NSU Home  The Qualitative Report
An online journal dedicated to qualitative research since 1990

Volume 10 Number 4 December 2005
http://www.nova.edu/ssss/QR/QR10-3/index.html
 
    Ronald J. Chenail, Ph.D., Sally St. George, Ph.D., and Dan Wulff, Ph.D., Editors
ISSN 1052-0147

Table of Contents

The Social and Cultural Construction of Singlehood among Young, Single Mormons (pp. 639-661)
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Jana Darrington, Kathleen W. Piercy, and Sylvia Niehuis

Abstract: Religious young adults interpret their single experiences based on an intricate system of influences that include personal beliefs, family, religious teachings, and friendships. This qualitative study of 24 never-married, young Mormon men and women examined the social and cultural construction of singlehood based on: (1) definitions of singlehood, (2) influences on the construction of singlehood, and (3) feelings about being single. A major theme of this research emerged in the way participants defined singlehood: by what they lacked and by seeking to end their temporary single state through marriage. Families and religious teachings interacted to form the strongest influences on participants construction of singlehood, while supportive friends helped respondents feel that they were not alone. Key Words: Culture, Family, Mormon, Religion, and Singlehood

Developing Culturally Sensitive Skills in Health and Social Care with a Focus on Conducting Research with African Caribbean Communities in England (pp. 662-686)
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Gina Marie Awoko Higginbottom and Laura Serrant-Green

Abstract: Researchers may not feel equipped to conduct qualitative research with ethnic minority communities in England because they may lack of culturally sensitive research skills. The aim of this paper is to explore how researchers might integrate culturally sensitive research skills into their work. This paper draws on our own experiences of conducting research with African Caribbean communities in England, and from workshops we facilitated with researchers and community representatives. The purpose of the workshops was to establish the most pertinent issues in conducting research with ethnic minority communities in England. We gathered data from the participants and created themes based on the discussions: establishing the need for an inclusive approach to research, issues around recruitment, respecting cultural norms, and dealing with disclosure. Key Words: Research Methods, Researching Ethnicities, Cultural Awareness, and Qualitative Research

Reflecting on the Strategic Use of CAQDAS to Manage and Report on the Qualitative Research Process (pp. 687-702)
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Mark Wickham and Megan Woods

Abstract: As an increasing number of researchers have been trained to use programs such as Atlas/ti, NUD*IST, Nvivo, and ETHNOGRAPH their value in analyzing qualitative data has gained greater recognition. Drawing on the experience of two PhD candidates at the University of Tasmania, this paper reflects upon some potential uses of a suite of computer software programs to make the research and analysis process more logical and transparent. In addition, this paper argues for the introduction of a Computer Aided Qualitative Data Analysis Protocol to give readers of the research report a better understanding of the analysis process undertaken by the researcher. Key Words: Computer Aided Analysis, Qualitative Data Analysis, and Qualitative Analysis Reporting

African American Parents Perceptions of an American Deaf Community:Wheres the Poetic Justice? (pp. 703-717)
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Valerie Borum

Abstract: Poetic prose, a creative qualitative technique, is used to present the findings (emerging themes) of in-depth, thematic interviews with 14 African American parents with deaf children. This is presented in a multi-vocal, interactive, and interwoven style. This style of interweaving voices of participants in a creative poetic prose is indicative of African American cultural and oral traditions. It also permits and deepens the readers ability to emotionally and spiritually connect with experiences and emotions of African American parents and their perceptions of an American deaf community. This research was conducted using a modified grounded theory approach where theory (grand narrative) and communal-personal-based narratives interact. Afrocentricsm offers a powerful conceptual frame for organizing these experiences of parents of deaf children within the deaf community and schools for deaf children. Key Words: Deaf Children, Deaf Schools, Deaf Community, African American Families, Racism, Afrocentricity, Poetic Prose, and Multi-Vocal Text

Using the Delphi Technique to Search for Empirical Measures of Local Planning Agency Power (pp. 718-744)
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Amal K. Ali

Abstract: This paper shows how the Delphi technique was used to conceptualize and operationalize local planning agency power. In the first of two Delphi studies, twelve scholars suggested four dimensions of agency power: legal authority, degree of control, relative autonomy, and capacity. In the second Delphi study, sixteen professional planners operationalized power dimensions proposed by the first Delphi study. The dimensions were operationalized in the context of Floridas planning system. The proposed measures were tested empirically by reviewing Florida statutes, surveying municipal planning agencies, and conducting statistical analysis. This research presents important lessons learned for researchers interested in Delphi studies and proposes valid empirical measures of local planning agency power. Key Words: Delphi Technique, Power, and Local Planning Agencies

Menopause and Methodological Doubt (pp. 745-757)
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Sheila Spence

Abstract: Menopause and methodological doubt begins by making a tongue-in-cheek comparison between Descartes' methodological doubt and the self-doubt that can arise around menopause. A hermeneutic approach is taken in which Cartesian dualism and its implications for the way women are viewed in society are examined, both through the experiences of women undergoing menopause and through the commentary of several contributors in Feminist Interpretations of Réné Descartes by Susan Bordo (1999). This examination is located inside the story of the paper, which was written over the duration of a university hermeneutics course, and reflects the author's evolving understanding of hermeneutic interpretation within qualitative research. Key Words: Alethia, Cartesian, Descartes, Doubt, Emotion, Experience, Feminist, Gadamer, Hag, Hermeneutics, Hormones, and Menopause

Research Paradigms and Meaning Making: A Primer (pp. 758-770)
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Steven Eric Krauss

Abstract: An introduction and explanation of the epistemological differences of quantitative and qualitative research paradigms is first provided, followed by an overview of the realist philosophical paradigm, which attempts to accommodate the two. From this foundational discussion, the paper then introduces the concept of meaning making in research methods and looks at how meaning is generated from qualitative data analysis specifically. Finally, some examples from the literature of how meaning can be constructed and organized using a qualitative data analysis approach are provided. The paper aims to provide an introduction to research methodologies, coupled with a discussion on how meaning making actually occurs through qualitative data analysis. Key Words: Qualitative Research, Quantitative Research, Epistemology, Meaning Making, and Qualitative Data Analysis

An Ethnographic-Case Study of Beliefs, Context Factors, and Practices of Teachers Integrating Technology (pp. 771-794)
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Julie Angers and Krisanna Machtmes

Abstract: This ethnographic-case study explored the beliefs, context factors, and practices of three middle school exemplary teachers that led to a technology-enriched curriculum. Findings suggest that these middle school teachers believe technology is a tool that adds value to lessons and to students learning and motivation. Due to a personal interest in technology, these teachers are self-taught and apply for grants to acquire new hardware and software. They receive support for release time to continue with ongoing professional development, which has helped to change their teaching strategies from teacher-centered to student-centered. They are not afraid to take risk using trial and error, flexible planning, project-based lessons, varying roles, varying grouping, and providing multiple activities in their classroom practices. Key Words: Technology Integration, Ethnographic-Case Study, Exemplary Teachers, Beliefs, Context Factors, and Practices

Hay Sacks Anonymous: Living in the Shadow of the Unidentified. Psychological Aspects of Physical Inactivity from a Phenomenological Perspective (pp. 795-816)
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Anni Bergman and Torsten Norlander

Abstract: The present qualitative study emanates from a phenomenological perspective and has the purpose of creating an understanding for what a so-called hay sack is as well as understanding the experiences of a hay sack. In this context a hay sack refers to a person with low physical activity. Eight hay sacks between 36-58 years of age were interviewed about their experiences. Karlssons (1995) EPP-method was used. The analysis resulted in 13 categories. A hay sack wants to, but is unable to engage in regular physical activity as a consequence of something unidentified, possibly a psychological barrier. Being a hay sack involves thoughts and feelings which are expressed in a variety of ways such as excuses and anxiety about future health. Key Words: Physical Inactivity, Hay Sack, Keep-fit Measures, Exercise, and Motivation

Do Research Thesis Examiners Need Training?: Practitioner Stories (pp. 717-835)
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Shankar Sankaran, Pam Swepson, and Geof Hill

Abstract: We are thesis examiners within the Australian academic system who formed a community of practice to try to resolve some of the issues we were facing. Stories of examiners reflecting on and examining their own practice are a notable silence in the higher degree research literature. In this study we have adopted a storytelling inquiry method that involved telling our practitioner stories, firstly to each other and then to a wider audience through this paper. We then identified issues that we believe are relevant to other thesis examiners. We have also found that engaging in a community of practice is itself a valuable form of examiner professional development. Key Words: Thesis Examiner Training, Storytelling, and Practitioner Research

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