OPOSSEM, the Online Portal of Social Science Education in Methodology, is an online portal to facilitate sharing of various resources for teaching social science research methods (particularly statistical methods) among educators in secondary, undergraduate, and postgraduate settings. Little educational material is freely available to serve the needs of basic research methods courses in the social sciences, particularly political science. The creation of problem sets and lecture notes is time-intensive, and methods courses requiring such preparation are becoming more widespread across all types of institutions. This project seeks to reduce these start-up costs and enhance methods instruction by providing an online space in which instructors can share materials and information. Community members are able to post to the discussion forum, share teaching materials (syllabi, lecture notes, assignments, or working papers on teaching research methods), suggest external resources (online data source, resources for students or instructors, or published research on teaching research methods), or rate community content.
The project is supported by an NSF grant (Award #0968723); and is made possible by development support from the ICPSR and hosting by McMaster University Libraries.
The project team includes Shane Nordyke (firstname.lastname@example.org), Jan Box-Steffensmeier (email@example.com), Michelle Dion (firstname.lastname@example.org), Bill Jacoby (email@example.com), and Phil Schrodt (firstname.lastname@example.org). During summer 2010, the project held two workshops to bring together instructors to develop a core set of instructional materials for an undergraduate quantitative methods course.