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Chapter 18: The Nature of Qualitative Research

Activity 18.1: Qualitative Research Questions Activity 18.2: Qualitative vs. Quantitative Research Activity 18.3: Approaches to Qualitative Research

Activity 18.1: Qualitative Research Questions Which of the following questions would lend themselves well to qualitative research? 1. Do students learn more in a language laboratory than they do in a teacher-directed classroom? 2. What sorts of conditioning drills do physical education teachers use? 3. How do elementary teachers teach children to read? 4. Is client-centered therapy more effective than traditional therapy with teenagers? 5. What kinds of things do history teachers do as they go about their daily routine? 6. How many district administrators took a sabbatical leave this past year? 7. Is the fingerprinting of student teachers legal? 8. How did teachers teach science during the 1920s? 9. What methods do the volunteer tutors use in the after-school tutoring program?

Activity 18.2: Qualitative vs. Quantitative Research In the space provided after each of the characteristics listed below, write Qualitative if the characteristic refers primarily to one or more qualitative research methodologies. Write Quantitative if the characteristic refers primarily to one or more quantitative research methodologies. 1. A preference for hypotheses that emerge as the study progresses _______________ 2. A preference for precise definitions stated at the outset of the study ______________ 3. A preference for statistical summary of results _______________ 4. Data is analyzed inductively _______________ 5. A preference for random techniques for obtaining meaningful samples ____________ 6. A lot of attention devoted to assessing and improving the reliability of scores obtained from instruments _______________ 7. A willingness to manipulate conditions when studying complex phenomena _______________ 8. The researcher is the key instrument _______________ 9. Primary reliance is on the researcher to deal with procedural bias _______________ 10. The natural setting is the direct source of data _______________ 11. Data are collected primarily in the form of numbers _______________

Activity 18.3: Approaches to Qualitative Research Match the approach to qualitative research listed in Column B with its description in Column A. Column A: Description 1. ______ Researchers generally assume that there is some commonality to the perceptions human beings have in how they interpret an experience 2. ______ Description of the cultural behavior of a group or individual 3. ______ Researchers start with an area of study and then allow what is relevant to that area to emerge 4. ______ Interest is in the experiences of a single individual 5. ______ Researcher is interested in studying a particular case only as a means to some larger goal he or she has in mind 6. ______ Researcher studies an individuals reactions to a particular experience or set of experiences 7. ______ Researchers doing this type of study use what is known as the constant comparative method 8. ______ Often involves a study of just one classroom or program Column B: Approach to Qualitative Research a. Biography b. Phenomenology c. Grounded theory d. Case study e. Ethnography