BMPA5055 - Research Methods for the Social Sciences


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: Assignment
Grade: Letters

Evaluation form Weighting Duration Examination aids Grade deviation
Assignment 100/100

Course content

The students must acquire basic insight into the scientific method and academic writing, so that they with a critical analytical attitude can assemble and make use of knowledge from the different core subjects in an analysis of social economic themes and management challenges in the public sector. Throughout the course they will get an introduction to both qualitative and quantitative methods – with the purpose of designing an independent study – and gain understanding of how they can apply methodological tools that are used in social science disciplines. The course forms the basis for the method being used in the master thesis.
• Qualitative methods
• Quantitative methods
• Measuring problems and exploration design
• Gathering of data
• Analysis and interpretation of data
• Work with the assignment in methods

Learning outcome

The student:
- The student has knowledge of both qualitative and quantitative social science methods
- Must be able to choose design and method that suits the research question
- Must have knowledge about both qualitative and quantitative data processing
- Must have basic understanding of methods and knowledge about development of methods

The student:
- Must be able to design a clear and fruitful research questions
- Must be able to connect research question, theory and relevant empirics
- Will be used to apply the statistical tool SPSS
- Will be able to systematically present own empirical data
- Will be able to perform a critical and solid analysis

General knowledge
The student:
- Must be able to apply knowledge of methods and skills both in self-learning and in exercising of skills
- Must be able to present phenomena and facts from several professional point of views and perspectives

Learning methods and activities

The students will through lectures, group work, and review of cases gain a good foundation for acquirement of knowledge. It is presupposed that the students through self-study acquire the curriculum. In some of the gatherings we will use the statistical programme SPSS as an aid in statistical analysis.

Compulsory assignments

  • Innlevering av prosjektskisse

Further on evaluation

MANDATORY WORK REQUIREMENTS: Research report is mandatory. 70% participation is required.

EVALUATION:Assignments can be written individually or in groups of two.

The course is only available for students at the study program Master of Public Administration.

Specific conditions

Exam registration requires that class registration is approved in the same semester. Compulsory activities from previous semester may be approved by the department.

Admission to a programme of study is required:
Public Administration (ØAMPA3)

Required previous knowledge

None except required admission to the program.

Course materials

Readings (books)
Moses, Jonathon W. & Torbjørn L. Knutsen (2019) Ways of Knowing: Competing Methodologies in Social and Political Research, 3rd ed. New York: Palgrave MacMillan. Kap. 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 (197 s.).
Ringdal, Kristen (2018) Enhet og mangfold: Samfunnsvitenskapelig forskning og kvantitativ metode, 4. utgave. Bergen: Fagbokforlaget. Kap. 1, 2, 5, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 og 19 (260 s.).
Tjora, Aksel (2017) Kvalitative forskningsmetoder i praksis, 3. utg. Oslo: Gyldendal Akademisk (285 s.).
readings (articles) (available in Blackboard)
Kjelstadli, Knut (1997) «Å analysere skriftlige kilder» i Erik Fossåskaret, Otto L. Fuglestad & Tor H. Aase (red.) Metodisk feltarbeid: produksjon og tolkning av kvalitative data. Oslo: Universitetsforlaget: 207–233 (25 s.).
Support literature
Johannessen, Asbjørn (2009) Introduksjon til SPSS, 4. utgave. Oslo: Abstrakt
Eikemo, Terje A. & Tommy H. Clausen (2012) Kvantitativ analyse med SPSS: En praktisk innføring i kvantitative analyseteknikker. Trondheim: Tapir.

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
BMPA5062 7.5 01.01.2018
More on the course



Version: A
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 2
Teaching semester:  AUTUMN 2020

Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2021

Language of instruction: Norwegian

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Economics and Administration
Contact information
Course coordinator: Lecturer(s):

Department with academic responsibility
NTNU Business School



Examination arrangement: Assignment

Term Status code Evaluation form Weighting Examination aids Date Time Digital exam Room *
Autumn ORD Assignment 100/100
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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