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Qualitative Research Methods in Psychology:

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Meng Estacio

on 24 November 2014

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Transcript of Qualitative Research Methods in Psychology:

Qualitative Research Methods in Psychology:
An introduction

What is qualitative research?
Qualitative research is a type of research that uses non- numerical data to answer a research question.

Instead of quantifying information, qualitative research is more concerned with:

Richness of description
Capturing the participants' perspectives
Exploring contexts and everyday experiences
Qualitative data collection methods
Qualitative data analysis techniques
Analysing text
Dr Emee Vida Estacio

Focus groups
Existing documents
Other creative approaches
Requires good interpersonal skills:
Active listening
Exploration, not interrogation
Things to consider when developing your interview guide:
Language used
Able to address research aims whilst considering ethics and sensitivity
Small group discussion of research topic
Moderated and facilitated
Useful for generating data quickly from different participants
When organising FGs, you need to consider:
How long the discussion will run
How many you will need to run
The group's size and composition
Participants keep a personal chronicle of events related to the research question
Can be quantitative or qualitative
Written, audio, video
Diaries are very useful in accessing individual experiences in less contrived contexts.

However, this method could be time consuming and it may be difficult to keep participants interested.
Participant observation - form of fieldwork where the researcher is immersed in the context under study (observations from first person perspective “I” or “me”).
Non-participant observation:
the researcher's observations are recorded from an outsider’s perspective.
Also known as secondary data
Examples include newspaper articles, political speeches, internet blogs/forums, recorded conversations
Can provide insights that may be difficult to obtain in other data collection circumstances
Without context, analytically restricted
World Cafe
Participatory theatre
Other creative methods
Analysing talk
Thematic analysis
Grounded theory
Interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA)
Narrative analysis
Conversation analysis
Discourse analysis

One of the most commonly used methods of qualitative analysis
Involves identifying a set of themes within a set of transcripts

Involves generation of a theory that is grounded very closely within the data collected from the study
Reverses the hypothesis-testing approach to theory development

Concerned with exploring people's lived experiences of a particular phenomenon
Assumes that people try to make sense of their experiences -- IPA explores this process and what it means to the participants

Explores plots and stories in the text
Uses narratives as a way of understanding the participant's progression in life

Used for naturally occurring talk
Looks for structures/turn taking in talk

Looks into 'discourses' and what language does
Can be used for speeches and conversation, but usually takes the context into account as well as what’s on the page.
OK. I’ll get up around six thirty, jump in the shower and hope the water pressure’s OK which it usually isn’t. I’ll leave the house about seven fifteen. At that time in the morning the traffic’s not that bad so I tend to make it to the school grounds by about quarter to eight. It can be horrendous though. They always seem to have road works going on usually at the busiest time. Typical.

Usually I’ll have lots of stuff to photocopy for my lessons so it’s best to get there earlier as there’s usually loads of people wanting the photocopier, and I like to get in quick. Then I’ll pop to the staff room for a coffee. I drink lots of it, not good I know but it gets me started [laughs]

Ohkaaa::y, um...
 (0.6) I’ll get up around six thu::rrrty (0.4) jump in the shower and hope the water pressure’s OK ◦which it usually isn’t◦ (0.7) I’ll leave the house about (0.4) sev’n fifteen (0.2) at that time in the mornin the traffic’s not too biz= (0.2)not that bad so I tend to make (.)it to the school grounds by about quar::ter to eight (0.6) It can be orrendous though(0.2) they always seem to have road works goin on (.) usually at the busiest ti::me (0.5) typical
 urm (1.5)

Usually I’ll have lots of stuff to photocopy (0.2)for my lessons(0.2) so it’s best to get there earlier as there’s usually loads of people wantin the photocopier [an] I like to get in quick(0.8)Then I’ll pop to the staff room for a coffee (0.3) ◦$drink lots of it, not good I know$◦(.) but it gets me started he he;;he

Transcribing qualitative data
Qualitative research methods cover a vast area of data collection and analysis
They can be used in conjunction with quantitative methods
They can be time consuming and complex
But they allow a much deeper, richer insight into an area of study

This method provides a flexible format that allows large group dialogue
Based on the idea that people are more open to conversations when in a relaxed environment, like in a Cafe...
An action research method
Involves participants creating and discussing photographs to catalyze positive change

(1) to encourage people to reflect and record aspects of their own identity and experience;

(2) to enable them to find personal strengths and common cause with like others through sharing and group discussion of their photographs; and

(3) to project a vision of their lives that might educate others, especially power brokers and policy makers, to better understand the realities of their condition.
Photovoice workshop
Taking pictures
Discussing pictures
Photovoice has three main goals:
Community-based action research method that uses theatre as a way to engage participants in an active discussion on issues affecting them
Based on Boal's 'Theatre of the Oppressed', this method encourages spectators to identify with the characters in the play
In the end, audience members are asked to step onto the stage and literally fill one of the character's shoes
This way, community members are able to actively reflect and explore ways to resolve the problem
How does participatory theatre work?
You are encouraged to think of other ways to generate qualitative data
This is particularly important when you are dealing with children, people with disabilities and other vulnerable groups
Thematic analysis:
Grounded theory:
Interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA):
Narrative analysis:
Conversation analysis:
Discourse analysis:
Hitler Hates Qualitative Research
Spoof on qualitative v quantitative debate
Kick Homophobia Out of Football
Blog on trichotillomania
How to organise qualitative data:
A VERY rough guide
Scribe notes from the discussion

Organise notes into ‘codes’
i.e., categorise similar aspects of your discussion notes under the same code

Make a list of all the codes and organise similar codes into ‘themes’ -- we call this 'clustering'
List your themes and sub-themes
You can also create a ‘mind-map’ to link the themes together.
INT When you are with each other, what, I mean what do you get up to? What do you do?

LOU: Like in the day or … just generally?

INT: Well ,generally, in the day, in the evening, whatever, both, all three.

LOU: Oh generally, just the typical watch telly together and then drink together before we go out and then go out, like do each other’s fake tan and stuff [laughs], so …

INT: Do you go out a lot?

LOU: Yeah, yeah, quite a lot, recently because of exams we haven’t, but then Wednesday night we had quite a big night out, so it was really good.

Interview transcript
Things students do:
Watching telly
Drinking together
Going out
Fake tan
Prioritising exams
Peer support
Time management
Prioritising exams
Managing activities
Making friends
Studying together
Drinking together
Eating out
Watching telly
Full transcript