Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Quantitative Research

LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course



DESCRIPTION This study-unit provides a comprehensive tuition in quantitative research methods with a specialist focus on psychological research and its application to social issues. The study-unit will introduce students to operationalization procedures for quantitative research in psychology, with due appreciation of general research methods principles for social psychology.

Students will start by learning epistemological issues underpinning nomothetic research that mark the hypothetico-deductive model that prevails in the discipline and that sustain a positivist approach to the study of social psychological phenomena. Students will then proceed to study the basic principles of quantitative research, such as levels of measurement, sampling issues and standardization. Following these, students will first proceed to learn bivariate analysis, such as t-tests, chi-square tests, ANOVA, correlation and linear regression. Thereafter, students will proceed to study a number of multivariate quantitative techniques, such as multiple regression, logistic regression, correspondence analysis, MANOVA, factor analysis, and other methods such as Multi-Dimensional Scaling and Hierarchical Cluster Analysis that constitute the standard analytical procedures for the discipline.

Study-unit Aims:

The study-unit aims to teach students a range of quantitative data analysis methods that serve in conducting psychological research concerning social psychological issues. The study-unit aims to introduce students to quantitative methods in general, starting from basic principles, to then proceed to more commonly utilized procedures indicated for psychological research. This study-unit aims to provide students with the knowledge to consume quantitative psychological research at any level, and with the skills to undertake quantitative research in addressing social psychological issues.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- demonstrate knowledge of the processes of conceptualization and operationalization in psychological research by translating theoretical hypotheses into statistical hypotheses;
- identify and use statistical tests to determine the presence and extent of influence of independent variables on dependent variables;
- identify evidence and proffer a critical evaluation of its quantification in drawing conclusions from psychological research and the outcome of statistical tests;
- assess whether the evidence presented to support psychology theory is adequate, articulate the limitations of quantitative procedures and offer empirical remedies delineating how limitations can be addressed.

2. Skills
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- formulate psychological research questions in quantitative terms and operationalize variables in ways that lend themselves to quantitative data analysis;
- carry out statistical tests to test statistical hypotheses by select the right statistical tests indicated for the study of different variables;
- draw correct and relevant conclusions from statistical tests;
- formulate research proposals with due consideration to the merits of quantitative research and articulate the right data analysis procedure for addressing specific research concerns.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

Main Texts

- Field, A. (2009). Discovering Statistics using SPSS. London: Sage.
- Gravetter, F.J., & Wallnau, L.B. (2004). Statistics for the Behavioral Sciences. Boston, MA: Wadsworth.
- Agresti, A., & Finlay, B. (2013). Statistical methods for the social sciences. London, Pearson.
- Coolican, H. (2014). Research methods and statistics in psychology. Oxford: Psychology Press.

Supplementary Readings

- Sammut, G., Foster, J., Salvatore, S., & Andrisano-Ruggieri, R. (2017). Methods of Psychological Intervention. Yearbook of Idiographic Science (Vol. VII). Charlotte, NC: Information Age.
- Dunteman, G.H., & Moon-Ho, R. (2006) An introduction to generalized linear models. London: Sage.
- Ostrom, C.W. (1990). Time series analysis: regression techniques. London: Sage.
- Lewis-Beck, M.S. (1980). Applied regression: an introduction. London: Sage.
- Kline, P. (1994). An easy guide to factor analysis. London: Routledge.
- Byrne, B.M. (2001). Structural equation modelling with AMOS: basic concepts, applications and programming. London: Lawrence Erlbaum.
- Kline, R.B. (2011). Principles and practices of structural equation modeling. New York: Guilford.
- Maxwell, Scott E.; Lau, Michael Y.; Howard, George S. "Is psychology suffering from a replication crisis? What does "failure to replicate" really mean?". American Psychologist. 70 (6): 487–498.
- Lindsay, D.S. (2015). "Replication in Psychological Science". Psychological Science. 26(12), 1827-1832.


- Psychological Science.
- Frontiers in Psychology.
- Integrative Psychological and Behavioral Science.
- Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour.


Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment SEM2 Yes 100%


The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.