Sociological research is a systemmethodological, methodological and organizational-technical procedures, which are united by one common goal: obtaining objective accurate data about a particular social phenomenon. To obtain more accurate data, sociological research methods are used. They are specific techniques, methods, approaches and tools.
Methods of sociological research
· General scientific methods of cognition. This is an axiomatic, idiographic, comparative-historical methods, a method of hypotheses, analysis, modeling, idealization, deduction, induction, abduction, analogy, etc.
Theoretical methods of constructing a parahydmal character. This is Durkheim's method, the Bourdieu method, the Bacon method, the Descartes method, and so on.
· Instrumental learning approachessocial phenomena. This is a survey, a focus group method, a biographical method, a simulation of social processes, an analysis of social systems and social networks, etc.
· Instrumental approaches to such a procedure as collection of empirical data. This is a survey, an analysis of documents, interviews, observation, etc.
· Separate data collection techniques, includingnumber and methods of measurement. The Thurstone scale, the scale of summary estimates, the method of paired comparisons, a sealed booklet, projective methods, etc. Methods of cognitive analysis can be categorized here as well.
· Types of data analysis. This, for example, typological analysis, factor analysis, causal analysis.
· Methods of mathematical formalization, inincluding data analysis methods (cluster analysis, discriminant analysis, descriptive statistics), statistical hypotheses and mathematical modeling.
· Methods for analyzing textual information. This is a conversion analysis, content analysis, transaction analysis, discourse analysis, etc.
Methods of sociological research are selecteddepending on the content of the problem studied. For example, in empirical studies that rely on mass demand, you will need a cognitive analysis of the questionnaire, as well as the following methods: forming a sample, collecting empirical data, multidimensional mathematical analysis, discriminant statistics, testing statistical hypotheses. Methods of sociological research should be carefully selected. A similar procedure consists in understanding the adequacy and interdependence of methods. In order for research to be as reliable as possible, a procedure for methodical triangulation is often used, which involves the use of several methods at the same time to study a social phenomenon.
Structure and process of sociological research
The study of any area is conducted according to a pre-planned plan and has its own structure. The main stages of sociological research can be described as follows:
1. Preparation for research: drawing up a plan, developing tools (for example, questions for interviews, questionnaires).
2. Collection of primary information (interviewing, questionnaires).
3. Processing of the received data.
4. Analysis of the data obtained, summarizing the research.
It should be noted that all stagessociological research is a structure in which all elements are closely interrelated. This means that you can not proceed to the next stage if the previous stage is performed poorly, not completely. And all because the data obtained at one stage is the basis for the subsequent stages. Particular attention should be given to the preparation phase, since the reliability of the data will depend on how much the entire study will be considered.