MY451      Half Unit
Introduction to Quantitative Analysis

This information is for the 2013/14 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Benjamin Lauderdale COL8.10

Dr Sally Stares COL8.12


This course is compulsory on the MSc in Sociology (Research). This course is available on the MSc in Comparative Politics, MSc in Comparative Politics (Research), MSc in Conflict Studies, MSc in Gender (Research), MSc in International Health Policy, MSc in International Health Policy (Health Economics), MSc in International Migration and Public Policy, MSc in Politics and Government in the European Union, MSc in Public Policy and Administration, MSc in Public Policy and Administration (Research), MSc in Social Anthropology (Research) and MSc in Social Research Methods. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Research students please see MY551.

Course content

An intensive introduction to quantitative data analysis in the social sciences. The course is intended for students with no previous experience of quantitative methods or statistics. It covers the foundations of descriptive statistics and statistical estimation and inference. At the end of the course students should be able to carry out univariate and bi-variate data analysis and have an appreciation of multiple linear regression. The computer classes give 'hands-on' training in the application of statistical techniques to real social science research problems using the SPSS computer package (no prior knowledge of SPSS is necessary).


20 hours of lectures and 10 hours of computer workshops in the MT. 20 hours of lectures and 10 hours of computer workshops in the LT. 2 hours of lectures in the ST.

The course runs twice per year: in MT (MY451M) and again in LT (MY452L). Ten two-hour lectures and nine one-hour computer classes per term. Weekly assignments are required.

Formative coursework

Weekly assignments are required.

Indicative reading

A course pack will be available for download online. Additional reading: many introductory statistics books are available. But we particularly recommend Alan Agresti and Christine Franklin (2009) Statistics: The Art and Science of Learning from Data. Pearson Education. Or Alan Agresti and Barbara Finlay (2009, 4th edition) Statistical Methods for the Social Sciences. Pearson Education (note that the second book is more advanced and is particularly useful if you are planning to take MY451 and MY452.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the main exam period.

A two-hour open book unseen examination in ST.

Student performance results

(2011/12 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 77.3
Merit 15.5
Pass 4.5
Fail 2.7

Key facts

Department: Methodology

Total students 2012/13: 1

Average class size 2012/13: Unavailable

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills

Course survey results

(2011/12 - 2012/13 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 99.7%



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