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Qualitative Research - Book Report/Review Example

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This is the process through which Sally Holland underwent when she studied the relationship and interactions between social workers and parents as the former acts as an assessor in deciding whether to entrust a child in their parent's care or not. Through 16 assessments of social workers in two different centers, Hillside Family Centre and City social services department (CSSD), Holland was able to generate the finding that social workers' positive or negative assessment of a parent or parents primarily depends on the latter's ability to verbalize and articulate clearly the current situation s/he and her/his child is in. Positive assessment is given when the parent is able to verbalize effectively what the social workers expect the parents to realize, and negative assessments are given to those who remain passive or unresponsive to social workers' efforts to assess the parents vis--vis their relationship with their respective child/children.
These assessments were made through semi-structured interviews between the researcher and the social workers. Emergent themes from these in-depth interviews were analyzed using the qualitative analysis software NUD*IST. Concept studied in this qualitative research is the in-depth assessment of social workers of the children's respective parents, while three indicators were identified as influential to the concept of the study: (1) parent-related factors (i.e., parenting skills and relationship between parents); (2) ability of parents to change their behavior and lifestyle; and (3) verbal interactions between the social workers and parent/s (152).
Findings from the interviews helped Holland create a conceptual framework of how assessments are developed and generated in the two centers from which social workers were interviewed. While several themes emerged as major illustrations of the concept of the study, the indicator that fully described the crux of the study was through the parents' verbal interaction with the social workers.
Holland's findings, then, were all dependent on this main indicator of social workers' assessment of the parent's "fitness" to rear the child. Within this primary indicator, sub-indicators were found to have influence over the social workers' parent assessments. The researcher identified four sub-indicators through which effective verbal interaction is based on: cooperation and commitment, explanation and plausibility, articulacy, and parent's attitude towards the social worker and the assessment process.
These sub-indicators are linked together, in a manner that influences the verbal interaction of the parent with the social workers. In cooperation and commitment, Holland found out from the interviews that parents are favorably assessed if they showed willingness to participate in the assessment process. From the viewpoint of the social worker, showing commitment to the assessment process is a reflection of the parents' "commitment to their child" (153). Moreover, receptivity to the situation presented by the center and the social workers ...Show more
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Summary

Studying a specific social phenomenon or issue using the qualitative approach is an entirely different and unique process when compared against studies created from a quantitative approach and perspective. In qualitative research, major concepts and indicators are not pre-determined and categorized, and sometimes, the main theoretical framework is not well-developed to fully illustrate the process and nature of the phenomenon or issue being studied…
Qualitative Research
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