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Regular version of the site
Master 2020/2021

Methodological Research Seminar

Type: Elective course (Applied Economics)
Area of studies: Economics
When: 1 year, 1, 2 module
Mode of studies: offline
Open to: students of one campus
Master’s programme: Applied Economics
Language: English
ECTS credits: 5

Course Syllabus

Abstract

This course is designed to develop basic academic skills and prepare students for starting their own research. The main focus of research seminar will be on refining students’ research skills: searching scholarly information, critical reading and reviewing, discussing empirical evidence, academic writing and presenting the research findings in effective ways. The classes are guided by different professors, each representing particular field of research. Moving gradually from one topic to another, students will be involved in class activities designed to deepen their understanding of theoretical and empirical research. Seminar participants are be expected to take an active role in responding to assigned tasks, working individually and in-group.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • Informing students about main research approaches to studying economic problems
  • Assisting students in choosing the subject field and preparing project proposal for their master thesis
  • Refining student’s research skills: searching scholarly information, working with library resources and academic journals, reviewing theoretical and methodological literature, working with data
  • Refining academic presentation skills: discussing empirical evidence, presenting the research findings, opposing
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • Be aware of different research tracks, learning process and possibilities offered by the program
  • Be aware of library resources, be able to search and review relevant literature
  • Be able to review and discuss academic and applied research
  • Be able to structure a research paper, formulate research question, write abstract
  • Select a line of arguments, present and discuss the research method and results of their study
  • Be able to find research gaps in subject area and justify research topic
  • Be aware of data available for their own research, its characteristics and limitations
  • Be aware of different research approaches and empirical methods, be able to choose and justify appropriate methods for their study
  • Be able to present and discuss the results of Master’s thesis
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Topic 1. Introduction to Research seminar
    Getting acquainted with Master program “Applied Economics”, educational tracks, academic calendar, educational process, elective courses, possibilities for study abroad, and double degree programs.
  • Topic 2. Working with the HSE library resources
    Overview of the HSE library resources. Working with citation databases. Searching literature and citations. Accessing articles and journals.
  • Topic 3. Writing literature review
    Why writing a literature review? Types of literature reviews. How to choose literature for a review. Structure of literature reviews.
  • Topic 4. Structuring and formatting academic text. Preparing an abstract.
    How to best structure an academic manuscript? The obligatory parts of research paper. Types of references and list of references. How to write an abstract? How to choose the keywords?
  • Topic 5. Presenting a research
    What are the rules of good presentation? What is mandatory and what can be left out of brackets? What's the best place to start? How best to finish? Short, clear and beautiful.
  • Topic 6. Research motivation
    Highlighting the purpose for your research. How to choose an original topic for your research and how to motivate research novelty. Choice of topic for qualitative and quantitative analysis. What constitutes originality? Plagiarism and rules for correct references and scientific comparisons.
  • Topic 7. Qualitative and quantitative analysis
    Types of data analysis and data types: macro data, micro data, primary data, secondary data. Theoretical and empirical papers. Qualitative and quantitative analysis. Research papers, methodological papers and meta-reviews. How to document data sources, how to conduct data description. Statistical and regression analysis – how to present methodology and results.
  • Topic 8. Internal and external validity
    Developing an argument based on your theories, and/or qualitative and quantitative results. Interpretation of your results and robustness of your findings. How do your results apply to other economic settings? How are your results sensitive to the chosen theoretical model or empirical specification? Cross-industry and cross-country comparison.
  • Topic 9. Common features and mistakes in Master’s theses
    What are the features of a good Master ‘s thesis? Or of a poor one? What questions may be asked to your research and how to prepare for them.
  • Topic 10. Preparing conclusions for applied research
    Applied economics suggests that research findings should be useful. How to ensure correct description of possible ways of implementation. General rules for public policy practices.
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking In-class activity
  • non-blocking Presentation of research paper
  • non-blocking Reviewing/opposing presentation
  • non-blocking Essay
    The topic of an essay is subject to student's choice, and could be related to the topic of his/her future master thesis.
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (2 module)
    0.25 * Essay + 0.25 * In-class activity + 0.25 * Presentation of research paper + 0.25 * Reviewing/opposing presentation
Bibliography

Bibliography

Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Michael Alley. (2013). The Craft of Scientific Presentations : Critical Steps to Succeed and Critical Errors to Avoid: Vol. Second edition. Springer.
  • Michael Alley. (2018). The Craft of Scientific Writing: Vol. Fourth edition. Springer.

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Hal R. Varian. (2016). How to Build an Economic Model in Your Spare Time. The American Economist, (1), 81. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.sae.amerec.v61y2016i1p81.90