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Institute of Government

Tennessee State University


Fall 2002


Course Number:                     PA 713


Title:                                       Research Methodology and Applied Quantitative Techniques


Course Credit:                        Three Credits


Instructor:                              Rodney E. Stanley, Ph.D.

Office: Avon Williams Campus, Suite F-13


Phone: (615) 963 – 7249: W

                                                            (615) 746 - 4958: H

Office Hours:  Tuesday 12:00 – 5:00

                        Thursday 12:00 – 5:00                                   


Course Description:            This course is structured in survey format in order to inform the public administration student about statistical computer applications in public administration.  The prerequisite class for this course is PA 613 or the equivalent thereof.


Course Objectives:            At the end of this course the student will be able to:


1) Establish a theoretical foundation for conducted experimental and scientific research in public administration.


2) Bring to the attention of the student current and future trends that are emerging in research methods in an effort to assist in preparing the student for trends and research in public and non-profit organizations.


3) Students should be able to demonstrate mastery of various statistical techniques that will allow them properly conduct research in public administration.


Topical Outline:            The topics that will be discussed throughout the semester in Statistical Computer Applications In Public Administration will include: measures of central tendency, multivariate analysis, multivariate regression, time series analysis, factor analysis, logistic regression and other topics necessary for applying and understanding statistical techniques in public affairs.



Teaching Strategies:            Lectures, class discussion, individual projects, weekly assignments, exams


Required Text:


Mertler, Craig A. and Rachel A. Vannatta.  2002.  Advanced and Multivariate Statistical Methods, 2nd edition.  Los Angeles, CA: Pyrczak Publishing.  ISBN: 1-884585-8.


Course Requirements:


            Midterm Exam                                                                        100 points

            Final Exam                                                                            100 points

            Class Projects (Conference Paper & Presentation)                200 points

            Weekly Assignments                                                                 100 points

Total                                                                                       500 points


Grading Scale:              Final Grades will be premised on cumulative points as follows: A = 500- 440; B = 439 - 380; C = 379 - 300; D = 299 - 220; F = below 220.


Individual Project Grading Scale:  A = 100 – 90; B = 89 – 80; C = 79 – 70; D = 69 – 60; F = below 60.


Exams:                        Each student will be required to complete a midterm and final exam.  A midterm exam will be given during the designated midterm exam week and will be administered in class.  The final exam will also be in class and the student will have one class period to complete the exam.  The exam will resemble a focused question on the preliminary exam for completion of the Ph.D. Each exam will consist of questions about important topics discussed throughout the semester. 


Conference Paper:    Each student will be required to write the equivalent of a quantitative conference paper as their class project.  The purpose of this exercise is to equip the student with the necessary skills for conducting research and presenting that research at professional conferences in the social sciences.  Therefore, the student will write and submit two copies of their conference paper on the day they present their findings to the class.  Papers and presentations will be due at the end of the semester (date has not yet been determined).


Content of Conference Papers:


Minimum Requirements

·        At least 20 - 25 pages in length, not counting the title page but no more than 25 pages.


Notes for the Ph.D. student to remember:

·        All sections in the paper should begin with an introductory paragraph that discusses what issues will be addressed in each section of the paper.

·        The use of active voice in writing papers at the Ph.D. level of study is encouraged because it separates the doctoral student from the master and undergraduate student in writing style.  Furthermore, it demonstrates to the instructor that the student has a skillful understanding of the English language.  Plus, it makes your writing much more interesting to read!


Grading Criteria for Papers:

1)      Analysis: A sufficient number of public policy implementation concepts are used to analyze the situation discussed in the paper;

2)      References: A variety of pertinent and timely references were sought and obtained in preparing the paper;

3)      Organization: The main points are stated clearly and arranged in a logical sequence;

4)      Coherence: The development of ideas, arguments and discussion shows consistency and logical connection;

5)      Clarity: The ideas, arguments and discussion shows consistency and logical connection;

6)      Conciseness: The language is direct and to the point, using sufficient space to say exactly what is intended and be readily understood by the reader;

7)      Grammar: The written is in standard American English, with proper sentence structure, syntax, punctuation and spelling;

8)      Drafting: The writing shows evidence of being drafted and revised before submission of the final copy.

9)      Following Directions: Identifying and addressing all components of the project the instructor outlines.

10)  Timeliness: Simply turning the project in on the specified date given by the instructor.


Class Presentations:

Each student will present the conference paper they prepared for this class during the latter end of the semester.  This presentation will resemble a conference panel similar to those found at SECOPA, ASPA, Southern Political Science Association and Western Social Science Association.  The purpose of this presentation is to prepare the doctoral student for presenting their research at the dissertation stage of the degree.  Furthermore, for the ambitious student, this project will prepare them for research presentations on their road to tenure in the academic community.  The presentations will be critiqued as follows:


1)      Organization – There is a structured format in which the student displays throughout the presentation.

2)      Planning – There is evidence of rehearsing and the presentation flows well and is properly paced according to time.

3)      Visual Aids – Adequate use of visual aids to assist in explanations during the presentation.

4)      Speaker Enthusiasm – Displayed adequate knowledge of the subject, and exhibited sufficient self-confidence during the presentation.

5)      Voice Projection – Good articulation, proper delivery rate, no distracting gestures (e.g., chewing gum, too many “uhs”, etc).



Students are expected to be present in order to participate in class discussions.  For every absence the instructor will deduct 10 points from the students participation and attendance grade. Excessive absences will lead to a substantial lowering of a student’s grade. General criteria used to assess class participation include:


1)      Content Mastery: Students must display an understanding of facts, concepts, and theories presented in the assigned readings and lectures.  This ability is the basis for all higher-level skills and must be made evident by classroom comments and/or response to questions.

2)      Communication Skills: Students must be able to inform others in an intelligent manner what she/he knows.  Ideas must be communicated clearly and persuasively.  Communication skills include listening to others and understanding what they have said, responding appropriately, asking questions in a clear manner, avoiding rambling discourses or class domination, using proper vocabulary pertinent to the discussion, building on the ideas of others, etc.

3)      Synthesis/Integration: Students must illuminate the connections between the material under consideration and other bodies of knowledge.  For example, one could take several ideas from the reading or class discussions and combine them to produce a new perspective on an issue, or one could take outside materials and combine them to create new insights.  Students who probe the interdisciplinary roots of the theories presented or who are able to view the author or the materials from several viewpoints demonstrate this skill.

4)      Creativity: Students must demonstrate that they have mastered the basic material and have gone on to produce their own insights.  A simple repetition of ideas from the articles will not suffice, nor will simply commenting on what others have said.  Students must go beyond the obvious by bringing their own beliefs and imagination to bear.  Creativity may be displayed by showing further implications of the material, by applying it to a new field, or by finding new ways of articulating the materials, which produce significant insights.

5)      Valuing: Students should be able to identify the value inherent in the material studied.  The underlying assumptions of the author should be identified.  Furthermore, students should be able to articulate their own positions by reference to basic underlying values.  Students must not simply feel something is wrong or incorrect; they must be able to state why, based on some hierarchy of values.  In either accepting or rejecting a position, the operative values must become explicit.

6)      General Enthusiasm and Interest in the Class: This can be shown by regularity of attendance and thoughtful insights given throughout the semester in class discussions.


*** All papers (including organization design paper) should use the following format: Times New Roman, 12 point font, 1” margins from left to right and top to bottom, and double spaced.  Paginate all papers you submit to me for a grade.  Late projects will automatically be reduced one letter grade for each day they are late not each class period.


Note: Following explicit directions are an important aspect of graduate school training.  Therefore, it is important that the student follow the stated guidelines in this syllabus, throughout the course of this class, because failure to do so will result in point reductions. 


Accommodations for Students with Disabilities: Any students who feel the need for academic accommodations due to a recognized disability by the TSU Handbook, will be given such adjustments only after the student goes through the proper channels at the university to receive such accommodations.  The TSU Handbook is a good place to start if you are unaware of the “proper procedures.”


*** Note this syllabus is subject to change at the discretion of the instructor.















Presentation Evaluation Forms


100            Superior, outstanding                            75            Not quite what was expected

95        Very Good                                       70            Less than expected

90        Much Better Than Expected                      65            Much less than expected

85        Better Than Expected                         60            Considerably less than expected

80        What was expected                           59 - 0            Pure charity


Name: ________________________________________________________________


Topic: _____________________________________________________________________________


 Factor                                     Strong                                                 Weak


                                                            Comments:                                           Comments:


1) Organization (20)                              _______________________________________


2) Planning (20)                              _______________________________________


3) Visual Aids            (20)                              _______________________________________


4) Speaker Enthusiasm (20)                  _______________________________________


5) Voice Projection (20)             _______________________________________



Overall Grade: _____________ (100/Perfect Score)






Grading Criteria for Conference Papers


100            Superior, outstanding                            50            Not quite what was expected

90        Very Good                                       40            Less than expected

80        Much Better Than Expected                      30            Much less than expected

70        Better Than Expected                         20            Considerably less than expected

60        What was expected                           10            Pure charity


Name: ________________________________________________________________


Title: _____________________________________________________________________________




1) Analysis: (10)                              _______________________________________


2) References: (10)                              _______________________________________


3) Organization: (10)                              _______________________________________


4) Coherence: (10)                              _______________________________________


5) Clarity: (10)                                    _______________________________________


6) Conciseness: (10)                              _______________________________________


7) Grammar: (10)                              _______________________________________


8) Drafting: (10)                              _______________________________________


9) Following Directions: (10)                  _______________________________________


10) Timeliness: (10)                              _______________________________________


Overall Grade: _____________ (100/Perfect Score)









Course Outline

Week One

            Class Introduction

            Requirements For the Course

Week Two

            The Behavioral Movement, Research Design & Background Statistics        

Week Three

            Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 1: Introduction To Multivariate Statistics

Week Four

            Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 2: A Guide to Multivariate Techniques

Week Five     

Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 3: Pre-Analysis Data Screening

Week Six

            Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 4: Factorial Analysis of Variance          

Week Seven

            Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 5: Analysis of Covariance

Week Eight

            Midterm Exam

Week Nine

            Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 6: Multivariate Analysis of Variance and Covariance

Week Ten

            Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 7: Multiple Regression

Week Eleven

            Additional Readings: Time series Analysis

            Pooled Time Series Analysis

            Interrupted Time Series Analysis

            ARIMA Time series Analysis

Week Twelve

            Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 8: Path Analysis

Week Thirteen

Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 9: Factor Analysis

Week Fourteen

            Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 10: Discriminant Analysis

Week Fifteen

            Mertler &Vannatta, Chapter 11: Logistic Regression

Week Sixteen

            Paper Presentations

Week Seventeen

Final Exam