DRE 1012 Research Design and Methodological Choices

DRE 1012 Research Design and Methodological Choices

Course code: 
DRE 1012
Strategy and Entrepreneurship
Course coordinator: 
Thomas Hoholm
Alessandra Luzzi
Course name in Norwegian: 
Research Design and Methodological Choices
Product category: 
PhD Strategy, Entrepreneurship and Innovation courses
2023 Autumn
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

Research design is commonly defined as a program or a blueprint that guides researchers through the process of collecting, analyzing and interpreting observations. Its essentialness is rooted in its effects on the validity of knowledge claims. Research design is pivotal in affecting the strength, persuasiveness, and authoritativeness of claims concerning causality, external validity, and construct validity (to name a few). Research design is both a science and an art. While some of the major principles are firmly established, we continuously observe renovations, extensions as well as bold innovations.

Learning outcomes - Knowledge

At the end of the course, the students should have developed:


A better understanding of important aspects to consider when planning for doing research

Knowledge about different research designs

Knowledge about strengths and weaknesses of various research designs

Knowledge on the variety of philosophical perspectives underlying research in the social sciences

Learning outcomes - Skills

The ability to choose an appropriate methodological design

The ability to present/write about empirical findings in a more persuasive way


General Competence

The ability to critically reflect upon possibilities and limitations with different ways of doing research

The ability to review/referee a research paper submitted to a leading journal in the social sciences.

Course content

The course will cover a wide range of issues including:

  • Research designs
  • Theory and theoretical contribution
  • Validity and reliability
  • Sampling
  • Research with quantitative data
  • Modeling relationships
  • Moderation and mediation effects
  • Issues of endogeneity
  • Introduction to databases
  • Overview of methods in quantitative research
  • Research with qualitative Data
  • Overview of methods in qualitative research
Teaching and learning activities

The course requires high level of investment from all participants. The design necessitates ex-ante and ex-post course presentations of your research design, the development of your research design and evaluation of research designs published in leading international journals.

Software tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.
Additional information



Enrollment in a PhD programme is a general requirement for participation in PhD courses at BI Norwegian Business School.
External candidates are kindly asked to attach confirmation of enrollment in a PhD programme when signing up for a course. Other candidates may be allowed to sit in on courses by approval of the course leader. Sitting in on a course does not permit registration for the course, handing in exams or gaining credits for the course. Course certificates or confirmation letters will not be issued for sitting in on courses.

Required prerequisite knowledge


Exam categoryWeightInvigilationDurationGroupingComment exam
Exam category:
Form of assessment:
Written submission
Exam code:
Grading scale:
Grading rules:
Internal examiner
Examination when next scheduled course
100No2 Month(s)Individual One unique file will be submitted at the end, while receiving feedback on occasions during the semester
Exam category:Submission
Form of assessment:Written submission
Grouping (size):Individual
Duration:2 Month(s)
Comment:One unique file will be submitted at the end, while receiving feedback on occasions during the semester
Exam code:DRE10123
Grading scale:ECTS
Resit:Examination when next scheduled course
Type of Assessment: 
Portfolio assessment
Total weight: 
Student workload
Group work / Assignments
230 Hour(s)
Specified learning activities (including reading)
Student's own work with learning resources
80 Hour(s)
Autonomous student learning (including exam preparation)
Feedback activities and counselling
10 Hour(s)
Two class presentations.
60 Hour(s)
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore a course of 12 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of at least 320 hours.