HIS 2238 Methods of Historical Inquiry

Course Description:

This course is designed to provide a comprehensive knowledge about both critical thinking and research skills in historical inquiry. It will focus on conceptual developments in the philosophy of knowledge and how this impacted changes in the nature of historical inquiry. It will also deal with research techniques, methods and methodology.

Learning Objectives:

This course is designed to prepare students for doing research and to provide practical experience in following scientific methods, methodology, and the conventions of academic writing in order to equip students as future academics and researchers.

Learning Outcomes:
At the end of this course, students should be able to

• Write a research proposal
• Describe the nexus between paradigm shifts and shifts in theory building in research and reflect it in their own research
• Identify different methods and methodologies for historical inquiry
• Write research papers using empirical evidence and theories and concepts

Course Content:

1. Historical Inquiry: Introduction
2. Philosophical issues on historical inquiry
3. Doing historical research
4. Formulating a research problem and hypothesis
5. Writing a research proposal
6. Reviewing the literature
7. Data collection methods
8. Data analysis methods
9. Techniques in academic writing

Midterm Test 20%
Midterm Assignment 20%
Research article 60%

Recommended Readings:

Burns and Pickard (eds) (2000) Philoshopies of History: From Enlightenment to Postmodernity. UK: Blackwell Publishers.

Chandraratna, D., Smith, L. (1997) A Background Reader in Philosophy, Australia: Curtin University of Technology.
Gunaratna, R. D. (2003) Vidyatmaka Kramaya Kandy: N.N. Printers.
May, T. (1997) Social Science Research Issues, Methods and Process, Philadelphia: Open University Press.
උයන්ගොඩ ජේ (2010) සමාජයීය හා මානව විද්‍යා පර්යේෂණ කොලඹ: iudcúoHd{hskaf.a ix.uh.