Conceptualising a Research and Writing a Proposal. How to evolve a budget for a Research?

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Conceptualising a Research and Writing a Proposal. How to evolve a budget for a Research?

  1. 1. Qualitative Research Methods in Social Science
  2. 2. What is research? <ul><li>Research refers to search for knowledge. </li></ul><ul><li>A careful investigation or inquiry specially through search for new facts in any branch of knowledge </li></ul>
  3. 3. Types of research <ul><li>Exploratory studies- to understand a phenomenon or to get insights into it. </li></ul><ul><li>Descriptive studies- description of characteristics of a particular individual, situation or group. </li></ul><ul><li>Explanation studies- determine the frequency with something occurs or its association with something . </li></ul>
  4. 4. Quantitative vs Qualitative <ul><li>Quantitative research measures quantity and amount, applicable to phenomenon that can be expressed in terms of quantity. </li></ul><ul><li>Qualitative research applicable to phenomenon relating to or involving quality or kind. It helps to understand and analyse various factors that motivate people to behave in a particular manner. </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Some questions: </li></ul><ul><li>What is the study about? </li></ul><ul><li>Why are you doing this study? </li></ul><ul><li>Where will it be carried out? </li></ul><ul><li>What type of data will be required? </li></ul><ul><li>Where will the data be found? </li></ul><ul><li>What will be the sample design? </li></ul><ul><li>What techniques of data collection will be used? </li></ul><ul><li>How will the data be analyzed? </li></ul><ul><li>In what style will the report be written? </li></ul>
  6. 6. What is qualitative research? <ul><li>In-depth interviews </li></ul><ul><li>Case study </li></ul><ul><li>Observation </li></ul><ul><li>Focus group discussions </li></ul><ul><li>Story telling </li></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>Research Process- formulation of research questions, review of literature, research design, identifying ethical issues, data collection, data analysis, report writing, dissemination </li></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><li>An approach which seeks to describe and analyze the culture and behaviour of humans fro the point of those being studied </li></ul><ul><li>Reveals categories, concepts or understanding that are internal to the group or the domain being studies. ‘respondents’ construct for the researcher their own understanding of the issues at hand. </li></ul>What is qualitative research
  9. 9. Characteristics of qualitative research <ul><li>Asks, why, how and under what circumstance things occur. </li></ul><ul><li>Seeks depth of understanding </li></ul><ul><li>Explores and discovers </li></ul><ul><li>Provides insight into the meanings of decisions and actions. </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>Uses interpretive and open ended methods </li></ul><ul><li>Is iterative rather than fixed </li></ul><ul><li>Is emergent rather then pre structured </li></ul><ul><li>Involves respondents as active participants rather than subjects </li></ul><ul><li>Defines the investigator as an instrument in the research process </li></ul>
  11. 11. Advantages of using these methods <ul><li>Cost usually more economical than Quantitative research </li></ul><ul><li>Flexibility </li></ul><ul><li>Technical facilities unnecessary </li></ul>
  12. 12. But the limitations <ul><li>Generalisability </li></ul><ul><li>Bias: we emphasize what we are looking for and ignore the rest </li></ul><ul><li>Reliability </li></ul>
  13. 13. This can be reduced by <ul><li>Using representative sampling strategies </li></ul><ul><li>Starting with specific research questions </li></ul><ul><li>Standardizing by using a series of questions/probes </li></ul><ul><li>Using multiple and independent assessments during analysis (eg triangulation) </li></ul><ul><li>Ensuring researchers are trained and skilled. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Basic skills <ul><li>The art of asking why </li></ul><ul><li>Ask in a neutral manner </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid leading questions/do not put words in the respondents mouth </li></ul><ul><li>Short and simple- ask one question at a time </li></ul><ul><li>Note verbal and non verbal cues. </li></ul>
  15. 15. <ul><li>The art of listening </li></ul><ul><li>Feedback is important </li></ul><ul><li>Beware of language </li></ul><ul><li>Body language displays interest (or lack of it) </li></ul><ul><li>Summarise and para phrase to confirm </li></ul><ul><li>Be careful of own interpretation </li></ul>
  16. 16. Other essential things <ul><li>Rapport building </li></ul><ul><li>Body language </li></ul><ul><li>Respect respondent’s time </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t make promises you cannot keep </li></ul><ul><li>Assure confidentiality </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid value judgments </li></ul><ul><li>Be sensitive about contextual influences </li></ul><ul><li>Allow the respondent to ask questions </li></ul><ul><li>Consent. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Sampling <ul><li>Often purposive or convenience </li></ul><ul><li>Numbers are of less importance </li></ul><ul><li>Flexible and can evolve as the study progresses </li></ul>
  18. 18. Data collection methods <ul><li>In depth interviews </li></ul><ul><li>Focus group discussion </li></ul><ul><li>Participant observation </li></ul><ul><li>Structured qualitative methods </li></ul>
  19. 19. In depth interviews <ul><li>Individual interviews </li></ul><ul><li>Conversational style rather than question-answer format </li></ul><ul><li>Semi structures or unstructured </li></ul><ul><li>Skilled and trained interviewers. </li></ul>
  20. 20. When to use: <ul><li>To get a historical perspective of an issue </li></ul><ul><li>Highlight individual concerns/needs that are difficult to elicit in a group </li></ul><ul><li>To obtain outlier attitudes </li></ul><ul><li>Interviewing key people in community </li></ul><ul><li>To develop research tools </li></ul>
  21. 21. Tips for interviewing <ul><li>Checklist/interview guide </li></ul><ul><li>Sensitive and respectful </li></ul><ul><li>Open ended questions </li></ul><ul><li>Probe from all angles </li></ul><ul><li>Cross check/clarify </li></ul><ul><li>Good recording/good observation </li></ul>
  22. 22. Guidelines and suggestions <ul><li>Listen more, talk less </li></ul><ul><li>Follow up on what the participant says </li></ul><ul><li>Ask questions when you don’t understand </li></ul><ul><li>Ask to hear more about a subject </li></ul><ul><li>Explore rather than probe </li></ul><ul><li>Listen more, talk less and ask real questions </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid leading questions </li></ul><ul><li>Ask open ended questions </li></ul>
  23. 23. <ul><li>Follow up, don’t interrupt </li></ul><ul><li>Ask participants to talk to you as if you were someone else. </li></ul><ul><li>Ask participants to tell a story </li></ul><ul><li>Keep participants focused and ask for details </li></ul><ul><li>Share experiences on occasion </li></ul><ul><li>Ask participants to reconstruct, not to remember </li></ul><ul><li>Tolerate silence. </li></ul>
  24. 24. Focus group discussions <ul><li>Guided discussion with groups of 6-10 individuals who share something in common </li></ul><ul><li>Popular because they are cheaper and quicker in terms of number of respondents </li></ul><ul><li>Require skill moderation to ensure genuine discussions and avoid imposing personal opinions </li></ul><ul><li>Cannot be used for individual behaviour </li></ul><ul><li>Bias of social desirability and dominating participants views. </li></ul>
  25. 25. <ul><li>Prepare a discussion guide </li></ul><ul><li>Over invite people to get the right number </li></ul><ul><li>Try to prepare a quite place for discussion </li></ul><ul><li>Audio or video record as well as have a note taker </li></ul><ul><li>Just on FGD with each population is usually not enough </li></ul><ul><li>Take consent and ensure confidentiality. </li></ul>
  26. 26. When to use them: <ul><li>When you want to know how groups of people think ore feel about a particular topic </li></ul><ul><li>Have a greater insight into why certain opinions are held, know how to improve the planning and design of new programmes </li></ul><ul><li>Provide a means of evaluating existing programmes. </li></ul><ul><li>Provide insights for developing strategies for an intervention/research </li></ul>
  27. 27. What focus groups can tell you: <ul><li>Information on how groups of people think or feel about a particular topic. </li></ul><ul><li>Give greater insight into why certain opinions are held </li></ul><ul><li>Help improve the planning and design of new programmes </li></ul><ul><li>Provide a means of evaluating existing programmes </li></ul><ul><li>Produce insights for developing strategies for outreach. </li></ul>
  28. 28. What focus groups cannot tell you: <ul><li>Valid information about individuals </li></ul><ul><li>Valid ‘before and after” information (how things have changed over time) </li></ul><ul><li>Information that you can apply generally to other groups of people. </li></ul>
  29. 29. Examples: <ul><li>FGD with young people on friendships/sexual relationships </li></ul><ul><li>Introductions-explain process, consent, confidentiality, self introductions </li></ul><ul><li>Meaning of friendships </li></ul><ul><li>What do young people do together with friends </li></ul><ul><li>Special friendships, dating </li></ul><ul><li>What they understand by sex (opinions) </li></ul><ul><li>Nature and patterns of sexual negotiation. </li></ul>
  30. 30. <ul><li>Prepare a discussion guide </li></ul><ul><li>Over invite people to get the right number </li></ul><ul><li>Try to prepare a quite place for discussion </li></ul><ul><li>Audio or video record as well as have a note taker </li></ul><ul><li>Just on FGD with each population is usually not enough </li></ul><ul><li>Take consent and ensure confidentiality. </li></ul>
  31. 31. What is not a focus group <ul><li>When a group discussion is not convened for the purpose of research </li></ul><ul><li>When it is not focused on a particular topic </li></ul><ul><li>There is no discussion involved, it only involved asking a series of questions to each participant sequentially. </li></ul>
  32. 32. Observational Methods <ul><li>Systematically watching people and or events in natural environment </li></ul><ul><li>Direct observation: structured observations of activities over a specified period of time </li></ul><ul><li>Participant observation: unstructured, observer becomes part of study community. </li></ul>
  33. 33. When can observational methods used: <ul><li>To gather information for development of new programmes/improve existing programmes for eg </li></ul><ul><li>How to attract people to a programme </li></ul><ul><li>To determine habits, needs of people </li></ul><ul><li>To determine acceptability of a programme </li></ul><ul><li>To check an existing set up in which you want to place a programme </li></ul>
  34. 34. Checklist of elements likely to be present in an Observation <ul><li>The Setting: What is the physical environment? What is the context? What kind of behaviour does the setting promote or prevent? </li></ul><ul><li>The participants: Describe who is in the scene, how many people ad their roles. What brings these people together? Who is allowed here? </li></ul><ul><li>3. Activities and interactions: What is going on? Is there a definable sequence of activities? How do the people interact with the activity and with one another? How are people and activities connected or interrelated? </li></ul>
  35. 35. <ul><li>4. Frequency and duration: When did the situation begin? How long doe sit last? Is it a recurring type of situation or it it unique? If it recurs, how frequently? How typical of such situations is the one begin observed? </li></ul><ul><li>5. Subtle factors: Informal and unplanned activities, connotative meaning of words, non verbal communication, what does not happen? </li></ul>
  36. 36. Structured methods <ul><li>Free listing: list items in response to a specific question </li></ul><ul><li>Ranking: rating: rank items listed on a specific scale, eg frequency, severity, preference </li></ul><ul><li>Social mapping: draw the community with attention to specific aspects eg social and health resources. </li></ul>
  37. 37. Ethics in Social Science Research <ul><li>Ethics is concerned with the conduct of human beings. </li></ul><ul><li>All scientific activities including those by the social scientists are conducted with the participation of human beings or have an impact on human beings or on the wider society an environment. Therefore they need to understand ethical issues and the implications of their scientific work and act accordingly. </li></ul>
  38. 38. Why guidelines? <ul><li>Steady growth of research in social sciences- range of topics that may invade the privacy and security of individuals, increasing number of individual and institutions and those sponsoring it. </li></ul><ul><li>Growth without social and ethical commitment could adversely affect the credibility of research, the autonomy of researchers, the quality of research and the rights of participants. </li></ul>
  39. 39. Four moral principles that consitute the basis of ethcis in research: <ul><li>Principle of non maleficense- Research must not cause harm to the participants in particular and to people in general </li></ul><ul><li>Principles of beneficense- Research should also make a positive contribution towards the welfare of people. </li></ul><ul><li>Principles of autonomy- Research must respect and protect the rights and dignity of participants </li></ul><ul><li>Principle of justice- the benefits and risks of researcv </li></ul>
  40. 40. General principles applicable: <ul><li>Essentiality </li></ul><ul><li>Maximisation of public interest and of social justice </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge, ability and commitment to do research </li></ul><ul><li>Respect and protection of autonomy, rights and dignity of participants </li></ul>
  41. 41. <ul><li>Privacy, anonymity and confidentiality </li></ul><ul><li>Precaution and risk minimisation </li></ul><ul><li>Non exploitation </li></ul><ul><li>Public Domain </li></ul><ul><li>Accountability and transparency </li></ul><ul><li>Totality of responsibility </li></ul>

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