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Number 13 (1/2004)

Learning Materials to Support Research and Teaching

Hannele Keckman-Koivuniemi   1.3.2004

FSD has launched a three-year project, the objective of which is to create learning materials to support many aspects of social science research and methodology teaching. The Finnish university degree system has recently been changed, and the project aims to provide provide additional resources to universities, helping them to carry out the necessary changes in degree requirements and curricula.

A number of sub-projects

The project will focus on the following issues: teaching of research methodology, information retrieval, research ethics, data collection, data processing and data archival, and the secondary use of data.

FSD's Research Methods Web Resource (MOTV in Finnish) will be put to good use in the project. The web resource will be extended to cover qualitative research methods and qualitative data. Learning materials covering information retrieval and information sources on the web will be produced in co-operation with the Information Literacy Project of Finnish research libraries.

One sub-project will produce a textbook on data collection, processing, documentation and preservation. The book will also cover ethical and judicial issues connected to data collection and data use. Guidelines on how to process, describe, anonymise and store different kinds of data will be given. Another sub-project will provide guidelines for the secondary use of data.

Target group

FSD's learning material project will be carried out in co-operation with individual researchers, universities and libraries, both in Finland and abroad. The target group consists of graduate and post-graduate students, researchers and teachers in the fields of social sciences, health sciences, pedagogics and humanities, and, in addition, of information professionals and academic funding bodies.

User guides will be produced for foreign researchers and students. This sub-project is part of Madiera, an EU-funded project in which data archives from seven different European countries participate. The goal of Madiera is to develop an international, web-based social science data database with a variety of search tools. In the project, FSD coordinates dissemination and the production of learning materials. A multilingual thesaurus ELSST (European Language Social Science Thesaurus) will enable researcher to circumvent language barriers when looking for data in the Madiera portal. FSD aims to produce a user guide in Finnish for the thesaurus.


Printed learning materials will be published in FSD's publication series and digital ones on the web. FSD will keep all interested parties informed of the project through its news bulletin, web site and e-mail lists.

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