Scientific methods for the humanities



Scientific methods for the humanities

Willie van Peer, Frank Hakemulder, Sonia Zyngier

(Linguistic approaches to literature / Gerard J. Steen, Willie van Peer, Peter Verdonk, editors, v. 13)

J. Benjamins, c2012

  • : hbk
  • : pbk

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Bibliography: p. [317]-320



Here is a much needed introductory textbook on empirical research methods for the Humanities. Especially aimed at students and scholars of Literature, Applied Linguistics, and Film and Media, it stimulates readers to reflect on the problems and possibilities of testing the empirical assumptions and offers hands-on learning opportunities to develop empirical studies. It explains a wide range of methods, from interviews to observation research, and guides readers through the choices researchers have to make. It discusses the essence of experiments, illustrates how studies are designed, how to develop questionnaires, and helps readers to collect and analyze data by themselves. The book presents qualitative approaches to research but focuses mostly on quantitative methods, detailing the workings of basic statistics. At the end, the book also shows how to give papers at international conferences, how to draft a report, and what is involved in the preparation of a publishable article.


  • 1. List of Figures, Tables and Graphs
  • 2. Acknowledgements
  • 3. Foreword
  • 4. Chapter 1. A new beginning
  • 5. Interlude. Some misconceptions about scientific and empirical research of culture
  • 6. Chapter 2. Basic insights from the philosophy of science
  • 7. Chapter 3. Research methodology and design
  • 8. Chapter 4. Methods of data collection
  • 9. Chapter 5. How to construct a questionnaire
  • 10. Chapter 6. Experiment
  • 11. Chapter 7. How to enter and manipulate data in SPSS
  • 12. Chapter 8. Descriptive statistics
  • 13. Chapter 9. Inference statistics: Preliminaries
  • 14. Chapter 10. Inference statistics: Test Selection, t-test and non-parametric equivalents
  • 15. Chapter 11. Inference statistics: ANOVA
  • 16. Chapter 12. Communicating results
  • 17. Epilogue
  • 18. Bibliography
  • 19. Notes on contributors
  • 20. Author index
  • 21. Subject index

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