Officially approved as:
Degree Dependent: Yes
Total Credit Hours: 18 beyond 3 hour prerequisite
Time to Completion: 24 months
Certificate Description: Academic disciplines ranging from sociology, psychology, education, agricultural sciences, communication and media studies are increasingly turning to new and complex forms of research. Qualitative research methodologies, which utilize techniques such as interviews, focus groups, document analysis, discourse analysis, and multi- modal analysis, offer new strategies for scholarship and research that contribute greatly to the body of professional and academic research. The purpose of the certificate is to prepare future scholars in the theory, design, and implementation of qualitative research. The program emphasizes the following core principles about research.
• Any research inquiry begins first from an epistemological and theoretical stance held by the researcher regardless of how explicit these stances may be. Thus a scholar’s work always stem from her or his research identit(ies).
• Qualitative research includes a relationship between the researcher and the researched, so that the researcher must always interrogate her or his influence in the process of conducting research.
• One’s research questions always dictate the specific methodology and methods to be used in the study.
• Rigor in one’s research and implementation is the hallmark of any research study that proposes to contribute to the body of knowledge in one’s field.