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Social Research and Reflexive Writing (ARTS90002)

Graduate courseworkPoints: 6.25On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelGraduate coursework
Subject codeARTS90002
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

This subject will cover the following topics:

1) Writing evidence: How does one write about the acquisition and accumulation of data? What are social and cultural realities? How crucial are notions of subjectivity, experience, enmeshment and perspective in making the social and the cultural different from the ‘natural’ or the ‘physical’? Are there differences between social and cultural realities and can they be approached in the same way? How does one write about the different modes of relating to the world as a researcher and what are their ramifications on what one produces as accounts of reality?

2) Writing analysis: How does one write an analysis of one’s research experience? What does it mean to be rigorous when writing about data? What do explaining, deducing, providing proof, exemplifying mean as writing strategies in a PhD context.

3) Writing Theory: How and why should one read theory? How does one integrate it in one’s work? Evaluating the usefulness of a theoretical perspective? How to make theory speak to social and cultural realities and vice versa. What does critiquing means? How to think with a multiplicity of theories. How to develop one’s own theories.

Intended learning outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should have:

  • an ability to think through the underlying assumptions and the consequences of choosing words, phrases, concepts and theories when writing a PhD;
  • an ability to reflect upon their own research work in relation to the content of the module; and
  • enhanced engagement with leading-edge research in particular areas of the Humanities and Social Sciences today.

Generic skills

The subjects will contribute, through teaching and discussion with academic staff and peers, to developing skills and capacities including those identified in the University-defined Graduate Attributes for the PhD, in particular:

  • the capacity to contextualise research within an international corpus of specialist knowledge;
  • an advanced ability to engage in critical reflection, synthesis and evaluation of research-based and scholarly literature; and
  • an advanced understanding of key disciplinary and multi-disciplinary norms and perspectives relevant to the field.

Last updated: 11 November 2018