Singapore University of Social Sciences

Research Methods in Applied Linguistics

Research Methods in Applied Linguistics (TSL573)


TSL 573 Research Methods in Applied Linguistics provides students with insights into the process of research from the initial stage of conceptualisation and hypothesis formation to the design, execution, analysis and review stage. Different methods of quantitative, qualitative and mixed research in Applied Linguistics are examined in detail to appraise their purpose and use in a variety of classroom and educational contexts.

Level: 5
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY JAN
E-Learning: BLENDED - Learning is done MAINLY online using interactive study materials in Canvas. Students receive guidance and support from online instructors via discussion forums and emails. This is supplemented with SOME face-to-face sessions. If the course has an exam component, this will be administered on-campus.


  • Research ethics, plagiarism and collusion
  • Research log, data management, keeping track of sources and taking notes
  • Formulation of research questions and hypotheses
  • Sampling, collection, transcription, coding and analysis of data
  • Discussion and presentation of data
  • Quantitative methods: Questionnaire surveys, experimental versus quasi-experimental studies
  • Statistical analysis and SPSS; computer text corpora
  • The issue of research validity and reliability
  • Qualitative methods: Ethnography, observations, interviews, introspection, case studies, diary studies, research journals
  • The issue of inter-coder and intra-coder reliability
  • Mixed methods: Classroom research, action research and intervention studies
  • The issue of research triangulation

Learning Outcome

  • Examine the issues of research ethics and academic integrity
  • Discuss the process of research from the initial stage to the final stage
  • Appraise the use of quantitative methods in research in different contexts
  • Critique the use of qualitative methods in research in different contexts
  • Analyse a small set of data using computer-mediated means (e.g., SPSS, computer text corpora)
  • Design and execute a small-scale research project using quantitative, qualitative or mixed research methods
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