Logo Students

SSCI2010 – Qualitative Inquiry in the Social Sciences

2020 – Session 1, Weekday attendance, North Ryde

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, any references to assessment tasks and on-campus delivery may no longer be up-to-date on this page.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

General Information

Pdf icon Download as PDF
Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff
Charlotte Overgaard
Credit points Credit points
Prerequisites Prerequisites
(40cp including SSC100, SSCI100 or SSCI1000)
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description

Qualitative inquiry aims to access ‘human stories’ and lives as they unfold or through the traces people leave behind. How do people interact in and understand their social worlds? How do these interactions and perceptions shape their outlook, behaviour, and experiences in particular situations? This unit focuses on the valuable insights that qualitative inquiry can provide to address these questions. The unit proceeds in three parts. The first part surveys influential approaches to qualitative research design, highlighting the importance of understanding social context as well as managing the relationship between theory, method and analysis. The second part focuses on how to ethically apply common data collection methods used in qualitative inquiry, from interviews to observational techniques to unobtrusive practices. The third part of the unit examines how to manage and analyse qualitative data in a critical, robust and systematic manner. In this unit, students will gain insight into how to design and carry out quality qualitative research into social lives and important social issues.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at https://students.mq.edu.au/important-dates

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  • ULO1: display knowledge of the range of qualitative approaches and know when each should be used in social research
  • ULO2: design and apply qualitative instruments, methods and analytic strategies
  • ULO3: employ skills in interpreting data and the results generated by qualitative social research in an ethical and transparent manner
  • ULO4: apply knowledge of major challenges confronting researchers working in the social sciences
  • ULO5: apply high-level information retrieval, critical reading, problem development, and writing skills required to undertake social research with qualitative methods

Assessment Tasks

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Assessment details are no longer provided here as a result of changes due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Students should consult iLearn for revised unit information.

Find out more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and potential impacts on staff and students

General Assessment Information

General Assessment Information

Written assignments must be submitted via Turnitin.

Students should be aware of the following policies in regard to assignments:

Academic Honesty Policy: http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html. The university takes plagiarism very seriously and there are penalties for using other people's work as your own. This includes directly quoting other people's work without quotation marks and/or acknowledgement. Please check this unit's iLearn site for resources on how to cite your sources properly and avoid plagiarism.

Special Consideration Policy: https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policies/special-consideration

Assessment Policy: https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policies/assessment. For specifics on Grading Policy, click on the "Schedule 1" tab.

Requests for Extensions

To request an extension for a period up to and including 5 working days, please email your tutor.

To apply for an extension of more than 5 working days please complete a Special Consideration request and submit it online through AskMQ. For more information see the Special Consideration Policy above and find further details here: https://students.mq.edu.au/study/my-study-program/special-consideration/disruption-to-studies. 

Late Assessment Penalty

Unless a Special Consideration request has been submitted and approved, (a) a penalty for lateness will apply—two (2) marks out of 100 will be deducted per day for assignments submitted after the due date—and (b) no assignment will be accepted more than seven (7) days (incl. weekends) after the original submission deadline. No late submissions will be accepted for timed assessments—e.g. quizzes, online tests

Delivery and Resources

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

Any references to on-campus delivery below may no longer be relevant due to COVID-19.

Please check here for updated delivery information: https://ask.mq.edu.au/account/pub/display/unit_status

Classes consist of lectures and workshops. Please keep an eye on Ilearn for more information.

Readings are made available through Leganto.

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central). Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Students seeking more policy resources can visit the Student Policy Gateway (https://students.mq.edu.au/support/study/student-policy-gateway). It is your one-stop-shop for the key policies you need to know about throughout your undergraduate student journey.

If you would like to see all the policies relevant to Learning and Teaching visit Policy Central (https://staff.mq.edu.au/work/strategy-planning-and-governance/university-policies-and-procedures/policy-central).

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/study/getting-started/student-conduct​


Results published on platform other than eStudent, (eg. iLearn, Coursera etc.) or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au or if you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to help you improve your marks and take control of your study.

The Library provides online and face to face support to help you find and use relevant information resources. 

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

If you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.