participant observation? Did the researcher use focus
groups? Please describe the data collection method that the different researcher(s) used. If the
researcher article used quantitative methods, what methods did he or she use? Why did the
researchers use the methodology that they used in the article (if stated)? For at least one of the
articles, state which methodology you would have modified or changed altogether. For the one
article you choose to write about changing the methodology, describe what you would have
done differently and why.
6. How did the researchers analyze the data? For each article, summarize the discussion and
analysis of the study. Do the researchers acknowledge limitations or specific conditions to their
findings? For example, if the researchers conducted a case study, how do they interpret their
findings? Do they apply beyond the specific case or not? If so, how? Also, do the researchers
conclude by stating what next steps future research should take? If so, what is it?
7. Based on your reading and analysis of the three articles, how would you do your research in
your chosen subject? Describe your research question and concepts modeling your answer
after the articles you have studied. How would you operationalize your concepts? What
methodology would you use given a limited budget in both time and money, as well as limited
access. What methodology would you use given a sizeable budget in both time and money, as
well as access to people and places that might otherwise be difficult to access (in other words,
the most ideal research conditions possible, access to interviews with almost anybody, etc.).
Finally, what kind of data would you gather and why?