Jamie BaxterWestern Social Science


Meeting Schedule

Thursdays  9:30am- 12:30pm  SSC 5220

W Date Topic  Reading Student Seminar Facilitator/Leaders
1 Jan. 9  Organizational Class Meeting please fill out this survey students will select a presentation session
2 Jan. 16  Paradigms P1 Opener
Ch1, Ch2
Cliff, Lydia
3 Jan. 23  NO CLASS - use time to pick a paper topic?
4 Jan. 30  Feminist Approaches/Standpoint Methodology Ch3, readings Van, Houda
5 Feb. 6  Mixed Methods  Ch4, Ch5 Mark, Emily A
6 Feb. 13  In-Depth Interviewing Ch9, readings Caren, Michael
8 Feb. 27  Participatory Action Research  readings Kate, Jen
9 Mar. 6  Ethnography and Grounded Theory  Ch20, Ch23, Prus 1997 Emily M, Brittany
10 Mar 13  Discourse and Text Analysis P3 Opener,
Ch15, reading
John, James
11 Mar. 20  Qualitative Rigour and the Role for "Counting"?
(YES, you still need to do the readings for this week!)
(new assignment inlieu of weekly critical summary)
12 Mar. 27  Interpretation, Coding and Computer-Assisted Data Analysis Ch25, reading Jamie
13 Apr. 3  Ethics  Ch24, readings Sarah, Germaine
No lecture Jan 31, 2013.

Course Description

This course introduces students to epistemological issues that distinguish qualitative from quantitative methods and provides an overview of several of the main types of qualitative research methods. It also considers ethical issues and data analysis and management challenges that are associated with qualitative research. Students will use the knowledge that they gain in this course to write a research paper.

May I Take This Course? Cap is 18 Students

Due to an arrangement between Geography and Sociology - students from those departments are allowed to sign up first (until about mid Dec.) then the course opens up further to those from other departments. If you are a Geographer or Sociologist, please sign up as soon as possible so I know the course enrolment. If you are interested in the course and are outside of these two departments contact me and ask me to put you on the waiting list. Check the news section for updates on this topic.


Classes are led by student facilitators each week and are based on the assigned readings. The group of facilitators can organize the class discussion any way they like which might include: a formal summary of the readings, a Powerpoint or similar presentation, a handout, and excercise, questions to stimulate discussion.


Lecture: Thursday, 3 hours, 9:30 - 12:30, SSC 5220


Paper - 45%

Seminar Presenation - 30%

Participation/Weekly Assignments - 25%

For a full description of assignments and exams please click here.


Text: Nagy Hesse-Biber, S. and Leavy, P. 2004. Approaches to Qualitative Research: A reader on Theory and Practice. Oxford University Press. (available through online sellers)

Additional readings: Some sessions will include additional readings (see schedule below). Most of these readings are available through journals to which UWO has free on-line subscriptions, but we will have space in the Resources section of Owl to share these readings too.

Substitute readings?: If you have a reading you would like to substitute into your session, please contact me to discuss at least a week ahead of your session. In terms of the amount of reading each week, I think we would prefer in most instances to replace an existing reading, rather than add more?

University Policies

Accommodation for Illness, Family Death etc.

For UWO Policy on Accommodation for Medical Illness and a downloadable SMC see:


Downloadable Student Medical Certificate (SMC): http://www.uwo.ca/univsec/pdf/academic_policies/appeals/medicalform_15JUN.pdf

Students seeking academic accommodation on medical grounds for any missed graded course components must apply to the Academic Counselling office of their home Faculty and provide documentation. Academic accommodation cannot be granted by the instructor or department.

And now some messages from our lawyers...

Mental Illness

If you or someone you know is experiencing distress, there are several resources here at Western to assist you. Please visit http://www.uwo.ca/uwocom/mentalhealth/ for more information on these resources and on mental health.


The Department of Geography has a zero tolerance policy towards plagiarism. If a student commits plagiarism, the instructor will assign a grade of zero to the assignment. A second instance of plagiarism is regarded as a scholastic offense and will be dealt with according to The University of Western Ontario policy for Scholastic offenses - more on our policy on plagiarism via this link. The most common offense is failing to cite properly - if you quote directly, cite the author! You do not get the benefit of the doubt (you are not presumed innocent until proven guilty) when such offenses are committed. That is, the burden of proof is reversed. Can you prove "it was an accident" (this is a rhetorical question)?

The following is an excerpt from the university secretariat: Scholastic offences are taken seriously and students are directed to read the appropriate policy, specifically, the definition of what constitutes a Scholastic Offence, at the following Web site: http://www.uwo.ca/univsec/pdf/academic_policies/appeals/scholastic_discipline_undergrad.pdf

Not citing the work of others is generally the main violation - ignorance is no excuse! See next...


Unfortunately turnitin has "caught" several offenders in my classes, please do not be the next one - it is awkward for everyone involved. If you do original work and write and cite properly you have nothing to worry about. The university has provided this mandatory wording: "All required papers may be subject to submission for textual similarity review to the commercial plagiarism detection software under license to the University for the detection of plagiarism. All papers submitted will be included as source documents in the reference database for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of papers subsequently submitted to the system. Use of the service is subject to the licensing agreement, currently between The University of Western Ontario and Turnitin.com"

Once logged in to Turnitin copy the id and pass below to the appropriate fields at the Turnitin website.

1. Login to turnitin - register if you do not have an account.

2. Join the course with the following credentials:

TA "All Students" ID: 10691701
"All Students" password: Reed