PR1600 – Assignment 1
Attitudes towards immigrants and refugees: A survey experiment
During the Autumn term we are going to discuss how to design, implement and analyse the results from a survey experiment. The assessment for this part of the course involves writing a brief research report (2000 words) describing what we have done (details below). The assignment must be submitted on Turnitin by 10am on Monday 11 January 2016 in Week 11. This essay will be worth 25% of the final mark. It is important that you attend every class during this term as we will be going over each section of the research report in the seminars. Please note that we will give you as much support and guidance as possible during term time; but that you will not receive supervision after the end of term. Please do not write to seminar tutors during the holidays. Any questions must therefore be addressed during term time.
About the experiment
In a recent speech David Cameron expressed concern about ‘swarms of migrants’ from the Middle East trying to ‘break in to Britain’ from Calais. His choice of language was criticised by the Deputy leader of the Labour party Harriet Harman as ‘dehumanising’. In this assignment we will investigate whether language matters and if so whether describing people from Syria as ‘migrants’ or ‘refugees’ affects how much support people have for letting Syrians come and live in the UK. In order to test this hypothesis we will carry out a survey experiment on survey monkey. Once the survey is online you will receive a web-link to the survey. You will have one week to distribute the link to friends on facebook and followers on twitter to try and get as many people as possible to complete the survey. (Note: PR1600 students should not complete the survey). We will then look at the results in class, and you will have the Christmas holidays to write up and complete the report.
The research report must consist of the following sections:
1. Introduction (approx. 200 words)
Briefly describe the research question and provide a justification for why this is an important question to answer. E.g. does language newspapers use affect public attitudes towards migrants/refugees? Political implications.
2. Theory (approx. 500 words)
Drawing on existing literature provide a justification for the hypothesis that you are going to test and describe how the study builds on / develops existing research. Why might referring to people as immigrants or refugees affect support for letting Syrians come and live in the UK?
3. Hypotheses (approx. 100 words)
Briefly state the main hypothesis that you will test. Your hypothesis should be stated as an empirical statement.
4. Methodology (approx. 500 words)
Describe the experimental set up, outlining the various steps that were taken; including the sample; the different experimental conditions; the allocation of subjects to different conditions; and the wording of the questions.
5. Ethics (approx. 100 words)
Include a few lines on the ethical implications of the research.
6. Results (approx. 500 words)
Describe the results of the experiment. Include one table (clearly labelled). Comment on whether the results support the hypothesis or not.
7. Conclusion (approx. 100 words)
Briefly reflect on the implications of the study.
Include a full bibliography of all works cited. Please follow the departmental style guide:
Please refer to the Undergraduate Student Handbook for departmental policy on essay submission, rules for word count, late penalties and plagiarism.
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