Qualitative Research and Theories/Paradigms of Research
Over the past 16 years, only two building permits for new housing construction have been issued in Sedgwick County, Colorado. This is consistent with the depopulation (particularly of younger persons) and economic diminution that is attributed to a declining rainfall since the 1970s. These are quantitative details. It is unclear how much of the depopulation was due to perceived opportunities elsewhere, to copycat or fad behavior, and to perceived change in local economic opportunity. Why is qualitative analysis more likely to identify the leading cause of Sedgwick County’s out-migration than quantitative methods? Which characteristics of qualitative research most influenced your response to this question?
In the GCU library, locate four empirical studies you have not used before on a topic you are interested in researching (Use the Empirical Research Checklist to determine if a study is empirical). List the theoretical foundation and Permalink for each study, and add the studies to your RefWorks list. Then determine a theoretical foundation (laws, theories, models, concepts) for a study that you might like to research for your dissertation. Why did you select this foundation? Finally, comment on other learners’ theoretical foundations and if/how they can be improved.
Designing Qualitative Studies; Relationships Among Researchers, Subjects, and Institutions
Critics of qualitative research often posit that it is subjective due to the fact that the researcher collects the data. Therefore, the researcher’s own prior experiences, prejudices, and attitudes may bias the data, and therefore, the results of the study. How would you respond to someone who presents this criticism to you?
Drawing on your prior knowledge, the studies and literature research you have completed, and the readings for this topic, reflect on the role of ethics in the research process. Discuss strategies a doctoral learner or researcher might employ to protect participants and the institutions (GCU/data collection site) in a study. Explain any concerns/uncertainties you have regarding ethical conduct during dissertation research.
Generating and Collecting Qualitative Data: Procedures and Ethical Considerations
Suppose you are interested in the behaviors of college professors that have high ratings of student satisfaction. The research goal is to identify the teaching behaviors of these successful professors so that these behaviors can be built into the curricula of doctoral leadership programs. The sample for this study will consist of 10 randomly selected professors who received high end-of-course survey scores. You want to use a case study design that requires at least two sources of data. What data collection instruments will be the most appropriate to address this topic? Why?
It is not unusual for researchers to use a convenience sample for their study. Consider a study in which the researcher would like to determine how parents working with their children on homework influence the child’s school grades. The researcher may consider recruiting friends and relatives to participate in your study because it will be easier to obtain their permission for data collection. What might be some of the limitations of this sampling approach? What are some potential ethical implications to using a convenience sample?
Approaches to Collecting and Analyzing Data in Qualitative Research: Grounded Theory and Phenomenology
Consider the Ute Mountain Utes, a Native American tribe in Colorado. Tourism is a key part of that group’s income. Suppose a national economic problem similar to the economic collapse of late 2008 greatly reduced tourism and derived income for this population. Would a grounded theory or a phenomenological approach be the more effective means to understand the influences of that event 5 years later? Why?
Suppose you are interested in how children with severe autism experienced the receipt of special education assistance in public schools. This population is characterized by underdevelopment of social cognition, social skills, and language skills. What is the best method for collecting data to answer your research question? Why is this method best? How would you describe the research design?
Approaches to Qualitative Research: Semiotics and Hermeneutics, Narrative Inquiry, and Content Analysis
A children’s song and dance, Ring around the Rosie, is traceable back to at least 1790 in the United States and 1796 in Germany. It was widely held that it was a reference to one of the last outbreaks of the bubonic plague (The Black Death that struck England in the 1660s). Some folklorists disputed the connection, though this belief in the song and dance’s origin was widespread. Assume you were alive in 1790 in England and attempted to find the origins of that song and dance. Would you have chosen narrative inquiry, content analysis, or historic analysis as your methodology? Why?
A researcher is planning to conduct a narrative study on the way non-traditional learners define their social role on the college campus. After this, the researcher would then construct his/her narrative of the study, using such storytelling conventions as scene, characters, and plot. Discuss the data collection instruments appropriate for this study. How would a narrative approach differ from a phenomenological approach for this topic?
Approaches to Qualitative Research: Descriptive and Case Studies
The Columbine school shootings were one of the first and most widely known attacks of violence in history. As a discrete event in time with a fairly clear beginning and end, it might be studied using the case study method. Would a case study remain the best approach to a search for any long-lasting consequences of that violent episode? Why or why not?
Consider the following research question: Are business professors, education professors, or psychology professors more popular among doctoral learners at a 4-year university?
To answer the research question, you might observe throughout a semester the attendance rates for a key course in each of the groups; review end-of-course surveys and compare average instructor ratings among the groups; or compare the number of cards, letters, and gifts received by faculty members in each group at the end of a semester.
Which of these methods is most likely to bring about the desired results? Why? What does your consideration of these options tell you about operationalization?
Establishing Validity and Reliability in Qualitative Research
The GCU dissertation template describes several ways to establish reliability research studies. A researcher increases the statistical power of a quantitative study by increasing the sample size. This reduces the chance that a real effect (rather than an apparent effect brought about by sampling variability) will be overlooked. Does triangulation offer the qualitative methodologist a similar reduction in the likelihood of overlooking important results? Why or why not?
The validity of a study refers to the strategies a researcher uses to ensure the data collected are true and certain. What are the steps GCU doctoral learners must take to ensure the validity of a qualitative research study? Give examples.
Organizing, Analyzing, and Presenting Qualitative Data: Reporting Qualitative Research Results
Qualitative researchers can use questionnaires to collect data. Suppose a qualitative researcher is interested in the behaviors of physicians that have high ratings of patient satisfaction. The research goal is to identify the behaviors of successful physicians so that these behaviors can be built into the curricula of medical preparation programs. The researcher undertakes a case study and uses three instruments to gather data.
1. First, the researcher gives a likert-scale questionnaire to patients of a select group of physicians to determine the perceived behaviors that lend to higher levels of satisfaction.
Second, the researcher reviews video recordings of physician-patient encounters from 10 physicians who have been rated highly by patients in a reliable satisfaction survey.
3. Third, the researcher interviews patients to glean more detail about physical behaviors that improve patient satisfaction.
How might these data be analyzed separately and then triangulated as the researcher presents the results?
Focus on Research:
Reflect on three of the articles you have chosen for the literature review assignment. How will these articles help you proceed from here?
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