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Regular version of the site
Master 2021/2022

Research Seminar "Social and Cross-cultural Psychology"

Type: Elective course (Applied Social Psychology)
Area of studies: Psychology
Delivered by: School of Psychology
When: 1 year, 1-4 module
Mode of studies: offline
Open to: students of one campus
Instructors: Maria A. Bultseva, Ekaterina Bushina, Ekaterina Kodja, Zarina Lepshokova
Master’s programme: Applied Social Psychology
Language: English
ECTS credits: 8
Contact hours: 116

Course Syllabus


The course is designed for master students, and is based on the previously learned courses (“Social psychology”, “Cross-cultural psychology”, “Research Methods in Psychology” and “Experimental psychology”). The research seminar of the 1st year is aimed to facilitate students' work during first several stages of planning and conducting the research. During the 1st year students will learn about the standards of contemporary scientific research, will know how to plan and organize their own research in the area of social and cross-cultural psychology, will develop their own project proposals, will train to create convincing presentations of their studies in order to participate in the scientific discussion. During the second year, students consistently prepare their master's theses and discuss with teacher and group parts of their work: plan of empirical research, research tools, results of preliminary mathematical processing, final results of mathematical processing, text of the dissertation. Novelty of this two-years course lies in the facts that (1) the course is aimed to integrate international and Russian standards of scientific work, which is a new practice in the training of master students in the field of psychology in Russia; (2) the integration is achieved through the adjustment of APA standards for conducting and presenting psychological study to the requirements of Higher School of Economics for master’s thesis; (3) course format is usual for master students training in Higher School of Economics, however it does not have analogues for master students training in “Social and Cross-Cultural Psychology” area in Russia. Methodical novelty of the course may be explained in terms of (1) use of reviews as an instrument for understanding and differentiating a good quality research; (2) group discussions at all stages of the development of students’ research projects (this gives students a unique opportunity to receive feedback not only from teachers, but also from the group, which helps to understand the weaknesses of the project, and improve it); (3) all work is organized in a way that students can always connect the tasks with their own research interest, which increases students’ motivation significantly.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • To help students to develop their own research projects;
  • To introduce to students the international standards of good quality research in the field of social and cross-cultural psychology;
  • To develop students' abilities to participate in the scientific discussion;
  • To teach students how to plan and organize their own research.
  • The 2nd year research seminar is aimed to introduce the international standards of good quality research in the field of social and cross-cultural psychology to students. During the seminar students will learn how to develop their own research projects, how to plan and organize their own research in the area of social and cross-cultural psychology. They also will obtain the skills of participation in scientific discussions. Specific topics addressed are: (1) Relevance of methods and data processing to hypotheses of the study; (2) Development a questionnaire or design of experiment for main study; (3) Development of the project proposal: revised structure and content; (4) Development of a timetable with the description on stages and timing of main research; (5) Data collection and analysis; (6) Finalizing of master theses; (7) Development of the skills of presentation of master theses.
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • Are able to critically analyze existing theories and articles in order to generate own text
  • Are able to describe and justify chosen research design and methodology
  • Are able to formulate problem statement, research questions, and hypotheses of the proposed study
  • Are able to participate in the scientific discussion
  • Are able to present effectively the results of the study
  • Are able to structure scientific text in a coherent way
  • Know how to develop their own research projects
  • Know how to plan and organize their own research
  • Know the international standards of high quality research in the fields of social and cross-cultural psychology
  • Students are able to assess the correctness of applying the selected processing methods to the data, which were obtained
  • Students are able to collect empirical data after approval of the study plan at the workshop
  • Students are able to critically analyze and discuss empirical methods of each student’ thesis
  • Students are able to describe of methods, sample and time frames of the empirical study
  • Students are able to understand whether the selected design is adequate to test the proposed hypotheses
  • Students are able to understand whether the selected design is adequate to test the proposed hypotheses. Students are able to prepare questionnaires.
  • Students are able to use in their research the latest methods of mathematical- statistical data (SEM, multilevel analysis).
  • Students possess techniques of group discussions, brainstorming to discuss novelty of master dissertation, formulation of research problem, and research hypotheses.
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • First year, topic 1. Writing an introduction
    After students finish the classess dedicated to the topic 1 , they write the 1st test.
  • First year, topic 2. Writing a theoretical overview: information search and quality standards
    After students finish the classess dedicated to the topic 2 , they write the 2nd test.
  • First year, topic 3. Research design and methods in social psychology
    After students finish the classess dedicated to the topic 3 , they write the 3rd test.
  • First year, topic 4. Finalizing a year essay
  • Second year, topic 1. Writing and discussing the project proposal of the research in the master thesis.
  • Second year, topic 2. Developing a design of empirical study, questionnaire’s preparation.
  • Second year, topic 3. Critical analysis of planned master study methodology.
  • Second year, topic 4. Discussing research design of the master thesis.
  • Second year, topic 5. Analysis and discussion of sampling plan of the master study.
  • Second year, topic 6. Discussing final plan of empirical study of master thesis.
  • Second year, topic 7. Presentation of first results of mathematical-statistical analysis of empirical study.
  • Second year, topic 8. Presentation of final results of mathematical-statistical analysis from empirical study.
  • Second year, topic 9. Preliminary defense of the master thesis.
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Test on the 1st topic
    Only students who have passed the 1st home task are allowed to take the 1st test.
  • non-blocking Test on the 2nd topic
    Only students who have passed the 2nd home task are allowed to take the 2nd test.
  • non-blocking Test on the 3rd topic
    Only students who have passed the 3rd home task are allowed to take the 3rd test.
  • non-blocking Test on the 4th topic
    Only students who have passed the 4th home task are allowed to take the 4th test.
  • non-blocking Participation in class activities
    Students may get a detailed feedback from the tutors on particular parts of their term paper during the relevant class activities or during the consultations. However, tutors will not give any feedback just in a written form via e-mail except for some special cases related with students absence due to some valid reason.
  • non-blocking Predefence of term paper
    In the period of pandemic pre-defense is conducted on the MS Teams platform. Students must connect to the pre-defense according to the schedule of presentations created beforehand. The student's computer must meet the following requirements: a working camera and microphone, and MS Teams support. To participate in the pre-defense, the student must: appear for the pre-defense according to the exact schedule, and turn on the camera and microphone when answering. During the pre-defense, students can turn off the camera only if its use worsen the connection, and can use notes. A short-term connection failure is considered to be any connection failure during the pre-defense which gives student a possibility to continue showing the presentation of the term paper during the scheduled time. A long-term connection failure is considered to be a connection failure which doesn’t give student any possibility to continue showing the presentation of the term paper during the scheduled time. If there is a long-term connection failure, the student cannot continue to participate in the pre-defense. The retake procedure involves the use of the same task and procedure.
  • non-blocking Final presentation of the method section
    Presentation of the final version of the method section and questionnaire/interview guide + word file with description of the method section and questionnaire/interview guide
  • non-blocking Presentation the results of data collection
    Description of the sample, procedure, measures with examples of questions indicators of suitability (Cronbach' alpha, CFA, etc.), descriptive statistics
  • non-blocking Preliminary defense of master thesis
    Manuscript of Master Thesis + presentation of Master Thesis.
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • 2021/2022 4th module
    0.2 * Participation in class activities + 0.15 * Test on the 3rd topic + 0.15 * Test on the 1st topic + 0.15 * Test on the 4th topic + 0.2 * Predefence of term paper + 0.15 * Test on the 2nd topic
  • 2022/2023 2nd module
    0.5 * Final presentation of the method section + 0.5 * Presentation the results of data collection
  • 2022/2023 3rd module
    1 * Preliminary defense of master thesis


Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Beins, B. (2012). APA Style Simplified : Writing in Psychology, Education, Nursing, and Sociology (Vol. 1st ed). Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=443323
  • Benefits and challenges of qualitative methodologies in cross-cultural psychology studies. (2016). Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsnar&AN=edsnar.oai.dspace.library.uu.nl.1874.350860
  • Coolican, H. (2014). Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology (Vol. Sixth edition). East Sussex: Psychology Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=753537
  • Cross-cultural methods of research. (2016). Sage. https://doi.org/10.4135/9781483346274
  • Davidson, L. (2007). Qualitative research methods in psychology: Introduction through empirical studies. Journal of Phenomenological Psychology, 38(1), 151–154. https://doi.org/10.1163/156916207X190292
  • Goodwin, C. J., & Goodwin, K. A. (2017). Research in Psychology : Methods and Design (Vol. Eighth edition). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1639428
  • Green, B. N., Johnson, C. D., & Adams, A. (2006). Writing narrative literature reviews for peer-reviewed journals: secrets of the trade. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.86A0B01A
  • Improving the conduct and reporting of statistical analysis in psychology. (2016). Psychometrika, 81(1), 33–38. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11336-015-9444-2
  • Making methods meet: Mixed designs in cross-cultural research. (2010). Wiley. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsnar&AN=edsnar.oai.tilburguniversity.edu.publications.161d7038.6df1.45ee.8728.12d0d1571ba9
  • McGuire, W. J. (1997). Creative hypothesis generating in psychology: Some useful heuristics. Annual Review of Psychology, 48(1), 1. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.psych.48.1.1
  • References/Bibliography APA Based on the “Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association ” 6 th edition. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.BC8916D8
  • Rosenthal, R., & DiMatteo, M. R. (2001). META-ANALYSIS: Recent Developments in Quantitative Methods for Literature Reviews. Annual Review of Psychology, 52(1), 59. https://doi.org/10.1146/annurev.psych.52.1.59
  • Sullivan, G. B. (2008). Dennis Howitt & Duncan Cramer (2005). Introduction to Research Methods in Psychology. Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 9(1), 1–6. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=sih&AN=29973411
  • Susan B. Smith. (2012). A Guide for Writing APA Style Research Papers. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.BCE37201
  • Ted Gournelos, Joshua R. Hammonds, & Maridath A. Wilson. (2019). Doing Academic Research : A Practical Guide to Research Methods and Analysis. Routledge.
  • Twenge, J. (2014). PSY 610 Advanced Research Methods in Psychology. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.75746F4E
  • Use APA style, 6th edition. (2015). Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.523B4292
  • White, L. (2005). Writes of Passage: Writing an Empirical Journal Article. Journal of Marriage & Family, 67(4), 791–798. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1741-3737.2005.00175.x

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Advanced research methods in psychology, Giles, D. C., 2004
  • Aneas, M. A., & Sandín, M. P. (2012). Intercultural and Cross-Cultural Communication Research: Some Reflections about Culture and Qualitative Methods. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.F35BECF0
  • Cross-cultural research methods in sociology. (2015) (Vol. 5). https://doi.org/10.1016/b978-0-08-097086-8.44014-6
  • Gavin, H. (2008). Understanding Research Methods and Statistics in Psychology. Los Angeles: SAGE Publications Ltd. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=518813
  • Hastings, C., & Herbert, B. E. (2016). Effective Strategies in Writing and Research: Workshop Presentations. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.29A7997F
  • Horst, J. S. (2016). The Psychology Research Companion : From Student Project to Working Life. London: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1067605
  • Howitt, D. (2016). Research Methods in Psychology. [N.p.]: Pearson. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1419871
  • Janusheva, V. (2017). Choice and Formulation of the Topic in the Five-Paragraph Essay and Quality of the Students’ Written Expression in Rm. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.2BC3AF8
  • Javalgi, R. (Raj) G., Granot, E., & Brashear Alejandro, T. G. (2011). Qualitative Methods in International Sales Research: Cross-Cultural Considerations. Journal of Personal Selling & Sales Management, 31(2), 157–170. https://doi.org/10.2753/PSS0885-3134310204
  • Kaul, A. (2005). The Effective Presentation : Talk Your Way To Success. New Delhi: Sage Publications Pvt. Ltd. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=283706
  • Langdridge, D., & Hagger-Johnson, G. (2013). Introduction to Research Methods and Data Analysis in Psychology 3rd Edn : UEL (Vol. Third edition). Harlow: Pearson. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1417938
  • Monica W. Tracey, & Kelly L. Unger. (2010). Cross Cultural Instruction: An Instructional Design Case. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.23B5A631
  • Patten, M. L. (2017). Educational and Psychological Research : A Cross-Section of Journal Articles for Analysis and Evaluation (Vol. Third edition). London: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1360606
  • Read, K. (2015). Formatting a Paper in APA Style. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.D9B32F60
  • Valery Chirkov. (2015). Fundamentals of Research on Culture and Psychology : Theory and Methods. Routledge.
  • Wagner, W., Hansen, K., & Kronberger, N. (2014). Quantitative and qualitative research across cultures and languages: cultural metrics and their application. Integrative Psychological & Behavioral Science, 48(4), 418–434. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12124-014-9269-z
  • Ylijoki, O.-H. (2001). Master’s Thesis Writing from a Narrative Approach. Studies in Higher Education, 26(1), 21–34. https://doi.org/10.1080/03075070020030698