Qualitative research is about assessment and generation of theory information, elucidation of research and the advancement of that data to the appropriate conclusions. Qualitative research may rely on multiple modes of data and investigation of people in particular situations, in their expected environment. Basic components of qualitative research essential for understanding are interpretation from the participants’ point of view and interpretation from the participants’ subjective perspectives. The role of an objective outsider is just as important for the correct analysis. The three methods of qualitative research that I have chosen are phenomenological, case study, and grounded theory. Phenomenological Research
The phenomenological qualitative research process is when the researcher endeavors to understand and illustrate how one or more contributors experience a phenomenon. According to Creswell (2009), the phenomenon is a lived experience and the researcher attempts to gain access to the contributor’s subjective experience. The type of question for phenomenological research would be about the experience, and the question would be open-ended so that the question can lead to further inquiry. A designed form of the questionnaire as noted by Hopwood (2004), written by the researcher and may be used in a number of applied ranges of circumstances. Hopwood (2004) reported that semi-structured interviews to be used in multiple-method case study which will establish reliability. Validity of account would be used in this kind of method example.
Triangulation across time and response formats will add reliability. Ethnographic research of the qualitative process focuses on the discovery and description of the culture of a group of people and a cultural event. The shared beliefs, practices, and values a group uses to understand the world they live in. Norms of the culture are unwritten rules relative to group behavior. And, according to Christensen, Johnson, and Turner (2010), emic perspective is the insider’s viewpoint and etic view is the objective outsider’s opinion and viewpoint. Christensen et al. (2010) posit that data collection and analysis is accomplished by in-depth interviews, and open-ended questions. Significant statements from the interviews are extracted and organized into themes. The report writing for phenomenological qualitative research process design is written in a narrative form, and includes details and descriptions of the contributors in the study. This is the time for validity member checking where the researcher requests the contributors of the significant statements in the summary are accurate and truthfully represent the information they provided as reported by Groenwald (2004).
Case Study Research
Case study qualitative research design process is characterized by the intensity and detailed explanation of the information. A case study is a bounded system (person, or group) which refers to a holistic process which endorses interrelationships among the elements encompassing the situation. The primary question in the instance of a case study of qualitative research process design is “What are the characteristics of this single case or of these comparison cases”, as indicated by Christiansen et al. (2010). The problem that the researcher is focusing on is similar to therapy for abused children as reported by Murphy (2009), another example is given by Shepherd and Edelmann (2007) the test of the self-medication hypothesis for patients encountering social phobias. The sample size for the case study method is many sources as well as various methods of data collection.
The forms of data collection could be questionnaires, test results, archival records, in-depth interviews, and documents. Christensen et al. (2010) states, “Contextual and life history data are also collected in case study research to contextualize the case and to aid in understanding the causal trajectories that might have influenced the case”, (p. 375). If quantitative data are also collected with qualitative information, this is identified as mixed methods. There are instances when quantitative data is needed to add significance and depth to the analysis and reporting of the case study. When a researcher is interested in understanding one individual case, the study is called intrinsic, and for a more general understanding the researcher would use an instrumental case. The theoretical explanation is needed when the answers are more important generally than one particular case study. The case study analysis is conducted separately, but those elements are also analyzed as one critique.
Data collection for the case study is by interviews, sometimes using document forms and using multiple sources of information and observations according to Creswell (2009). Casing in qualitative research are the ideas and evidence that are mutually interdependent according to Neuman (2005). In other words, making the case brings the information or data and theory collectively together. Relative to data analysis and report writing for case study research, a cross-case analysis is typical by various cases being compared and contrasted while the researcher is studying relationships, similarities, and patterns as well as differences. The purpose of the case study report reveals the insider view and an objective view. Yin (2008) details the ultimate information for reporting for qualitative research is a rich and holistic description of the case and the context.
Grounded Theory Research
Grounded theory for qualitative research is dissimilar from phenomenology and case study research as the number of members is at least 20 to 60 members according to Creswell (2009) and most analysis are done through a coding system. Christensen et al. (2010) presents a clear evaluation of the ‘how’ and the ‘why’ something operates. Babchuk (2011) proceeded to explain that the researcher has four key characteristics of grounded theory: recently constructed grounded theory ought to fit the data; the theory must present support of the phenomenon; the theory should have some generality: and the theory contributes to particular hegemony of the phenomenon. Data collection for grounded theory research can be any data collection, but is usually interviews, followed by observations by the researcher.
An interesting concept of multi-tasking by the researcher is to collect pieces of data, build reporting on theory while simultaneously and continuously observing to verify or validate his or her findings. This multi-tasking is apparent theoretical sensitivity. The sensitivity is based on the perception of what data is important while developing the theory, if additional data is needed, and when to apply the supplementary data. Deriving primary definition, features and body from Burck (2005) the grounded theory relies on a three-stage data analysis procedure. The first step is open coding that is the researcher analyzing information from the collection of data and indicates that this is significant information; the researcher also creates an abstract document for later analysis. Step two is axial coding whereby the researcher is organizing the information so that the phenomenon leads to another. The third step is selective coding that is adding the finishing touches on the researcher’s account of the phenomenon.
Qualitative research studies the meaning of one’s lived experience and the only reliable source is a person who experiences the phenomenon. There is no single fact; each has his or her own reality. Qualitative researchers assume that research is context bound but that patterns and theories can be explicated to develop a profound understanding of a situation or phenomenon. The key to qualitative research is to understand the phenomenon of interest from the participants’ perspectives, not the researcher’s. According to Burck (2005), one of the most important aspects of the research process is the research question: whether qualitative or quantitative. Burck (2005) also recommends that we find other sources for more information on the research question. The question needs to be precise in qualitative research otherwise too much detail is related by the members.
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