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Craft of Political Research, The (Longman Classics in Political Science) (8th Edition) Paperback – February 18, 2010

ISBN-13: 978-0205791200 ISBN-10: 0205791204 Edition: 8th

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Product Details

  • Series: Longman Classics in Political Science
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Pearson; 8 edition (February 18, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0205791204
  • ISBN-13: 978-0205791200
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.5 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #443,047 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"The Craft of Political Research is just what one hopes for in an undergraduate methods course. It is more theoretically engaged than most such texts, and the conceptual discussion is non-sectarian. Marx and Duverger make an appearance; so do Mancur Olson and Anthony Downs; so do Philip Converse and Robert Putnam. Students will learn that ideas matter, not the statistical software; and they will see that theoretical narrowness is the antithesis of good science."--from Christopher H. Achen's Foreword

From the Publisher

This introduction to the conception and pursuit of a research project emphasizes the design of interesting research questions and basic problems of measurement and data analysis. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By great plains officer on July 26, 2005
Format: Paperback
I am a Master's degree student in the throes of writing my thesis. Initially, I had absolutely no idea how to go about the process until I took a class in which this book was part of the cirriculum. Shively breaks down the process step by step and prepares you for contingencies that are bound to happen along the way. Chapter two is especially useful in learning how to choose a topic and furthermore, a question from which to base a thesis.
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Format: Paperback
Shively provides and excellent primer for buddinng social scientists beginnig to conduct thier own poltical research. Shively starts at the beginning, explaining the history of political science and the numerous theories and paradigms that charaterize our field. From here he branches off into the more specific techniques of political reserch, i.e formal theory, and normative philosophy, and the particular usefulness of each approach. Building upon this base, Shively emphasizes the importance of correctly operationalizing variables, namely through validity and precision. His useful examples illustrate the differences in the concepts and why such careful consideration is imperative in political research. Additionally, Shively adequately covers the importance of case selection and briefly touches on statistical methods. All though it is impossible to give a thourogh explination of quantitiative methods in a primer, it would have been helpful for Shively to go into greater depth on the subject. As stated above, the work is an excellent primer for those beginning research. However, it is of limited use to those who are undertaking a more extensive researh task. It would serve as an excellent text for upper level undergraduate courses, graduate students may need something with a little more meat.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By AVIDRDR on November 21, 2005
Format: Paperback
This work raises salient issues and poses important questions about the political science investigative process from start to finish. The emphasis here is on squarely on political science. This would not be an appropriate text for related fields (e.g. history or sociology). While accessible to all, it would best be read after one has taken a quantitatively based statistics course, as an introduction into research where control groups are less plausible, and where data collection constraints are formidable. It also directly assails problematic points of the research process, and so rather than taking academia's methodological disposition as given, as does Creswell, it delineates to students the tradeoffs and disputes involved in forming the consensus as to how the research process is generally accepted to operate. However, to portray this text as a volume on how to do research is a bit misleading, as it is better read as a compendium of well thought out caveats to procedural outlines one can find elsewhere. Finally, it shows that this work was written for the author's students at Yale, not just merely in the quality of the writing, but in addition to the caliber of the research examples used.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Timothy E. Lewellen on August 21, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was one of the texts for a political research methods course. Good text but is perhaps overly simplified? It does a pretty good job of being concise.
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