AOS340 Qualitative Methods

Credits (ECTS):5

Course responsible:Bernt Aarset

Campus / Online:Taught campus Ås

Teaching language:Norsk

Course frequency:Annually

Nominal workload:125 work hours.

Teaching and exam period:This course starts in Autumn parallel. This course has teaching/evaluation in Autumn parallel, .

About this course

The course assumes that the student has decided on the topic of the master's thesis. The course has a user perspective for students who are going to start the master's thesis, and this topic will be central to the teaching. The course provides the students with an introduction to qualitative methods. The course emphasizes desig of appropriate qualitative methods, such as choice of methodology, analysis of data, and the possibility of generalization based on qualitative data. The main technique to collect data will be depth interviews, but participating observation, document analysis, conversation analysis, and others will be presented. The course will provide increased understanding of research and knowledge development. Design and choice of method will be based on research question, theoretical perspectives, analysis, and the direction of the project.

Learning outcome


  • Knowledge of the characteristics of qualitative research design
  • Knowledge of the use of qualitative method for collecting, analyzing and presentation of empirical material


  • Establish research problems that can be answered using qualitative method
  • Develop a qualitative research design
  • Substantiate choice of research methods in light of research problem, theoretical perspective, analysis and project direction
  • Plan and conduct interviews adapted to a qualitative research design
  • Analyzing data by qualitative analysis

General competence

  • Be able to assess relevant choice of methods
  • Analyzing research problems where qualitative methods are applicable, and select and use appropriate theoretical and practical knowledge in the analysis
  • Understand the relationships between research and knowledge
  • The teaching will be carried out as a combination of recorded lectures on video and work with a group project.

    Guidance will be given in connection with the term paper and the group project.

    It will be possible to complete the course for exchange students.

  • Supervision as needed.
  • AOS240 Research in Social Sciences or equivalent.
  • The end-of-semester assignment will count 100% of the grade.

    Mandatory assignments must be approved before the semester assignment is evaluated.

    No opportunity for re-sit examination.

    Term paper Grading: Letter grades
  • External sensor reviews the group assignment and the semester assignment.
  • One mandatory group assignment.

    The assignment is evaluated approved/ not approved.

    Approved submission is a requirement to participate in the exam.

    There is no need to repeat compulsory in the event of renewed trial.

  • One 2-hour seminar/lecture each week.
  • The course is intended for master students at NMBU and the course is addressed to those who will write their master thesis during the subsequent semester.