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In addition to the original thread, the student must reply to at least 2 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be 250 words and include citations from at least 1 scholarly source. Each thread and reply must follow the current APA (current edition) format. Please include Bible perspectives.
Qualitative Data Collection
The collection of qualitative data is different from quantitative data. In a qualitative study, the researcher is usually the instrument and must carefully extract the data from the participants. In many cases, this is conducted through some type of interview. This essay examined the importance and usefulness of focus groups, and also compared and contrasted ethnographies and case studies as applied to data collection.
While interviewing individuals can be extremely effective, sometimes it is useful to interview a carefully selected set of people, called a focus group. According to Vito and Higgins (2015) focus group interviewing is a specialized method designed to gather complex date from participants, particularly information related to opinions, behaviors, attitudes, and beliefs. The authors noted that focus groups are a preferred method of marketing research firms. They also suggested that the technique is particularly useful in a needs evaluation for determining reactions of groups to changes in a program or the development of new programs.
Glesne (2016) noted that focus groups have been around for a long time and can be very versatile. For example, she pointed out that they were used during World War II to help develop effective training for military personnel and, more recently, they have proven useful in determining the effectiveness of public education campaigns regarding communicable diseases. While focus groups can save a considerable amount of time, Glesne discussed some limitations. Specifically, focus groups do not allow for strict confidentiality or anonymity.
Maxfield and Babbie (2018) suggested that focus group interviews can be more effective at eliciting dynamic and complex information. Similarly, Guest et al. (2017) found that focus groups were better at obtaining sensitive information from participants. It seems that in a group setting, once one person starts discussing a sensitive topic, others feel more inclined to do so. This is consistent with my work in officer resilience and peer support. In one-on-one peer support, it is often difficult to get someone to open up. In group crisis intervention settings, however, once one person shares a sensitive story, others are more likely to join in.
Ethnography and Case Studies
According to Glesne (2016), ethnographic studies involve studying the patterns and behaviors of a particular culture through observation and interviewing. She noted that ethnographic studies can often involve 30 to 50 interviews, though some of these may be repeat interviews of the same person or people. O’Leary (2005) added that ethnographic studies are designed to develop deep understanding and often continue until the researchers feel that they can no longer develop useful information. As a result, ethnographic studies are often time consuming.
While ethnographic studies are a deep dive into a particular culture, case studies are a deep dive into a particular case (Glesne, 2016). However, there is a wide range of conditions that can be considered a case. It can mean a particular condition or phenomenon from the perspective of one person or small group of people, to a program affecting a town or city. It can also include comprehensive research of a specific event (O’Leary, 2005). As with ethnographic studies, case studies provide detailed and comprehensive information. The main difference is in scope. Ethnographic studies focus on an entire culture, while case studies are limited to a particular issue or phenomenon defined as the case.
All of the techniques discussed in this essay involve interviewing. The primary skill needed for the interviewer is listening, which is a common topic in the English Standard Bible (2016) . For example, Proverbs 22:17 states “Incline your ear, and hear the words of the wise.” The wise interviewer would do well to heed the advice of the Bible, which teaches us to focus more on listening than speaking (James 1:19).
Qualitative research often involves developing deep meaning through the lived experiences of others. There are numerous techniques for developing this, such as focus groups, ethnographic research and case studies. Each one has strengths and limitations that make it more applicable in some circumstances than others. The one thing they have in common is obtaining information from others. As such, listening appears to be a critical skill for qualitative researchers.
Focus groups are one study method that has endured the test of time despite the availability of a plethora of other qualitative research options accessible to market researchers today (Barbour, 2018). Focus groups typically comprise eight to ten individuals and consist of a group conversation that a moderator guides. The group members will most likely be selected based on typical demographics, situations, and purchasing patterns (Wilkinson, 1999). When it comes to the delivery of qualitative research, focus groups are often regarded as one of the most potent instruments that researchers have at their disposal. However, just like any other instrument, there are pros and cons to using focus groups, and this one is no exception. The following are some of the advantages of focus groups:
It offers a Glimpse into Consumers' Thoughts
It enables a person to acquire significant insight into the thoughts and opinions of the group about a variety of issues, goods, and services by conducting in-person focus groups with the customers. A researcher may get insight into its customers' thoughts by hosting a well-planned group conversation that is conducted by an experienced moderator who strives to make the situation seem as natural as possible (Barbour, 2018). In the context of a group discussion, various thoughts and points of view will surface, which, when taken together, will provide a comprehensive picture of a business contemplating introducing a new website or product.
Discussions in Smaller Groups Can Produce Fruitful Results
The focus group dynamics can potentially have a significant and beneficial impact on the caliber of the findings produced by the study. A skilled moderator will be able to guide a conversation in a focus group in such a way as to encourage passionate debate among the other members (Wilkinson, 1999). In some circumstances, the participants' minds may be opened to new ideas due to these debates, which may lead to an even more in-depth discourse. This style of dynamic debate also makes it easy for group members to voice their views, regardless of whether they agree or disagree with the topic being discussed.
Offers In-action Experience
Focus groups provide businesses the option to listen in on conversations taking place inside a smaller group while remaining hidden from view. This provides several benefits, not the least of which is that people can understand and observe the study for themselves, and the information will not be distorted or distorted in any report produced (Barbour, 2018). Importantly, it also indicates that the organization may give explanation or feedback throughout the conversation by way of the moderator, which may have a good influence on the information that is produced as a consequence of the conversation.
Case Studies and Ethnographies
Case studies and ethnographies are two common types of in-depth qualitative research used in social science (Madden, 2017). There are some parallels between these two approaches, such as the fact that they take a holistic approach and need a considerable amount of time to complete, but there are also significant distinctions between them (Madden, 2017). The primary distinction between ethnography and case studies is that the former seeks to investigate cultural phenomena. In contrast, the latter seeks to characterize the nature of phenomena via in-depth research of particular examples.
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