Social Science Research Methods (Graduate Certificate)
New Program

Welcome to the Graduate Certificate in Social Science Research Methods.  This certificate, offered through the School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning at ASU, is open to graduate students across ASU. The graduate Certificate in Social Science Research Methods prepares students and professionals to acquire, manage, and analyze a broad range of data on human thought and human behavior. Data can be qualitative (e.g. text, images, sound) or quantitative (e.g. direct observation, surveys, geospatial). Data acquisition skills may include the downloading and managing of information from online sources or the primary collection of data in surveys or in direct observation. A key feature of this program is a focus on data analysis, so students and professionals will be able to analyze and interpret any data that they collect. All students in this program will demonstrate skills in statistical analysis plus skills in selection of methods related to their interests.

This program is designed for applicants who hold a minimum of a bachelor’s degree from regional, national, or internationally accredited institutions, and in any field/discipline (e.g. anthropology, sociology, human development, sustainability, geography, political science, or other fields with approval of the academic unit).

Applicants must submit an official ASU Graduate Admission online application and official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions they have attended, along with a statement of interest explaining how the certificate program will enhance their graduate studies or professional work.

PLEASE NOTE - Graduate College policy restricts the number of pre-admission courses you may apply towards the certificate to 40%. This means that only 6 credit hours that you have already taken or are currently taking may be applied towards the certificate requirements. So please apply early.

Applicants must have completed an introductory statistics course in statistics (e.g., STP 530 Applied Regression Analysis, CRJ 504 Statistical Tools for Criminology and Criminal Justice, POS 603 Polimetrics I, NUR 617 Foundational Concepts in Science and Statistics, or equivalent with approval of the academic unit) before admission to the program.

Minimum credit hours required for certificate: 18 face-to-face hours

Required Core Courses* and Credit Hours

Students will select one of the following courses on multivariate data analysis: 

SOC 508  Structural Equations Analysis for the Social Sciences  (3 credit hours)

STP 530  Applied Regression Analysis (3 credit hours)

STP 531  Applied Analysis of Variance (3 credit hours)

STP 533  Applied Multivariate Analysis  (3 credit hours)

PSY 531  Multiple Regression/Psych Res (3 credit hours)

FAS 508  Structural Equation Analysis (3 credit hours)

*A core course cannot fulfill the requirements of an elective course and a core course at the same time.  If a student takes FAS 508, SOC 508, STP 530, 31, 33 or PSY 531 as a core course, they must select different coursework as electives.


Elective or Research Coursework 

Students select four 3-credit hour courses from the menu of approved courses.  Alternatives to these courses will be accepted on approval by the program directors.

For a sample of approved elective courses click HERE.


Culminating Experience

Students must take a 3-credit culminating experience course (GCU 593 Applied Project) as the final step in completing the program.  The goal of this course is to integrate the knowledge and experiences from prior courses through a project that involves research design, data acquisition (either through primary data collection or the use of existing data), data analysis, and write-up.  The goal is to ensure that students who hold the Graduate Certificate in Social Science Research Methods can apply social science concepts in real-world problem solving settings.

Degree Offered

Social Science Research Methods (Graduate Certificate)
Liberal Arts & Sciences, College of

Downtown, Polytechnic, Tempe, West

Plan of Study

The Plan of Study is the required curriculum to complete the program.

View Plan of Study