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Doctoral Seminar in Research Methods in Applied Medical Anthropology II

East Baltimore
2nd term
International Health
4 credits
Academic Year:
2022 - 2023
Instruction Method:
Class Times:
  • Tu Th,  1:30 - 3:20pm
Auditors Allowed:
Undergrads Allowed:
Grading Restriction:
Letter Grade or Pass/Fail
Course Instructor:
Svea Closser



Discusses how to construct robust research designs, including the appropriate combinations of methods, both qualitative and quantitative, for particular research questions; and critical discussions of sampling and bias in qualitative studies. Covers varied methods of the management and analysis of qualitative data, including grounded theory, narrative analysis, and thematic analysis, as well as the art of ethnography: writing culture. Also covers emerging topics in the anthropology of global health, including critical studies of epidemiological data production and Global Health Institutions.

Learning Objectives:

Upon successfully completing this course, students will be able to:

  1. Describe appropriate techniques for sampling and minimizing bias in the qualitative research context, and articulate why these techniques are very different from those appropriately used in quantitative research
  2. Integrate medical anthropological theories of politics, power relations, and knowledge production into the framing of research questions and the analysis of results
  3. Explain Michael Crotty's framework for the research process (epistemology, theoretical framework, methodology, method), and make the distinction between epistemology and theoretical framework, and between methodology and method
  4. Describe types of research questions for which structured observation, free listing, and pile sorts would be appropriate (and not appropriate)
  5. Design research that integrates qualitative and quantitative approaches to effectively answer specific questions
  6. Evaluate strengths and weaknesses of a highly systematic approach to the management and analysis of textual data including translation, back-translation and double-coding of interview transcripts
  7. Integrate ethnographic writing techniques into public health articles
  8. Design a theoretically-grounded research study on social, cultural, and behavioral aspects of health, differentiating between qualitative and quantitative designs
  9. Describe the strengths, weaknesses, and variations in practice for the range of qualitative methods used in public health, including participant observation, interviews, focus groups, and content analysis; and design research that uses these methods appropriately and to their best advantage
Methods of Assessment:

This course is evaluated as follows:

  • 25% Discussion
  • 40% Participation
  • 25% Final Project
  • 10% Peer-feedback

Instructor Consent:

Consent required for some students

Consent Note:

If prerequisite is not met

For consent, contact: