Qualitative Research in Science and Mathematics Education

SCED 598
Taught in
Fall 2006
Course Level
Lifelong Support

Course Description

SCED 598 is meant to provide students with theoretical and conceptual approaches in conducting a qualitative research, particularly in educational settings concentrated on science and/or mathematics education. While the theoretical underpinnings of qualitative research are the focus of the course, the issues being researched will be related to those educational areas in practice. The scope of the class includes traditions of qualitative research, theoretical underpinnings, research design, fieldwork, qualitative data collection and analysis, writing the findings up, and discussions on applied qualitative research for education.

Course Goals

Students will:

  • demonstrate an understanding of basic principles and purposes of qualitative research.
  • demonstrate an ability to construct effective qualitative data (e.g., field notes, interview transcripts).
  • demonstrate an ability to analyze and interpret qualitative data.
  • be able to conduct a field study that includes data collection, analysis, and reporting of findings in a presentation and in an academic writing.
  • be able to evaluate and critique research reports and publications.
  • demonstrate an ability to integrate existing literature into research projects.
  • demonstrate knowledge of ethical and unethical practices in qualitative research.

Course Expectations

This is not a lecture class and information cannot be simply obtained by “getting the notes” from a classmate. You are to read the assignments before coming to class and be ready for discussion. Every class discussion will be lead by one student who will be announced at the course web site. Therefore, attendance is expected and you are to be professional in your class participation. Professionalism includes, but is not limited to, such things as excellence in class assignments, constructive class participation, being a positive contributor to group work, taking advantage of opportunities to broaden personal knowledge and skills, and going beyond the minimum in all your work and interactions.