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For this assignment, all you have to do is to select a topic, write an introduction, formulate a research question (see examples above) and a hypothesis. Keep it simple! Then, you will also review thr
For this assignment, all you have to do is to select a topic, write an introduction, formulate a research question (see examples above) and a hypothesis. Keep it simple! Then, you will also review three different articles related to your topic.
- Assignments should be between 2 to 4 pages long, not including the references. I encourage you to use APA style for your citations.
- For this project, you are not expected to collect your own data. You will complete your research project using the Latinobarómetro 2015 dataset.
-The Latinobarómetro is a public opinion survey carried out in 18 countries in Latin America. It asks residents about a wide array of topics, from their views on democracy and politics to their victimization experiences and fear of crime. More information about this study is available here.
- You should carefully read the survey questionnaire and select one country for your study. Please be aware that the survey has already been conducted and that the dataset with the completed answers is being provided to you. The questionnaire shows you what was asked in this study and thus what information is available to you. The questions that are included in the questionnaire are the same that you will find in the dataset. You can use the short version of the questionnaire, which contains a selection of questions that may relate more directly to your research.
- Defining a Research Problem and a Research Question. In this assignment, you are expected to take the first steps involved in a research project. The first step is to select a country of study. You can select any of the 18 countries included in the study, with the exception of Uruguay. You are going to answer your question for the population in that country. Then, you will select a topic of your interest and come up with an idea for your research. For your research project you should select one of these two topics:
1. Fear/perceived risk of crime
-Once you pick a topic, you will define a research problem. From this idea you will elaborate your research question. This is the gap in knowledge that you will intend to fill through your research. In simple terms, the research question summarizes what you are going to ask to your data and seek to answer through your analyses for the specific country. Coming up with a research problem and a research question is a very challenging task, there are innumerable topics and issues that would be interesting to know about. However, it is important to take into consideration the practical constraints that you face. In particular, you should assess how feasible it is for you to provide an answer to your question using a scientific approach. Generally, this comes to thinking about your data. In this case, the dataset is provided to you. You are not collecting your own data. Because you are not collecting your own data, you should select a research question that can be answered through the existing data. The dataset provided allows you to investigate different issues within the two topics proposed. It is important that you read carefully the questionnaire and select a research question that you can answer with your data. Remember, the questionnaire gives you information about the dataset you are using and the data it contains. In the dataset, you will find the information about the answers provided by the people that were interviewed in the study. Reading the questionnaire allows you to think about the data you have and the variables you can use for your analysis.
Here are some examples of research questions:
Are women more likely to be victimized than men?
You will use information from Q60ST and S12 from the questionnaire to answer this
Does fear of crime vary by age?
You will use information from Q57ST and S13
Is there a relationship between trust in police and fear of crime?
You will use information from Q57ST and Q16STGBS.B
Is there a relationship between social class and victimization?
You will use information from Q60ST and S6
Is there any relationship between victimization and fear of crime?
You will use information from Q60ST and Q57ST
Conducting a literature review. When conducting research, you are supposed to review the previous literature on the topic you are studying and see what has been found about it by previous research. You will use previous research to inform your own and to get ideas of what you may encounter. However, keep in mind that the purpose of the literature review is not to provide an answer to your question. You will use previous findings to formulate your hypothesis but not to conclude about your topic. Remember that is not an essay but a research project! In short, you will use previous research as a way to inform your current research. Keep in mind that your literature review does not have to be circumscribed to the country you are studying. You can get ideas from previous research even if they do not refer to the same population you are studying. You can review studies conducted in different settings. For example, you can review a study on fear of crime in students in a University in the US. The study may show that people that were victim of a crime in the last 12 months tend to report higher levels of fear of crime than those that were not victim of a crime in the last year. That will give you an idea for your study. Is that association between victimization and fear of crime particular of US University students? It may be that victimization affects people’s level of fear everywhere, not just university students. What about Peru’s general population? Are victimized Peruvians more fearful of crime than Peruvians who did not experience victimization? Formulating a hypothesis. After conducting the literature review and looking at findings from previous research, you should be able to formulate a hypothesis regarding what you expect to find in the study. For example, if you review studies of university students and found that people that reported having been a victim of a crime in the past year were also reporting higher levels of fear of crime, you could expect to find a similar result in your study. Remember that the hypothesis is not a conclusion, is an educated guess of what you expect to find given the information you have from theory and previous research. You will actually provide an answer to your research question in the next assignment, when you analyze the data from the survey. You may end up finding evidence aligned with your hypothesis or not. Either is fine but it is important that you state what do you expect to find.
-WHAT TO SUBMIT for Assignment #1 Introduction (no more than 2 paragraphs). Brief description of your research topic and why it is important to study it.
-Research question (no more than 1 paragraph). What do you intend to answer through your research? The research question should be clearly formulated and specific to the country of your choosing. Remember that you should select a research question that can be answered with the Latinobarómetro dataset.
-Review the questionnaire to look at the information that will be available to you for your analysis. See the instructions above.
Literature review (1 to 3 pages). Brief description of at least three peer-reviewed articles in the topic of your choice. You can review studies conducted everywhere, not necessarily in the country you are studying. In your review, you should mention the purpose of each article and what did they find. For example, if reviewing an article about gender and victimization you should mention whether they found that gender was associated with victimization and which gender experienced higher victimization. If you are studying the role of victimization on fear of crime you should discuss if fear of crime was higher in people that had experienced victimization, etc.
A few articles on each topic are posted on the course website as examples. You can use any of these articles in your literature review but you are required to add at least one extra article found by you. I suggest you to look at the references cited in the articles posted to guide your search. It is recommended that you add a final paragraph summarizing what the articles show about your topic and how do they relate to your research question.
Hypothesis (1-2 sentences): Based on your literature review, you should formulate a hypothesis about your research question. For example, if you are studying the relationship between victimization and fear of crime, after you review articles showing that victimization increases fear of crime you may hypothesize that victimized people in the country you choose will report higher levels of fear of crime than those who were not victimized.
For this assignment, all you have to do is to select a topic, write an introduction, formulate a research question (see examples above) and a hypothesis. Keep it simple! Then, you will also review three different articles related to your topic. Remember, the articles have to be related to your topic, not necessarily to the country you are studying.