Tips for formulating interview questions

Asking questions of interviewees in ways that help them tell their stories is something of an art. It goes without saying that it is good practice to be well-prepared for interviews. This includes thinking about the physical setting for an interview and the technology one will need to record an interview. And there are so many choices: what will be used — a digital recorder, cell phone, tablet, pen and paper, telephone or synchronous online meeting room? If you are using a digital technology for the first time, it is always useful to test it, and check that the file form can be easily downloaded and made accessible for transcribing. This is because some digital recorders do not have a means to download files. Yet even before setting up the interview and asking the first question, one needs to have thought about the topics one wants to learn about, how these relate to the research questions posed, and the kinds of questions that might elicit information about those topics. In this blog post, I discuss tips for formulating interview guides. Continue reading “Tips for formulating interview questions”

11 thinking “tricks” when analyzing data

Kathryn Roulston

A number of authors who write about qualitative research have talked about “thinking” as it relates to doing qualitative research (Freeman, 2017; Jackson & Mazzei, 2012; Saldaña, 2015); and in particular doing qualitative data analysis. One older source that I still find helpful is Tricks of the trade: How to think about your research while you’re doing it, by sociologist Howard Becker (1998). Trained in the symbolic interactionist tradition, Becker outlines a number of strategies, what he calls “tricks,” that qualitative researchers can use to make sense of their data. Continue reading “11 thinking “tricks” when analyzing data”

Examining the archives

This year I have been involved in a program that introduces faculty to archival collections at my institution, the University of Georgia (UGA). I have been learning about how archival collections are organized and catalogued, how to locate information that is useful for research purposes, and what to do next. I have a lot to learn! Continue reading “Examining the archives”

Call for proposals: Southern History of Education Society

The Southern History of Education Society will be holding their annual conference March 10-11, 2017 at the University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia. There is still time to submit an abstract to the conference. See the proposal guidelines below. For more information about the conference, go to Southern History of Education Society 2017 Annual Conference Continue reading “Call for proposals: Southern History of Education Society”

Qualitative Research Journals

There are a growing number of journals that publish qualitative studies in particular disciplines. One of the oldest of these is Qualitative Sociology, established in 1978. Since that time, journals have been founded that focus on research in education (International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, founded in 1988), health (Qualitative Health Research, founded in 1991), market research (Qualitative Market Research, founded in 1998), social work (Qualitative Social Work, founded in 2002), psychology (Qualitative Research in Psychology, founded in 2004), and organizations and management (Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management, founded in 2006), among others. Continue reading “Qualitative Research Journals”

QualPage relaunched

It has taken longer than I had anticipated… but I am excited to announce the re-launch of QualPage. Founded in the early by 1990s by Judy Norris in Alberta, Canada, QualPage was one of the earlier websites to provide links to resources about qualitative research. When Judy Norris retired in 2003,  Professor Judith Preissle from the University of Georgia managed the website for some years, before she retired in 2013. Over the last year, with the assistance of Erika Cooper, I’ve been working to revamp the website and relaunch it for qualitative researchers out there. You will find new links, and additional resources. We hope that you will enjoy what the site has to offer, and look forward to posting more news and links for all our qualitative colleagues…

Enjoy!

Kathy Roulston