The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Methodology Seminars

In addition to the series of workshops offered each summer through its Summer Institute, the Methodology Program at CRF offers ad hoc seminars throughout the academic year. The ad hoc seminars provide a training opportunity for UMass Amherst faculty and graduate students, helping transform their research using innovative methodologies and best practices, while learning from other scholars across a variety of social and natural science disciplines.

Current seminars spring 2019


Friday, April 26—South College, Room W245 12:30-2:30 pm

Social scientists often rely on scales and questionnaires to assess underlying traits we can’t directly observe. These tools are critical to good research, but how do
you evaluate the quality of your scales? 

During this 2-hour workshop we will address issues of questionnaire design as well as how to test several qualities of your data. We will cover commonly used methods (e.g. Reliability Analysis, Confirmatory Factor Analysis)
as well as methods  that may be less familiar in some fields are less commonly utilized by psychology (e.g. 
Item Response Theory).

This is a beginner level workshop and doesn’t require your own data or
experience with survey design. Data and syntax will be provided for
participants to follow along (in RStudio) so a laptop with RStudio is
suggested. No prior experience with R is required.

Instructor Joel Ginn, Staff Methodology Consultant

 Joel joined CRF in Spring 2018 as a methodology consultant. Joel is a social psychology Ph.D. student in the Peace and Violence program at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. His research focuses on the way values and identity shape how people respond to social and environmental issues. He works mainly with survey design, mediation, and moderation analysis and has an interest in psychometrics and different modeling techniques.

Register Here!


If you have any questions, please email Amanda Moore at

Check our website periodically for upcoming events, seminars & workshops!