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What does Qualitative Research mean to me - Essay Example

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This essay is intended to establish deeper insights in to the meaning of qualitative research and will give a definition of qualitative research and contrast it with quantitative research. A discussion on the tools, processes, and people involved will then follow. …
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What does Qualitative Research mean to me
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What does Qualitative Research mean to me

The essay will ultimately conclude on the importance of qualitative research Introduction The selection of appropriate approach to be employed in a research is typically preceded by issue selection and a paradigm. Flick (2009) defines a paradigm as the entire construction of viewpoint, standards and processes within which research occurs. Maxwell (2005) defines qualitative study as a process of investigation of human and societal issues that are focused on coming up with an intricate holistic picture obtained from a natural setting. Quantitative research usually takes the approach of studying the mathematical significance of data collected. Qualitative research on the other hand, takes into account the social and human aspect of research by looking into how people’s actions, attitudes, and behavior affect the research and its outcomes (Patton, 2004). Discussion   Qualitative research is concerned with the examination of patterns, which can be traced in the data collected which are usually reflected through the participant’s actions. The qualitative researcher is interested in the presentation of data in a manner that would reflect the participant’s attitudes and feelings concerning the subject matter. The objective of the qualitative research then is the discovery of patterns emerging after close observation, meticulous recording and a thoughtful analysis of the issue studied. Qualitative research usually asks the question what and why. The researcher is employed in the search for something as well as the lack of it. Paradoxes and inconsistencies bin the explanation of people’s responses toward an issue (Silverman, 2009). Qualitative research represents the most used type of study on societal issues. Politics makes use of it to try out new strategies, and to keep abreast of public sentiment, corporations use it to evaluate their products and if advertising is creating the desired impact. Qualitative researchers are investigators in a variety of perspectives given that they search for clues and study societal and personal drive by means of the myriad of qualitative techniques. Tools Qualitative study in most instances makes use of individual depth interviews and focus groups. In some instances, a mix of methods such as group interviews and divergence groups may be made use of. Qualitative analysis aims at explaining behavior and sentiment through the development of dialogue intended to draw out people’s perspectives concerning a particular issue in a natural way. It is important that the researcher recognize their role in the discussion process by guiding his question asking to ensure that there is no bias in discussion with respondents. While the researcher ought to avoid a bias in the introduction of the topic, he also has to ensure that his questions offer specific hints and key words in order not to make the study a pure regurgitation of previous studies (Flick, 2009). The qualitative researcher ought to be capable of probing and challenging the subjects in order that true perspectives are brought out. A good drafting of qualitative research questions is essential if reliable and accurate results are to be found. A good researcher would be able to draft questions that will elicit novel responses, which they may not have had a chance to air in previous studies. The Researcher The qualitative researcher should listen to his respondent, analyses the respondent and his answers then ... Read More
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