Our courses prepare students to execute their empirical research in skilled and credible ways. We have distinctive research strengths in experimental methods, multi-level models, multi-method research design, qualitative methods, social choice, spatial modeling, agent-based modeling, GIS, and interpretive methods.

Training in Methods

Graduate students fulfill a Methods Requirement as part of their graduate training, usually by taking Introduction to Probability and Statistics (PS 403) and Linear Models (PS 405).

Students pursuing Political Theory as a primary field are exempted from this requirement.  Substitutions of methods courses from other departments or institutions must be approved by the Methods Field Chair.

Students who wish to continue their training beyond the department’s offerings often attend summer courses at the ICPSR, participate in the IQMR, pursue a Master’s degree in statistics while continuing graduate study in our department, or take methods courses in other departments after consultation with their advisors and the Field Chair.

Comprehensive Exams in Methods

Students pursuing methods as a second field must take Introduction to Probability and Statistics (PS 403) and Linear Models (PS 405) and three additional methods courses from the following list:

  • Quantitative Causal Inference (PS 406)
  • Experimental Political Science (PS 407)
  • Methods of Political Inquiry (PS 408)
  • Qualitative Methods (PS 495)
  • Quantitative Methods for Categorical Outcomes (Sociology 401-2). 

 A range of upper-division or graduate courses in the Statistics department can also count for the methods field with approval from the Field Chair.

Methods Resources

The primary meeting place for methods faculty and students in our department and in Sociology is the Applied Quantitative Methods Working Group. The department also has an experimental lab that students and faculty members regularly use for methodological as well as substantive projects.