What we know about teaching social research methods
and data science skills online from creating SAGE Campus


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The teaching and learning of social research methods, and quantitative skills in particular, is of growing importance. Several high-profile capacity-building initiatives, such as Nuffield and the ESRC’s Q-Step initiative in the UK, have launched in recent years with an aim of improving research skills of postgraduates and undergraduates.

This SAGE white paper is co-authored by Debbie Collins at Southampton University, Nicholas Fernando of Grow Learning and Andy Kirk, data visualisation expert and trainer. It presents a review of current literature on approaches to teaching research skills and provides a context for the development of SAGE Campus, our online learning platform providing a range of online courses for social scientists to learn data science skills.

There is little academic research available on how social research methods and data science skills are being taught online and how digital technology is used to support delivery of course content and pedagogic approaches, strategies, tactics and tasks.

This white paper aims to contribute to the small but growing body of literature on best practice and tips for developing curricula and teaching social research methods and data science online by sharing experiences of the team who developed SAGE Campus.


Interested in using e-Learning to teach
social research methods and data science skills?

The goal of this white paper is to share insights and guidance for faculty, librarians, learning technologists and educators who are planning to develop their own online courses in the future, or would like to incorporate online course material into their curriculum. If your institution is interested in using SAGE Campus online courses, find out about our group packages for institutions. If you would like to enquire about our courses or discuss your institution’s e-Learning needs with us, please contact us below.