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2 Qualitative Methods

1. Individual Depth Interviews


◦ - known as in-depth interviews
◦ - extended discussions between a subject and an
interviewer characterized by extensive probing
and open-ended questions
◦ - conducted on one-on-one basis between the
subjects and a highly skilled interviewer.
◦ - target key informants, opinion leaders or others
with special position.
2. Focus Group Discussions
2 Qualitative Methods
2. Focus Group Discussions
◦ - short discussions led by a moderator in which a small
group of subjects (5-12) talk in depth about a defined list
of topics of interest.
◦ - the grouping of participants is homogenous in nature to
assure that participants possess common characteristics.
◦ - capitalize on group dynamics and allow a small group of
participants to be guided by a skilled moderator into
increasing levels of focus and depth on the key issues of
the research topic.
◦ - informal with free interaction and open sharing of ideas
and these should be recorded to allow analysis at the
later tine.
◦ - 1 ½- 2 hour discussion
When to Use Individual Depth
Interviews
- 1. Complex subject matter and
knowledgeable respondent.

◦ Example – A study among physicians on their


attitude and practices regarding the treatment of
a certain disease using a newly discovered
medicine.
When to Use Individual Depth Interviews
2. Highly sensitive matter.

◦ Example – A study among women who had a


tubal ligation regarding their feelings about
sexuality.
When to Use Individual Depth Interviews
3. Geographically dispersed respondent.

◦ Example – A study among population policy


makers in eight countries regarding their reaction
to a document on child spacing and maternal
health.
When to Use Individual Depth Interviews
4. Peer Pressure.

◦ Example – A study among male teenagers to


explore their attitudes about sexually responsible
behavior.
When to Use Focus Group
- used in social-science discipline
- society, marketing, public health, social
welfare education, psychology and others.
Reasons why they use Focus Group
- good at eliciting the beliefs and opinions of
the group
- interaction of respondents will generally
stimulate richer responses and allow new
and valuable thoughts to emerge
- easy and inexpensive to organize and can
be completed more quickly than a series of
depth interviews
- the researcher can observe the discussion
and gain first-hand insight into the
participants ‘ behaviors, attitude, language
and feelings
Issues Individual Depth Interview Focus Group
Group Interaction Likely to be limited or non- Interaction of respondents
productive may stimulate a rich
response (new or valuable
thoughts)
Peer Pressure Inhibit responses and Valuable in challenging the
hinder the meaning of linkage of participants and
results revealing conflicting
opinions
Sensitivity of Subject Matter Respondents would be Not so sensitive that
unwilling to talk openly in a respondents will temper
group responses or withhold
information
Depth of Individual Response per individual is Participants can say all that
Response desirable as with complex is relevant in less than ten
subject matter and very minutes
knowledgeable
Analysis of Focus Group Discussion
Data
Things to remember during data collection:
1. Refine your focus
2. Reassess central questions
3. Review Transcripts
4. Record insights and summarize your reflections
after each focus group
5. Review similar studies
6. Play with metaphors, analogies and concepts
After data collection:
- develop Coding categories by following the these steps.
1. Order focus group transcripts and other information
chronologically.
2. Number each line of the transcripts so you will know
where specific responses came from.
3. Review all your data at least twice during your
undisturbed periods.
4. Conduct initial coding by generating numerous
categorical codes as you read the responses.
After data collection:
- develop Coding categories by following the these steps.
5. Label data that are related without worrying about the
variety of categories.
6. Write notes to yourself, listing ideas or relationships you
noticed.
7. Watch for special vocabulary.
If coding for the first time:
1. Print transcripts for different groups (students,
faculty, administration) on different color paper.
2. You can use one large sheet of newsprint for
each focus group question, dividing each sheet into
a section for each group.
3. locate noteworthy responses, cut them out,
group them with similar comments and tape them
to newsprint.
If coding for the first time:
4. Use one piece of tape and apply it lightly, you
will rearrange comments as new insights and
pattern emerge.
5. After you complete each question, write a
summary comparing the groups
6. Rest for two days and reexamine it again to see if
you have new insights.
Some Tips:
- During focused coding, eliminate, combine or subdivide
coding categories and look for repeating ideas and larger
themes that connect codes.
Repeating ideas are the same ideas expressed by different
respondents.
Theme – a larger topic that organizes or connects a group of
repeating ideas.

-Try to limit final codes to between 30 and 50.


- Make a list that assigns each code an abbreviation and
description after you developed coding categories.
Common Types of Coding
(Bogdan and Biklen, 1998)
1. Setting/ Context codes
◦ - provide background information on the setting,
topic or subjects.

2. Defining the Situation codes


- Categorize the world view of respondents and
how they see themselves in relation to a setting
or your topic.
Common Types of Coding
(Bogdan and Biklen, 1998)

3. Respondent Perspective codes


◦ - capture how respondents define a particular
aspect of a setting.

4. Respondents’ ways of thinking about


people and objects codes
- Capture how they categorize and view each
other, outsiders and objects .
Common Types of Coding
(Bogdan and Biklen, 1998)

5. Process codes
◦ - categorize sequences of events and changes
over time.

6. Activity codes
- Identify recurring informal and formal types of
behavior.
Common Types of Coding
(Bogdan and Biklen, 1998)

7. Event codes
◦ - directed at unique happenings in the setting or
lives of respondents.

8. Strategy codes
- Relate to ways people accomplish things.
Common Types of Coding
(Bogdan and Biklen, 1998)

9. Relationship and Social Structure codes


◦ - tell you about alliances, friendships and
adversaries as well as about more formally
defined relations like social roles.

10. Method codes


- Identify your research approaches, procedures,
dilemmas and breakthroughs.
Controlling for Bias
1. When conducting a content analysis, evaluators
review documents and code them in terms of
themes. The coders must be trained. Having two
people read and code the same set of documents
helps better control for individual differences in
perceptions.
Controlling for Bias
2. Triangulate – to draw from several data sources,
methods, investigations or theories to check out
the consistency of different data sources, such as
comparing and cross-checking the consistency of
information derived at different times and by
different means within qualitative methods to
control potential bias.
DATA Interpretation
- characterized as the reflective, integrative and
explanatory part of dealing with the data.
- the researcher must explain the meaning of the
data to others.
- interpretation requires more conceptual and
integrative thinking than data analysis and involves
abstracting important understanding from detailed
and complex data.
DATA Interpretation
- the focus is on what is important in the data, why
is it important and what can be learned from it.
Things to remember in data
interpretation:
1. Consider the type of study used.