Guide to Methods for Students of Political Science
- Binding: Paperback
- Author: Stephen Van Evera
- Publish Date: 1997-09-04
Stephen Van Evera greeted new graduate students at MIT with a commonsense introduction to qualitative methods in the social sciences. His helpful hints, always warmly received, grew from a handful of memos to an underground classic primer. That primer evolved into a book of how-to information about graduate study, which is essential reading for graduate students and undergraduates in political science, sociology, anthropology, economics, and history - and for their advisers.
-How should we frame, assess, and apply theories in the social sciences? I am unpersuaded by the view that the prime rules of scientific method should differ between hard science and social science. Science is science.
-A section on case studies shows novices the ropes.
-Van Evera contends the realm of dissertations is often defined too narrowly âMaking and testing theories are not the only games in town. . . . If everyone makes and tests theories but no one ever uses them, then what are they for?
-In Helpful Hints on Writing a Political Science Ph.D. Dissertation, Van Evera focuses on presentation, and on broader issues of academic strategy and tactics.
-Van Evera asks how political scientists should work together as a community. âAll institutions and professions that face weak accountability need inner ethical rudders that define their obligations in order to stay on course.