The Workshop in Methods (WIM) was created in 2009 with the mission of providing introductory education and training in sophisticated research methods to graduate students and faculty in the social sciences at Indiana University. The initial idea for WIM began with Scott Long, who discussed his vision with Dr. William Alex Pridemore. Pridemore created WIM and directed the series until 2013, when the Social Science Research Commons began organizing the series.
Browse workshops from the 2013-2014 academic year below. All 2013-2014 workshop videos have also been compiled in a playlist on Media Collections Online. You may also browse videos from all years in the full Workshop in Methods collection on Media Collections Online, and access other materials, such as presentation slides, through the Workshop in Methods collection on IUScholarWorks.
Friday, September 27, 2013
Your Statistical Toolbelt
2:00-4:00pm, Social Science Research Commons Grand Hall (Woodburn Hall 200)
This workshop will give an overview of how to identify what types of data analysis tools to use for a project, along with basic “DIY” instructions. We will discuss the most common analysis tools for describing your data and performing significance tests (ANOVA, Regression, Correlation, Chi-square, etc), and how they should be selected based on the type of data and the type of research question you have. We will spend the first hour outlining “what analysis to use when” and the second hour going through examples in SPSS software.
Stephanie Dickinson is a senior consultant at the Indiana Statistical Consulting Center.
Friday, October 11, 2013
Introduction to R
1:30-4:00pm, Social Science Research Commons Grand Hall (Woodburn Hall 200)
R is a free statistical programming language that provides many powerful tools for visualizing and analyzing data. R is used by statisticians around the world and is becoming increasingly popular in a variety of quantitative disciplines. R is used exclusively with programming syntax (i.e. no “point-and-click” interface) and therefore has a steep learning curve for new programmers. This two and a half hour workshop will introduce the fundamentals of R. Participants will become familiar with the R user environment, basic data structures, and syntax. Methods for creating and importing data files and downloading and using additional packages will be covered, along with the basic descriptive statistic, plots, and elementary statistical tests.
Thomas Jackson is a senior consultant at the Indiana Statistical Consulting Center.
Friday, October 25, 2013
Principles of Workflow in Data Analysis
Dr. J. Scott Long
1:30-3:00pm, Social Science Research Commons Grand Hall (Woodburn Hall 200)
The workflow of data analysis encompasses the entire process of scientific research: Planning, documenting, and organizing your work; creating, labeling, naming, and verifying variables; performing and presenting statistical analyses; preserving your work; and (perhaps, most important) producing replicable results. Most of our work in statistics classes focuses on estimating and interpreting models. In most “real world” research projects, these activities involve less than 10% of the total work. Professor Long’s talk is about the other 90% of the work. An efficient workflow saves time, introduces greater reliability into the steps of the analysis, and generates replicable results.
Dr. Longis Distinguished Professor and Chancellor’s Professor of Sociology and Statistics at Indiana University.
Friday, November 8, 2013
Introduction to Questionnaire Design
Dr. Stacey Giroux, Lilian Yahng, and Ashley Bowers
2:00-3:30pm, Social Science Research Commons Grand Hall (Woodburn Hall 200)
A well-designed and tested survey questionnaire is one of the most powerful tools that researchers in education, health, business and public policy, and the social sciences have to obtain accurate and reliable measurements of a wide range of attitudes, opinions, beliefs, and behaviors. With technological advances in how data are captured, exciting new horizons for survey measurement and assessment of the quality of those measurements are emerging. In this workshop, we review best practices in the development and testing of survey questionnaires that may be administered using web, mail, telephone and/or face-to-face data collection methods. We will provide numerous practical examples of how to design and evaluate survey questions and how to implement commonly used testing procedures, including in-depth cognitive interviews and field pretests.
Dr. Stacey Giroux is Senior Study Director at IU’s Center for Survey Research and Adjunct Faculty in Anthropology. Lilian Yahng is Director of R&D and the Research Laboratory at IU’s Center for Survey Research. Ashley Bowers is Director of IU’s Center for Survey Research and a clinical assistant professor in the School of Public and Environmental Affairs.
Tuesday, December 3, 2013
Using the Catalist Database to Study Political Participation
Dr. Bernard Fraga
2:30-4:00pm, Social Science Research Commons Grand Hall (Woodburn Hall 200)
This workshop will give an overview of the data available from Catalist, LLC, a data vendor that aggregates, cleans, and repackages individual-level information on voter registration and voter turnout. Indiana University affiliates may now access the online database through the support of the College of Arts and Sciences and the Social Science Research Commons. Total, Catalist has records for over 250 million voting-age U.S. residents, and thus serves as the leading data vendor to high profile, “big data”-driven political campaigns. We will discuss the various geographic, demographic, and political information that can be extracted from the database, and how you can obtain tabular data of interest from the browser-based interface. A series of examples will demonstrate how the Catalist data can enhance our understanding of participation in American politics.
Dr. Fraga is an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Indiana University. He specializes in the areas of American electoral politics, institutions, and political behavior.