US100: Community Based Research


Mon-Wed 3:30-4:50, DBH 5011

Instructor: Gillian Hayes


Office hours by appointment

Overview: In this class, we will critically examine the research endeavor, its layers and products. We will grapple with information and engage in discussions regarding the current state of research. We will explore alternative conceptions of research, focusing primarily on the community-based research model. This class will include guest lectures, group discussions, individual reflections, a group research project and presentation, and final paper.

Prerequisites: Before taking this course students should have completed Uni Stu 10. Introduction to Civic and Community Engagement. If you have not yet completed this course, please see the instructor.

Learning Outcomes: Students will be able to:

  • apply theories and methods of community-based research to your mentor’s research project and your individual experience in that project
  • analyze community contributions to research processes and products
  • evaluate how research contributes to community problem solving
  • generate high quality journal reflections of research observations
  • create a final paper based on journal reflections and relevant publications

Assessment and Grading

  • Participation                                                                10%
  • Quizzes                                                                       15%
  • 30 hrs. of research work with faculty mentor               20%
  • Journal reflections #1 and #2                                      10%
  • Group assessment                                                       5%
  • Mid-term group research presentation                        20%
  • Final group presentation                                             20%
  • Total                                                                         100 %

You may not take this class pass/fail

Participation. You should attend all class sessions, participate actively, read all assigned readings, and join in class discussion. Obviously, there will be times when you are sick or have another commitment. So, you can miss two classes without penalty. After that, your participation grade will suffer. You do not need to clear the classes with me ahead of time that you will miss nor offer any explanation. However, if you miss more than two, no explanation will help you. In other words, you are adults, you can manage your own attendance and deal with the consequences.

Research hours. You must spend 30 hours outside the classroom meeting with your faculty mentor and doing research work that the faculty mentor assigns. The faculty mentors and students should meet regularly to discuss the research being conducted and the student’s progress. In addition to these meetings, students must engage in fieldwork, either on their own or with the faculty mentor or with other research team members. Twice during the course the faculty mentor will provide the instructor with your grade based on the quantity and the quality of your work.

Journal reflections. You will compile an electronic journal comprised of your reflections on the readings, class discussions, and your research activities with the faculty mentor. You will submit a hard copy of your journal twice during the course.

Group Presentations. Working in small groups, and with guidance from your faculty mentor and course instructor, you will practice designing and using community-based research methods to address a real world issue in Orange County or in the international community. You will make a mid-term and final group presentation on this work.



Guidelines for journal reflections:

  • A journal is NOT a work log of tasks, events, times and dates. It should present highlights of your experiences articulating the sights, sounds, smells, concerns, insights, doubts, fears, and critical questions about issues, people, and, most importantly, yourself in the research process.
  • Honesty is a necessary ingredient of successful journals.
  • Write freely. Grammar/spelling should not be stressed in your writing until the final draft that you submit.
  • Write an entry right after each visit. If you cannot write a full entry the same day of your visit, make sure to jot down random thoughts, and images until you can return to the journal no later than in a day or two when you can expand your notes into colorful verbal pictures.
  • You will often want to use a two-column format that allows you to state on one side what you observed and on the other side, what you think about what you observed.
  • A series of guiding questions are included week by week to help you incorporate what you are learning in class into your journal.

For other insights about keeping a journal please go to



Guidelines for mid-term presentation in class
(10 minutes of presentation and 5 minutes of Q&A)

Written and oral progress reports should have the following components:

  1.  Description of the project’s research objectives in your own words, not those of the mentor from the project proposal.
  2. The research mentor’s hypothesis or research question(s), and/or yours
  3.  Methods used in the research project in your own words.
  4.  Progress Report for group and for each group member:
    [Each individual answers the questions below and submits them together with the group presentation].
  • What is your specific job?
  • What have you accomplished so far?
  • What did you do well?
  • What do you think you could have done better?
  • Each person should submit no more than one page.
  1. Apply relevant readings from course and mentor’s readings.

Not everyone in the group has to make a formal presentation, but we need to hear from each member of the group at some point, either during the presentation, question and answer period, or discussion.


Guidelines for final presentation
(15 minutes for each group of formal presentation, with 5 minutes of Q&A)

This presentation focuses on your learning experiences and accomplishments throughout the quarter, working on the course work and the mentor’s research project. Make sure to answer all these questions and to include relevant knowledge from the course and mentor’s readings:

  • What is the problem you are addressing and who cares about it?
  • What have other people done before you in this problem space?
  • What methods did you use to work on this problem? Specifically,
    • What did each person do in the project?
    • What did you accomplish?
    • What were your challenges?
  • What did you learn as individuals, as a group, and as researchers that you didn’t (and couldn’t) have known before you set out to do this work?

Demonstrate in your answers to the above questions that you have learned how to:

  • apply theories and methods of community-based research to your mentor’s research project and your individual experience in that project
  • analyze community contributions to research processes and products
  • evaluate how research contributes to community problem solving

Each student must also submit (via DropBox!!!! Not In person, and NOT together):

  • What is your specific job?
  • What have you accomplished so far?
  • What did you do well?
  • What do you think you could have done better?
  • How well do you think each of your teammates did? PLEASE BE HONEST.

Again, I expect these to be no more than one page.


Randy Stoecker (2013). Research Methods for Community Change: A Project-Based Approach. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. ISBN 978-1-4129-9405-7

Bonnie Stone Sunstein & Elizabeth Chiseri-Strater. FieldWorking: Reading and Writing Research. Bedford/St. Martin’s. –You will not need to buy this, because we will use only a small part of it, which I will scan and put in the course dropbox. However, it is a good book, and you may choose to buy it anyway.

Additional materials will be provided online. All readings (and viewings) should be completed before class so that you are prepared to participate actively in class discussions.

Course Schedule

Wk Topics Key Questions Readings and Assignments




Orientation and Introduction

M: Introduction of course and each other.

W: Short lecture on CBPR.Class Discussion. Meet some potential mentors.

What is the purpose of research? What are the types of research on social and public problems? What does it mean to do community-based research? How do you ensure ethical engaged research?


Stoecker: Chapter 1, “But I Don’t Do Research,” pp. 1-23, and Appendix B about research ethics, pp 245-254.







Comparing Traditional and Community-Based Research Models

M: Overview of PAR

W:  Meet some potential mentors, form into research teams.


What are relative strengths and weaknesses of community-based versus traditional research? What are important processes and values that underlie community-based research? How is power located in research activities? What are institutional barriers to effective and successful community-based research? Stoecker:   Chapter 2: “The Goose Approach to Research,” pp 25-46.

Holland, B. (2006). New views of research for the 21st century: The role of engaged scholarship. In L. Silka (Ed.), Scholarship in action: Applied research and community change (pp. 1-10). Washington D.C.: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.





An Overview of Research Methods in Community Based Research

M: Project Work Day, Gillian unavailable

W: CLASS IN A DIFFERENT ROOM! (4011, one floor down)

Research Methods


What are processes for designing community-based research? What are some strategies for collecting and analyzing data in community-based research? What are the pros and con of participatory action research methods?  

QUIZ WEDNESDAY! QUIZ will cover readings and lectures (slides in dropbox) from weeks one and two. But do your readings for this week anyway, as you will be more prepared for class discussion.

(Class was cancelled on Wednesday due to illness)



Understanding and Valuing Community Knowledge

M: Lecture

W: Project Work Day, Gillian available in her office (DBH 5084)

Extra credit opportunity through OC Working Together

How do you structure a diagnostic research process using a stakeholder or core group? What strategies for diagnostic research might you use in your projects?

What are challenges to diagnostic research you expect you might see in your projects?


FieldWorking: Chapter 1

FieldWorking Part 2







Planning Community-Based Research

M: Lecture, Diagnosing & Prescribing

W: Group Mid-term Presentations

How do you research alternative solutions, develop criteria to evaluate solutions, and apply those criteria to choose an alternative? Cite some challenges encountered in this phase of the project. Monday:

Ch. 3. “Head and Hand Together: A Project-Based Research Model,”

Chapter 4: “Diagnosing,”

Wednesday: Submit journal reflections (#1)

Group Mid-Term Presentation



5/2, 5/4

Project Implementation

M: Lecture,Prescribing

W: Lecture, Implementing

Discussion of projects.


Why is participation and community engagement important to the research process and product? How are research products and processes improved/not improved by community involvement? Monday:

Stoecker: Prescribing

For Wednesday:

Stoecker: Implementing




5/9, 5/11

Project Work Time, Gillian available by email




Monitoring and Evaluation

M: Lecture, Evaluation

W: Quiz and Discussion of videos


What are three major questions to guide evaluation in your project? When might external evaluation be more useful than participatory evaluation? What are the challenges to evaluation research in your project? Monday:

Stoecker: Evaluation



WEDNESDAY: QUIZ on material from Quiz One through Monday 


Wednesday: Discussion will focus on the following videos:

Please be warned that some of this material is graphic. Make sure you give yourself enough time to watch in a safe space and decompress as needed.

Also, please note these are about two hours worth of things to watch. So give yourselves plenty of time to prep.

(1) Video lecture by Rev. Dr. Bernard LaFayette on “Community-Based Research: Lessons from Civil Rights Organizing” on


OPTIONAL: Super interesting but hard to watch at times, so I am not requiring it any longer
(2) Video “Crips and Bloods: Made in America” presents pre-research insights to inform the planning of community-based research:
Part 1
Part II
Part III
Part IV





Project Work Time, Gillian available in her office (DBH 5084)




M: Memorial Day Holiday

W: Class Discussion



For Wednesday: Submit your Second round of journaling
Final Monday June 6 4-6PM Final Presentations

General course information and policies

Probably the most dependable way to contact the professor is by e-mail at gillianrh AT ics… etc. Whenever you send e-mail, please make sure you include your full name in the message body and US100 in the subject line, because it is sometimes difficult to decipher student mail addresses or to find your message in the daily deluge that is my inbox. If you don’t hear back in a couple of days, try again. I don’t view this as bugging me, it helps find things that sometimes get lost in the milieux.

The class syllabus is posted on the class Web page and will be continually updated throughout the quarter. You should make it a regular habit to consult the syllabus. (Note: Because the syllabus may be updated, make sure you explicitly reload the page to ensure that you are looking at the latest version of the page. )




Other Important Class Policies:

Late Assignments
No late work will be accepted.

If you are a student with a disability (e.g., physical, learning, psychiatric, vision, hearing, etc.) and think that you might need special assistance or a special accommodation in this class or any other class, please check out the Disability Center online or visit them in person)

Counseling Center:
If you find that personal problems, career indecision, study and time management difficulties, etc. are adversely impacting your successful progress at UCI, please check out the Counseling Center online or in person at 203 student services 1.

Technology Requirements:
You need access to a personal computer (Mac or Windows) for major amounts of time for this course. You need Internet access for this course. You must be able to save word processing files in a .doc or .docx (Microsoft Word) or .pdf format for sharing and submitting files to the instructor. You are expected to have working knowledge and capability with your computer before entering this class.
 Please submit all papers and materials (unless otherwise noted in the course schedule) through EEE/ online or in person as noted in class. NO ASSIGNMENTS WILL BE ACCEPTED BY EMAIL. NO EXCEPTIONS.
Class information and announcements will be communicated through EEE and through your UCI email address. To access EEE, you will need your UCI Net ID and password. If you do not know these, please contact OIT.

Plagiarism & Cheating:
Please read and heed the following information regarding academic dishonesty. The instructor cannot and will not tolerate academic dishonesty. For more information, refer to the UCI Student Handbook. The UCI campus policy on plagiarism can also be found on the Registrar’s website, under “Academic Honesty Policy”.

In assignments that involve a partner, you will BOTH be held EQUALLY responsible for any plagiarism, regardless of who actually wrote what in the paper. So do not come to me claiming that your partner was the one who actually plagiarized. You are responsible for content with your name on it.
Everything you turn in WILL BE CHECKED FOR PLAGIARISM. The penalty for plagiarism and cheating is at a minimum to receive a 0 on the assignment and have the case reported to the Associate Dean’s office. Particularly flagrant cases may receive more severe punishment (notably failing the course).

I can not emphasize to you enough how strongly I feel about plagiarism and cheating. It will NOT be tolerated.
 If you have any questions, please come to me and ask. It is much better to ask before than to be caught after.

What is cheating?

❑ Supplying or using work or answers not your own.
❑ Providing or accepting assistance with completing assignments or examinations.
❑ Faking data or results. (particularly important as researchers!)
❑ Interfering in any way with someone else’s work.
❑ Stealing an examination or solution from the teacher.

What is plagiarism?
❑ Copying a paper from a source text without proper acknowledgment.
❑ Buying a paper from a research service or term paper mill.
❑ Turning in another student’s work with or without that student’s knowledge.
❑ Copying a paper from a source text without proper acknowledgment.
❑ Copying materials from a source text, supplying proper documentation, but leaving out quotation marks.
❑ Paraphrasing materials from a source text without appropriate documentation.
❑ Turning in a paper from a term paper website.
You should be EVER WATCHFUL about plagiarism. It can creep up in the strangest and most unexpected places, and I will be on guard at all times in search of it. In academia, the only thing we have is our ideas. If you do not respect other people’s ideas, you can not be a successful, moral, and ethical academic.

Generally, when you use ideas and/or words gathered from some other source, you will either quote that source directly or you will paraphrase or summarize that work. You MUST let the reader know which you are doing.
1. If you quote the source directly, you must
a. put quotation marks before and after that person’s words;
b. let the reader know the source by (1) putting a footnote or endnote number at the end of the quotation, or (2) putting at least the source’s name in parentheses after the quotation marks (such as when being taken from fieldwork).
2. If you paraphrase (a paraphrase is about the same length as the original, but in different words) or if you summarize (a summary is a severely shortened version of the original), you must
a. introduce the source in some manner at the beginning of the passage being paraphrased (or summarized) so that the reader can tell where your idea stops and the other person’s begins;
b. state the ideas taken from the source in your own words and your own arrangement. It is possible to plagiarize sentence patterns as well as exact words.
****A useful rule to check every time you paraphrase or summarize: if, when you are summarizing, you use more than three words in in a row from the source materials, you should think about using quotations around those words. This is not a bad thing. You want to use the quotes!
c. provide the exact source citation/reference for the ideas that you are summarizing. In formal writing, you can do this with a footnote, endnote, or other formal reference. In less formal writing, you can mark it inline or as a note at the end of your writing. Either way, make sure the reader knows where to find the source and gives proper credit to the original author.
3. You must also provide a footnote, endnote, or reference for ANY chart, graph, figure, table, summary, or other data taken directly from another source as well as anything that you state in text that comes from such a visual reference. You should also be sure to check copyright to determine whether you are even allowed to use this figure in the first place. Google and Flickr both have advanced search engines that allow you to only find images that are allowed to be used (typically with attribution through Creative Commons or another similar body).

For example, the text here on plagiarism has been generously borrowed and slightly modified from the UTC Center for Advisement and Student Success. Likewise, the course materials have been replicated over the years from previous courses I have taught as well as those of Yunan Chen, David Redmiles, and Paul Dourish.