Guides

Professor Minkoff's Guide to Writing Research Papers in Political Science

This guide is intended to help students work through the process of developing and writing a research paper for a political science course. The guide addresses a range of topics. After summarizing the six parts of a research paper, I offer some suggestions on how one goes about selecting and refining a research question. I then discuss the development and writing of each of the sections of the research paper and conclude with a section on sourcing. Along the way I discuss common problems that students face when writing a research paper and offer some suggestions about how to overcome them.

Table of Contents

I. About this Guide
II. The Six Parts of a Research Paper
III. Selecting a Research Question
IV. Examining the Previous Literature and Writing a Lit. Review
V. Developing and Presenting Theory
VI. Developing and Presenting a Research Design
VII. Analysis
VIII. Conclusion/Discussion
IX. Confronting Complications
X. Sourcing

Professor Minkoff's Introductory Guide to Stata

This guide introduces you to the commands necessary to do basic statistical analysis in Stata.  It emphasizes (and goes a bit beyond) the commands taught in my Designing Social Inquiry course but should be generally applicable to new users of Stata.  The guide was written based on Stata 11 for a Mac.*  Most (if not all) of the commands presented here are consistent across Mac and Windows versions Stata and compatible with all versions since Stata 9 (and in most cases, earlier versions as well). 

The goal is that users of this guide will become proficient enough in both statistics and Stata that they will be able to move beyond the commands explained here.  For example, this guide provides minimal support for more advanced regression techniques such as time-series analysis and regression for categorical dependent variables.  However, before users of Stata can learn to do these more advanced techniques, they will need to have strong grasp of the commands reviewed in this guide.