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Introduction to Social Research

Introduction to Social Research
Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches

Third Edition
Additional resources:

January 2014 | 408 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
In the new edition of Introduction to Social Research, Keith Punch takes a fresh look at the entire research process, from formulating a research question to writing up your research. Covering qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods, the book focuses on matching research questions to appropriate methods. Offering concise, balanced coverage, this book clearly explains the underlying principles of social research and shows you how to put this understanding into practice.  

The third edition includes:
  • A new chapter on literature searching and reviewing
  • Expanded coverage of ethics
  • A new section on using the internet in research
  • A range of additional student learning features
  • A brand new companion website including full-text journal articles, additional case studies and video tutorials.
Using a range of examples from student research and published work, the book is an ideal introduction for any social science student taking a research methods course or embarking on their own undergraduate or postgraduate research project.
Theory and Method in Social Research
Ethics in Social Research - Alis Oancea
Research Questions
From Research Questions to Data
Literature Searching and Reviewing - with Alis Oancea
Qualitative Research Design
Collecting Qualitative Data
The Analysis of Qualitative Data
Quantitative Research Design
Collecting Quantitative Data
The Analysis of Quantitative Data
The Internet and Research - Wayne McGowan
Mixed Methods and Evaluation
Research Writing


Click for online resources

Companion website to accompany the Third Edition of Introduction to Social Research

This is a beautifully understated and highly accessible book. It focuses on the issues and practicalities of doing social scientific research, introducing a wide range of methods and approaches to get students thinking and a project underway. This new edition has been thoroughly updated, and there are welcome new chapters on theory, literature searching, research ethics and the internet. The book is authoritative and will be well used by students and teachers of social science research methods.

Amanda Coffey, Professor
School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University

Comprehensive, thoroughgoing and well organised, Punch's book has a deservedly high reputation among social science researchers. This third edition, with new material on literature searching, ethics, theory and the Internet makes it a must-have for students and professional researchers alike.

Gary Thomas, Professor of Inclusion and Diversity
School of Education, University of Birmingham

In this work, Keith Punch covers all the essentials of social science research with clarity and an obvious command of the subject matter. His coverage of quantitative and qualitative methods from design through to collection and analysis offers breadth and depth perfect for any undergraduate attempting to navigate the research world. I look forward to putting a copy of this latest edition on my shelf and recommending it students. 

Dr Zina O'Leary, Unit of Study Coordinator,
Graduate School of Government, The University of SydneyANZSOG / The University of Sydney

This 3rd edition provides an accessible yet comprehensive and detailed framework for understanding social research. The clear layout with chapter objectives and summary questions offers a robust and practical learning structure for students which guides them through both theoretical and methodological approaches to contemporary research.  No research methods course should be without it!!

Dr. Emma Bond, Deputy Director
Institute for Social, Educational and Enterprise Development, Universoty Campus Suffolk

All in all, this book is incredibly well structured and free from jargon and over complication. It is a joy to read, and it guides the reader step-by-step towards understanding what social research is all about.

Dr Sophie Lecheler
Marie Curie Rearch Fellow, Department of Government, LSE and Assistant Professor of Political Communication, University of Amsterdam
LSE Book Reviews Website

An easy to read and thorough insight into social research. I liked how simple ideas were broken down and explained.

Miss Holly Waterman
Dpt of Nursing, Midwifery & Social Wo, Hertfordshire University
February 17, 2023

A comprehensive book that suits a range of levels studying and researching social sciences. The key terms and exercises/study questions at the end of each chapter are useful tools for the students.

Mrs Elizabeth Roberts
Animal Production, Welfare and Veterinary Science, Harper Adams University
July 15, 2020

Outstanding publication which is easy to read and provides students with a strong grounding in social research and makes the subject understandable and comprehensive.

Mr Shaun Kershaw
Petroc, Petroc College
November 30, 2020

A good book for the reading of social research module.

Mrs Chrissie Draper
Educational Psychology, Derby College
December 3, 2019

a great book that helps position thinking and understanding.

Mrs Jacqueline Taylor
Department of Education, Newman University
September 17, 2019

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