Research-Oriented Curriculum

The department places considerable emphasis on the teaching of research methods. Empirical modules at the BA level and research modules as part of the MA program introduce students to the theoretical foundations and methodological principles which are central to the social sciences and cultural studies. Instructors outline the concrete methods of qualitative and interpretive research, stressing their practical implementation and the role of these methods in actual research. The specific topic addressed in these courses varies depending on the interests of the individual instructors; these interests are outlined both on the section’s homepage and on the instructors’ individual profile pages.

These empirical and research modules span two semesters and include a final written report as well as a public presentation of the research findings. As such, they provide an excellent basis for the final theses required for the bachelor’s or master’s degree.


Research seminars in recent semesters have covered the following topics:


Suffering and Pain in Science and Art: Paths to Understanding – Forms of Representation, Qualitative Methods of Text and Image Analysis

Supervision: The research seminar includes instructors from two faculties: Prof. Ralph Köhnen (Philology/German Studies) and Sandra Plontke, Paul Sebastian Ruppel, and Prof. Jürgen Straub (Social Sciences).



Pioneers: Empirical Exploration of How Innovations Are Adopted

Supervision: Dr. Christian Gudehus



Qualitative Methods of Text and Image Analysis: Multiple Methodological Approaches for Research

Supervision: Prof. Jürgen Straub and Paul Sebastian Ruppel



"...Against the Islamization of the West" – Sociological Considerations of Islamophobia and Racism

Supervision: Anna-Lisa Holz and Dr. Pradeep Chakkarath



The Social Sciences in the Theater: Research in Staged Worlds

Supervision: Paul S. Ruppel, Dr. Pradeep Chakkarath, and Prof. Jürgen Straub



Climate Consciousness, Ecological Behavior, and Airline Travel: Qualitative, Methodological Approaches

Supervision: Paul Sebastian Ruppel



Attraction and Angst: Fostering China's Professional Image – Cultural Events and Opportunities for Continuous Education as Locations for Intercultural Communication

Supervision: Florian Hessel, Anna Sieben



Cooperation and Competition – Conflicts between Parents: The Methodologies and Methods of Qualitative Research

Supervision: Ulrike Gatzemeier and Anna Sieben