Printer Friendly Version Of American Sociological Association: Pre-convention Courses


August 9, 2013

Hilton New York Midtown

Pre-registration and fee payment required.

Pre-convention Courses

This educational component provides opportunities for attendees to get in-depth training in special subject areas. Intensive four- to six-hour courses are held pre-convention and led by expert faculty who have prepared comprehensive curriculum to engage participants on all levels.  Registrants will receive certificates documenting their participation and completion of these courses.

Attendance at each course is limited to 50 registrants.  Pre-registration is required; fees are $70.  Reservations for the course are accepted in order of receipt in the ASA Executive Office.

Attendees who have preregistered will receive tickets with their name badges when they pick up their Annual Meeting registration materials and the convention tote bag in the ASA Registration Hall.  Course fees are non-refundable after July 10.

Course 01. Introduction to Social Network Analysis
Friday, August 9, 10:00am - 5:30pm
Nassau East, Hilton New York Midtown
Course Leader: Olga V. Mayorova, Higher School of Economics

This is a hands on course based around the use of UCINET and NetDraw. It is designed for graduate students and faculty who have never taken a network course before. The goal is to help participants understand the application of network analysis to sociological studies. The course will provide working knowledge of the network concepts and ideas on how to gather network data. Participants will receive hands on experience of analyzing and visualizing real social network data and learn how to calculate and interpret a variety of descriptive network measures.

Course 02. Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) and Fuzzy Sets
Friday, August 9, 10:00am - 5:30pm
Nassau West, Hilton New York Midtown
Course Leader: Charles C. Ragin, University of California-Irvine

The analytic challenge of case-oriented research is not simply that the number of cases is small, but that researchers gain useful in-depth knowledge of cases that is difficult to represent using conventional forms (e.g., representations that emphasize the “net effects” of “independent variables”). The researcher is left wondering how to represent knowledge of cases in a way that is meaningful and compact, but which also does not deny case complexity. Set-theoretic methods such as Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA), the central focus of this workshop, offer a solution. QCA is fundamentally a case-oriented method that can be applied to small-to-moderate size Ns. It is most useful when researchers have knowledge of each case included in an investigation, there is a relatively small number of such cases (e.g., 10-50), and the investigator seeks to compare cases as configurations. With these methods it is possible to construct representations of cross-case patterns that allow for substantial heterogeneity and diversity. This workshop offers an introduction to the approach and to the use of the software package fsQCA (a free download from Both the crisp (i.e., Boolean) and fuzzy-set versions of the method will be presented.

Course 03. Connecting Micro and Macro in Ethnography
Friday, August 9, 1:30-5:30pm
Murray Hill East, Hilton New York Midtown
Course Leader: Jane L. Collins, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Connecting the “micro” to the “macro,” or the local to the global, requires scholars to place observable events in the context of broader and less visible processes.  It sometimes also requires us to move from the study of “spaces of place” to what Manuel Castells has called “spaces of flows.”  To do this well requires careful case selection and case definition as we seek to clarify how the situations we study will illuminate broader processes and trends.  In this course, we will begin with a focus on case selection and research design issues, discussing the difference between generalizable and transferable results.  We will then explore a series of methodological strategies for linking “micro” and “macro,” including: (1) nested sampling; (2) ethnographic process-tracing; (3) juxtaposing timelines; (4) mapping commodity chains; (5) mapping other global “flows,” including migrants, discourses, and concepts.  We will discuss the merits and special difficulties of the multi-sited research design that many of these strategies imply.  The course is appropriate for scholars at all levels involved in planning ethnographic research and will address the concerns of those conducting international/global research as well as those engaged in studies in a single national context.