MSC 1002 H: Overview of Methods in Practices & Contexts

This course is intended to allow students to explore a variety of methodologies to understand how different ways of knowing influence what we know and how we are able to understand our world.

Learning Objectives:

At the end of this course students should be able to demonstrate:

  • Students will be exposed to a range of contexts and methods for ‘ways of knowing’ and will be encouraged to critically engage with methods across research, design and implementation spectrums.
  • Students will be able to demonstrate a breadth of awareness of issues and components of methods across the translational research landscape.


Course Description

The multidisciplinary nature of translating knowledge between domains, engaging with patients, researchers, clinicians, industry government and academic stakeholders necessitates that students are familiar with a broad range of approaches and frameworks used in different practices and contexts for research, problem-solving and implementation.

This course explores the methods through which we acquire and make apparent knowledge–“the ways of Knowing”.  The course provides an overview of the range of methodologies and methods between science, translation, implementation and evidence-based medicine involved in our understanding and framing of research and innovation.  The key questions asked by this course are: how do we go about acquiring knowledge, which procedures can we use to acquire it; and how do we choose which procedures to use in specific contexts to achieve translational outcomes?  The material will cover qualitative, design and quantitative methods of acquiring, verifying, translating and evaluating knowledge from early stakeholder engagement to implementation science.

Students will read relevant literature on various facets of the translational process and will engage in hands-on exercises to build practical knowledge.  Students will work individually and in groups to build skills in areas like interviewing, sketching, ideation, and qualitative ‘user’ testing to gather evidence for iterative improvement of problem-solving designs. Students will be asked to consider various issues and critically assess strategies and methods as significant areas for interdisciplinary collaboration and interaction for better understanding how knowledge generation and its application can lead to new and better ways of improving health care delivery and care.



The course overall will be composed of thirteen 2.5hr sessions (32.5hrs total).  The content will be divided into two thematic parts: Ways of knowing I & II.  The first six sessions will constitute “Ways of knowing I” and will be composed of topics and issues related to quantitative research methods.  Domain experts in quantitative methodologies will be invited as guest presenters to help provide depth to the session content. “Ways of knowing I” will explore and problematize ethics, peer-review and understanding quantitive studies. The second half of the course, “Ways of Knowing II” will focus on qualitative and design research methods, issues and facilitation.  The sessions will look at recruiting and engaging with people during interviews and focus groups as the methods for generating and collecting data.

This single term course consists of thirteen 2.5hr sessions (32.5hrs total) generally structured as:

  • a seminar
  • followed by a guest speaker discussion or workshop.

Teaching Team:



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