Qualitative research methods

  • Created by: 11pyoung
  • Created on: 01-02-18 19:35
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  • Qualitative Research Methods
    • Observational research
      • Covert and overt methods
        • The advantages of covert research
          • Researchers can enter forbidden areas of research
          • The group will continue to behave normally
        • The disadvantages of covert research
          • The advantages of covert research
            • Researchers can enter forbidden areas of research
            • The group will continue to behave normally
          • If the researcher's role is revealed they may be placed in danger
          • Wrong to study groups without telling them
        • The advantages of overt observation
          • The disadvantages of overt observation
            • Researcher will initially be perceived as an outsider
            • Subjects will change their behaviour
          • Researcher may be placed in a position of trust within a group
          • Researcher able to play an open, honest role
          • Researchers can supplement their research with other methods
        • The disadvantages of overt observation
          • Researcher will initially be perceived as an outsider
          • Subjects will change their behaviour
      • Varies in terms of the extent to which the researcher gets involved with the group being studied
        • Whether the researcher is honest and tells the group about the research
      • Whether the researcher is honest and tells the group about the research
    • Carrying out ethnographic research
      • Participant observation
        • Advantages of participant observation
          • Practical issues
            • Does not take a lot of preparation to conduct
            • Able to study come groups who would not take part in other types of research
          • Ethical issues
            • Researcher in a better position to understand the needs of the subject
          • Theoretical issues
            • Experience
              • Researcher can fully join the group
            • Generating new ideas
              • Can lead to completely new ideas
            • Getting the truth
              • Researcher can see the person in action
            • Digging deep
              • Creates a close bond
            • Dynamic
              • Takes place over a period of time and allows an understanding of how changes in attitudes and behaviour take place
            • Being naturalistic
              • Easier to use concepts and language of those who are being studied
        • Disadvantages of participant observation
          • Practical issues
            • Time-consuming
          • Ethical issues
            • Researcher may need to take part in  illegal or immoral behaviour in order to fully participate within the group
          • Theoretical issues
            • Bias
              • Start to see things through the subject's eyes
            • Influence of the researcher
              • Researcher's presence may make the group's behaviour less genuine
            • Reliability and validity
              • No way of knowing objectively whether the finding of participant observations reliable and valid or not
            • Representativeness
              • Difficult to claim finding are generalisable across society
      • Non-participant observation
        • Advantages of non-participant observation
          • Bias
            • Less likely to be biased by becoming too involved with the group
          • Influencing people
            • Group may be less influenced as researcher is not partivipating
        • Disavantages of non-participant observation
          • Superficiality
            • Researcher's understanding limited because they are left on the outside
          • Altering behaviour
            • People may act differently if they know they are being watched
    • Qualitative interviewing
      • Informal, unstructured interviews
        • Supplements observational data
        • Allows a person to talk in-depth about their views
    • Focus Groups
      • A group of people gathered together by the researcher and asked to discus a particular issue
        • Provides insight into complex problems
        • Allows issues to be probed in-depth
    • Observation and participant observation in the educational context
      • The uses of observational methods
        • It is difficult for researchers to  blend in and act as studenets
      • Practical issues
        • Requirement to obtain permission
        • Role of observer is problematic in schools
          • Researcher is older than those studied
      • Ethical issues
        • DBS check is necessary before a researcher is allowed into the school
        • Anonymity must be assured
      • Theoretical issues
        • Teachers and students may behave unnaturally  and be guarded in their behaviour with the observer present

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