Research Methods in Ethnomusicology – ETHM 650

CG • Section • 11/10/2019 to 04/18/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

Introduction to research methodologies in preparation for completion of the capstone project in ethnomusicology.


ETHM 531


The primary purpose of this course is to guide the student into making informed and appropriate choices in developing research questions, selecting appropriate methodologies, and designing research proposals in ethnomusicology. The final outcome of this course is the preparation of a preliminary research proposal, which may ultimately serve as the student’s research proposal for the master’s project or thesis and/or design of the field experience.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Articulate the differences between quantitative, qualitative, and mixed method.
  2. Formulate research questions and hypotheses.
  3. Utilize research methods practically in relation to upcoming individual research projects.
  4. Develop strategies of inquiry for research topics.
  5. Identify an area of interest; ethnic group, geography, or genre.
  6. Create a research strategy tailored specifically to the student’s chosen field.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (15)

The student is required to post a thread in response to the provided prompt for each forum. Each thread must be at least 200 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 2 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be at least 100 words.

Writing Exercises (10)

The writing exercises vary in length and type. Some exercises will come directly from the text and others will be based on the student’s fieldwork experience. All writing exercises must include a cover page and bibliography and use current Turabian formatting properly. The number of required citations will also vary by assignment.

Protecting Human Research Participants Training

By going through the Human Research Subjects Training course, you will have a deeper idea of what kind of concerns surround research and human subjects. This assignment will be completed during Module/Week 6 as Writing Exercise #5.

Preliminary Research Proposal (Final Paper)

Students will complete and submit a preliminary proposal for their thesis or field project. Students should consult additional research design materials in designing the research project; specifically, materials that deal more comprehensively with the type of research being conducted (e.g., survey, ethnography, case studies, phenomenology, etc.). This paper will be handed in twice, first as a rough draft (Writing Exercise #10) and then as the Final Paper. No length is set for this paper, but it needs to include all necessary front matter, chapters 1, 2, & 3 of the proposal, any necessary back matter, and a bibliography (Consult the Components of the Master’s Thesis or Project attached to the Final Paper Instructions found under Course Content). Turabian 8th edition formatting must be used, and the paper must be submitted through the SafeAssign link in Blackboard.