How does one formulate the “right” questions? What are the ways and means of information retrieval, processing, and organization? How does one summarize and articulate the information or "research results" in a lucid manner? All of these are important questions that this course will help you address. Students of communication studies need to develop a strong understanding of and ability to use research methods as it is a practical and important skill that will be required in further studies, internships and future professional positions.
This course will provide an overview of research methods used in communication with a specific focus on content analysis. Content Analysis is the systematic and objective analysis of message characteristics and is one of the fastest growing methods used in communication research. It is a powerful tool because it enables one to examine a wide ranging set of social and cultural patterns in communication that are often subtle or difficult to detect through other means. While outlining commonly used communication research methods, this course will provide an overview of the potential and the challenges of conducting content analyses, as well as the specific procedures relevant to carrying out this type of research so that you will be able to design and execute such research independently.