Social Research Methods (5th edition)

Alan Bryman
  • An introductory one-stop reference for students and researchers that offers unrivalled coverage of both qualitative and quantitative methods
  • Guides students through the whole research process from formulating a research question to writing up their findings
  • Packed full of practical tips and advice to help students undertake their own dissertation and research while avoiding common pitfalls
  • Also available as an e-book with functionality, navigation features, and links that offer extra learning support

New to this Edition:

  • E-research has been integrated throughout the book, reflecting the fact that internet-based research methods can no longer be treated separately from the main research process
  • New sections on Big Data, Skype interviewing, computer assisted content analysis, and using mobile phones as a platform for surveys
  • A new 'Research in the News' feature demonstrates how social research informs the headlines and raises interesting methodological issues
  • New coverage of mixed mode surveys, experience and event sampling and thematic synthesis for systematic reviews

This best-selling introduction to research methods provides students and researchers with unrivalled coverage of both quantitative and qualitative methods, making it invaluable for anyone embarking on social research.
Bridging the gap between theory and practice, Social Research Methods is packed full of engaging examples and practical tips to equip students with the tools and knowledge needed for them to complete their own research projects. In addition to providing practical advice, Bryman deftly explores the nature of social research and the wider issues impinging on it.
This book is supported by an Online Resource Centre, which includes:
For Students:
· A researcher's toolkit to take students step by step through the research process
· Multiple choice questions to help students test their knowledge and understanding
· A guide to using Excel in data analysis to help develop analytical skills
For Registered Adoptors of the book:
· A test bank of questions which can be customized to meet teaching needs
· PowerPoint slides for each chapter
· New seminar outlines including suggested activities and tasks
· New exam and course work questions to set in class


Part One: The Research Process
1: The nature and process of social research
2: Social research strategies: quantitative research and qualitative research
3: Research designs
4: Planning a research project and formulating research questions
5: Getting started: reviewing the literature
6: Ethics and politics in social research
Part Two: Quantitative Research

7: The nature of quantitative research
8: Sampling in quantitative research
9: Structured interviewing
10: Self-administered questionnaires
11: Asking questions
12: Structured observation
13: Content analysis
14: Using existing data
15: Quantitative data analysis
16: Using IBM SPSS for Windows
Part Three: Qualitative Research

17: The nature of qualitative research
18: Sampling in qualitative research
19: Ethnography and participant observation
20: Interviewing in qualitative research
21: Focus groups
22: Language in qualitative research
23: Documents as sources of data
24: Qualitative data analysis
25: Computer-assisted qualitative data analysis: using NVivo
Part Four: Mixed Methods Research and Writing Up

26: Breaking down the quantitative/qualitative divide
27: Mixed methods research: combining quantitative and qualitative research
28: Writing up social research


Alan Bryman is Professor of Organisational and Social Research at the University of Leicester.

Review from previous edition 
Perfectly organized and precisely written, Bryman's Social Research Methods remains the essential text. The book will continue to underpin research methods teaching across the social sciences, and to shape, guide and spur on the work of current and future generations of social researchers. - Richard Giulianotti, Professor of Sociology, Durham University

This book is an indispensable guide for every social science student, introducing the fundamental principles and underlying theories of the subject, while also offering a practical toolkit for carrying out social research. - Hannah Russell, MA Student in Social Research (Social Policy), University of Birmingham