4142 Methods of Empirical Social Research
Maciej Filipek, MSc (WU), Univ.Prof. Dr. Thomas Plümper
Contact details
Weekly hours
Language of instruction
02/06/23 to 02/14/23
Registration via LPIS
Notes to the course
Day Date Time Room
Thursday 03/02/23 12:15 PM - 03:15 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 03/09/23 12:15 PM - 03:15 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 03/16/23 12:15 PM - 03:15 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 03/23/23 12:15 PM - 03:15 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 03/30/23 12:00 PM - 05:00 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 04/13/23 12:00 PM - 03:30 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 04/20/23 12:00 PM - 03:30 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 04/27/23 12:00 PM - 03:30 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 05/04/23 12:00 PM - 03:30 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 05/11/23 12:00 PM - 03:30 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 05/25/23 12:00 PM - 03:30 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 06/01/23 12:00 PM - 03:30 PM Online-Einheit
Thursday 06/15/23 12:00 PM - 03:30 PM Online-Einheit

This course offers the applied part to the lecture “Introduction to Empirical Social Research”. The course is designed to assist students in deepening their knowledge and skills acquired in the lecture.

In this course, students will learn the basic logic of research designs and discuss a selection of statistical and causal analysis of real world phenomena frequently used in empirical social research. The focus lies on the conversion of theoretical practices into empirical studies using a modern “Big Data” approach. The course develops a critical point of view regarding the right research design.

Learning outcomes

Graduates of this course are able to deal with methodological approaches and scientific findings. In addition, they should gain a better understanding of the conception and the course of a research process and be able to adequately apply basic concepts of empirical social research using “Big Data”.

Attendance requirements

Attendance in this course is compulsory in line with standard rules for absence in practice courses (VUE). More detailed information on absenteeism will be explained in the first unit. Students are required to attend the first constitutive session of the seminar.

Teaching/learning method(s)

The course units are based on a mix of different teaching methods, such as: Interactive Lecture using a tutoring approach to support students in their empirical research approach

  •         Interactive group exercises
  •         Set up of the research design
  •          Presentations of results

In addition, students regularly write assignments for the preparation or reflection of the LV units.






Overall course performance will be evaluated based on two components:

- Several brief written assignments such as reflection tasks or readings comprehensions (60 %), and

- A written essay at the end of the semester (40 %).


Grading / Notenschlüssel:

0-50%: Insufficient; 50.1-62.5% Sufficient; 62.6-75% Satisfactory; 75.1-87.5% Good; 87.6-100% Excellent

In order to pass the course, students need to receive a positive evaluation (i.e. more than half of the points) on each of

Prerequisites for participation and waiting lists

Requirements: Course language is English. As readings and slides are in English, students need at least good passive language skills to follow the course. Basic methodological knowledge is highly welcome but not required for this course.


Course enrollment is on the basis of "first-come, first-served” principle. If you have registered but cannot participate in the course, please de-register via LPIS during the registration period so that your course is available to students on the waiting list. If there is a waiting list for enrollment in the course, students at the waiting list will be notified after the end of the enrollment period, and will be allocated to available places. Students will be ranked by their study progress not by their rank on the waiting list. This procedure, however, is not to be understood as a place guarantee.


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Last edited: 2023-02-09