The Methodology of the Empirical Work in the Humanities

This course is part of the programme
Bachelor's study programme Cultural history (1st level)

Objectives and competences

The students will develop the ability to:
- formulate research questions, to find archival sources and to perform independent research;
- analyze sources and literature;
- formulate research findings in a unified form;
- choose proper methodological approaches.


No prerequits are required.


Students will be acquainted with the development of historiography in the 20th century and the methodological and epistemological issues that have been the subject of in-depth discussions in scientific community. An important place in the implementation of the course will be devoted to the practical presentation of quantitative and qualitative methodological approaches, which students will then be using during seminars and individual research work. Quantitative methods will focus on the field of demography (types of resources, selection and analysis of data pre-modern and modern population statistics). The selection of qualitative methods will be made in accordance with the students’ propositions, ranging from classical archival sources, sources of oral history to other types of sources (illustrations, photographs).

Intended learning outcomes

Students will acquire:
- an overview of the development of historiography and research approaches;
- an overview of the types of sources and gathering materials for the study of history;
- an overview of the organization of archives services in Slovenia and in the neighboring countries.
Students are able to:
- use qualitative and methodological approaches for independent work;
- analyze documentary and archival sources;
- formulate research questions;
- independently solve specific methodological and epistemological problems.


  • Burke, Peter (1993), Revolucija v francoskem zgodovinopisju: Anali 1929–89. Ljubljana, Škuc, (selected chapters) Catalogue
  • Burke, Peter (2001), Eyewitnessing. The Uses of Images as Historical Evidence, London, Reaktion Books, (selected chapters) Catalogue
  • Hudson, Pat (2000), History by Numbers: An Introduction to Quantitative Approaches, Bloomsbury, Hodder Arnold Publication, (selected chapters) Catalogue E-version
  • Malačič, Janez (2006), Demografija. Teorija, analiza, metode in modeli, Ljubljana, Copis, (selected chapters)
  • Thompson, Paul (2000), The Voice of the Past. Oral History, Oxford University Press, (selected chapters).Catalogue E-version
  • Selected qualitative and and quantitative archival, newspaper and fieldwork sources, professional online publications.


Seminar paper and oral exam. 30 % / 70 %

Lecturer's references

1) Kalc A., “In this way we can feel closer”: audio letters between Australia and Trieste/Trst, Studia Historica Slovenica, 2015, št. 1, str. 201–220,
2) Kalc A., Poročne matične knjige kot vir za preučevanje dinamičnih in strukturnih vidikov urbanih migracij. Povijesni prilozi, 2015, god. 34, 49, str. 315–329,
3) Kalc A. (D. Žerjal), Il dovere della memoria: una testimonianza sull'antifascismo sloveno nella Venezia Giulia, (Collana Centro Gasparini). Gradisca d'Isonzo: Centro isontino di ricerca e documentazione storica e sociale "Leopoldo Gasparini"; Gorizia: Fondazione, Sklad Dorče Sardoč, 2011, 159 str.,
4) Kalc A., Tržaško prebivalstvo v 18. stoletju: priseljevanje kot gibalo demografske rasti in družbenih sprememb, (Knjižnica Annales Majora). Koper: Univerza na Primorskem, Znanstveno-raziskovalno središče, Založba Annales: Zgodovinsko društvo za južno Primorsko; Trst: Narodna in študijska knjižnica, 2008, 344 str.,
5) Kalc A., Demografija mest pred moderno statistiko, s posebnim poudarkom na 18. stoletju in vprašanju urbanega priseljevanja. Acta Histriae, 2006, let. 14, št. 2, str. 363–392.