How to Theorize

Faculteit Gedrags- en MaatschappijWetenschappen
Jaar 2019/20
Vakcode GMTPGE05
Vaknaam How to Theorize
Niveau(s) master
Voertaal Engels
Periode semester I a
ECTS 2.5

Uitgebreide vaknaam How to Theorize: A Workshop on Creative Theory Generation and Critical Thinking
Leerdoelen After the course, the students:
- can use a number of specific heuristics to creatively generate hypotheses in small groups,
- can apply ‘critical thinking’ about theoretical assumptions to existing theorizing and research,
- can define concepts through introspection and collective discussion (Socratic dialogue technique),
- can reflect on one’s own ‘hidden assumptions’ as a researcher
- can reflect on the praxis of science and on the importance of creative theory generation and critical thinking in this process
Omschrijving Research master curricula typically focus on teaching students how to do research, but fail to include training on how to theorize. However, the latter is absolutely pivotal because theorizing is essential to interpreting any research finding. Specifically, being trained in creative theory generation and critical thinking will make one’s research designs stronger and the resulting findings more meaningful. This two-day workshop addresses the question of how to theorize through a focused, creative, and interactive approach. Its main message is that, much like doing research, theorizing is something that is fun, interactive, and inherently social. As such it can be learned through exercise and training. In the workshop, we will focus, for instance, on using helpful heuristics to creatively generate hypotheses; and on ‘critical thinking’ that revolves around identifying and playing around with meta-theoretical assumptions; introspectively and collectively defining core concepts in the social sciences (Socratic Dialogue technique); and identifying one’s own ‘hidden assumptions’ about what one studies. Through this hands-on approach, this workshop should not just lead to more knowledge and understanding of how to theorize, but also to a more creative and critical consideration of one’s own assumptions as a researcher.
Uren per week
(tweedaagse workshop)
Vaksoort master
Coördinator prof. dr. M. van Zomeren
Docent(en) prof. dr. M. van Zomeren
Verplichte literatuur
Titel Auteur ISBN Prijs
Slife, B. D. & Williams, R. N. (1995). What's behind the research? Discovering hidden assumptions in the behavioral sciences. London: SAGE. Slife, B. D. & Williams, R. N. 0803958625 ca. €  70,00
Opmerkingen Maximum number of students who can participate is 30, with priority for first-year students
Opgenomen in
Opleiding Jaar Periode Type
Research Master, Behavioural and Social Sciences (ReMa)  (ReMa) 1 semester I a verplicht