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

Volume 17 Number 1 January 2012
    Ronald J. Chenail, Ph.D., Sally St. George, Ph.D., Dan Wulff, Ph.D., Maureen Duffy, Ph.D.,
Laurie L. Charles, Ph.D., Karen Wilson Scott, Ph.D., and Robin Cooper, Ph.D., Editors
Laura Patron, Managing Editor | Adam Rosenthal, TQR Community Coordinator

ISSN 1052-0147

Table of Contents


Qualitative Inquiry into Church-Based Assets for HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control: A Forum Focus Group Discussion Approach (pp. 1-15)
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Godwin N. Aja, Naomi N. Modeste, and Susanne B. Montgomery

Abstract: Assets church members believed they needed to engage in effective HIV/AIDS prevention and control activities. We used the three-step forum focus group discussion (FFGD) methodology to elicit responses from 32 church leaders and lay members, representing five denominations in Aba, Nigeria. Concrete resources, health expertise, finances, institutional support, capacity building, and spiritual support connected to the collective interest of members were indicated as useful for church members to engage in HIV/AIDS prevention and control activities. Adequate planning and delivery of cost-effective, appropriate and sustainable health promotion programs require an understanding of perceived church-based assets. Key Words: Community-Based Programs, Closing Forum, Health Education, Health Promotion, HIV/AIDS, Prevention, Focus Groups, Forum Focus Group Discussion, Open Forum, Nigeria, Qualitative Methods.

An Exemplar for Teaching and Learning Qualitative Research (pp. 16-77)
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Anthony J. Onwuegbuzie, Nancy L. Leech, John R. Slate, Marcella Stark, Bipin Sharma, Rebecca Frels, Kristin Harris, and Julie P. Combs

Abstract: In this article, we outline a course wherein the instructors teach students how to conduct rigorous qualitative research. We discuss the four major distinct, but overlapping, phases of the course: conceptual/theoretical, technical, applied, and emergent scholar. Students write several qualitative reports, called qualitative notebooks, which involve data that they collect (via three different types of interviews), analyze (using nine qualitative analysis techniques via qualitative software), and interpret. Each notebook is edited by the instructors to help them improve the quality of subsequent notebook reports. Finally, we advocate asking students who have previously taken this course to team-teach future courses. We hope that our exemplar for teaching and learning qualitative research will be useful for teachers and students alike. Key Words:Teaching Qualitative Research, Qualitative Research Pedagogy, Qualitative Notebooks.

Residential Grief Camps: An Initial Phenomenological Study of Staff Perspectives (pp.78-91)
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Tiffany B. Brown and Thomas G. Kimball

Abstract: Research has focused primarily on the impact of death on family functioning and the stages and tasks of grief, though little attention has been given to grief camps or the experiences of those who work there. This study explored the experiences of staff at a four-day overnight children's grief camp. Eight participants reported their experience of camp in two major categories: connection to others and independence in grief and five themes. Camp provides the opportunity for campers to connect to others while finding their own path to healing. Clinical implications and future research directions are also discussed. Key Words: Grief Camps, Camp Staff, Children's Grief, Phenomenology, Qualitative Research.

Conversing Life: An Autoethnographic Construction (pp. 92-119)
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Christopher N. Hoelson and Rod Burton

Abstract: This autoethnography is a constructed account of a co-exploration into the nature and effects of a longitudinal dyadic conversation process from a relational constructionist perspective. The conversations, between me as participant autoethnographer and a co-participant, aimed at maximising personal learning for both. Through co-created contexts of mutual engagement and respectful presence, we were able to focus our learning on the spontaneous process and content of the conversations. The qualitative data were sampled purposively from diary entries summarizing the conversations which spanned a period of five years. The data were analysed into themes and together, with selected illustrative examples of significant conversational moments, were woven into an autoethnography that attempts to convey the embodied and systemic learning that emerged from these conversations. Key Words:Autoethnography, Dyadic Conversation, Communication, Sparkling Moments, Constructionist, Personal Development, Therapeutic Change.

Building Interdisciplinary Qualitative Research Networks: Reflections on Qualitative Research Group (QRG) at the University of Manitoba (pp. 120-130)
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Kerstin Stieber Roger and Gayle Halas

Abstract: As qualitative research methodologies continue to evolve and develop, both students and experienced researchers are showing greater interest in learning about and developing new approaches. To meet this need, faculty at the University of Manitoba created the Qualitative Research Group (QRG), a community of practice that utilizes experiential learning in the context of social relationships to nurture social interaction, create opportunities to share knowledge, support knowledge creation, and build collaborations among all disciplines. While many other qualitative research networks such as the QRG may exist, little has been published on their early development or the activities that contribute to the growth and sustainability of active collaboration. To address this gap, the authors of the paper will share the steps taken in developing the QRG, including a needs assessment identifying members' strengths and support needs, regular communication through a listserv, to the successful workshop based on the community of practice concept. Lessons learned during the initial development of the QRG are shared with the intent of contributing ideas for developing and supporting qualitative research in other institutions and prompting further consideration of ways to support and enrich every generation of qualitative researchers. Key Words: Community of Practice, Qualitative Research, Reflection, Development, Network, Collaboration, Support.

Using Realist Synthesis to Develop an Evidence Base from an Identified Data Set on Enablers and Barriers for Alcohol and Drug Program Implementation (pp. 131-142)
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Barbara Hunter, Sarah MacLean, and Lynda Berends

Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to show how "realist synthesis" methodology (Pawson, 2002) was adapted to review a large sample of community based projects addressing alcohol and drug use problems. Our study drew on a highly varied sample of 127 projects receiving funding from a national non-government organisation in Australia between 2002 and 2008. Open and pattern coding led to the identification of 10 barrier and nine enabler mechanisms influencing project implementation across the sample. Eight case studies (four demonstrating successful implementation; four demonstrating less than successful implementation) were used for depth exploration of these mechanisms. High level theories were developed, from these findings, on implementation effectiveness in projects addressing alcohol and other drug use problems. Key Words: Realist Synthesis, Evidence Base for Decision Making, Enablers and Barriers, Drug and Alcohol Programs.

A Qualitative Inquiry in the Evaluation of a Pedagogical Course from the Prospective Teachers' Points of View (pp. 143-174)
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Banu Yucel Toy and Ahmet Ok

Abstract: Qualitative inquiry has gained importance in the evaluation of educational settings because it provides in-depth information, shedding light on context, situations, or processes. In this study, a qualitative inquiry was undertaken in order to evaluate a pedagogical course from the prospective teachers' points of view. In this case study, data were collected through focus group interviews with three groups of prospective teachers. The lack of putting theories into practice, the lack of relating the topics to teaching life, the lack of attention and participation, and the lack of a variety of materials appeared to be the most essential problems. In this study, the expressed problems and suggestions were discussed in terms of their implications for the improvement of the course. Key Words: Evaluation, Course Evaluation, Qualitative Inquiry, Teacher Education, Case Study.

Grandparental Death: Through the Lens of an Asian Child (pp. 175-190)
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Wing-Fu Lai

Abstract: Bereavement has been extensively studied over the years, yet scholarly work depicting, with the first-person perspective, the experience of childhood bereavement is severely lacking. The research question I set out to answer here is: What is it like as an Asian child to experience bereavement following grandparental death? As such, self-introspection was exercised, and this, together with the diaries and free writings generated at the time of my grandma's death, was used as the basis for autoethnographic reflections. It is hoped that my story presented here can offer a psychological portrayal of an Asian child enduring grandparental death, and illuminate the grandmother-grandson relationship in a Chinese society. Key Words: Autoethnography, Bereavement, Grandparenthood, Narrative, Qualitative Research.

Group Supervision Attitudes: Supervisory Practices Fostering Resistance to Adoption of Evidence-Based Practices (pp. 191-199)
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Charles T. Brooks, David A. Patterson, and Patrick M. McKiernan

Abstract: The focus of this study was to qualitatively evaluate worker's attitudes about clinical supervision. It is believed that poor attitudes toward clinical supervision can create barriers during supervision sessions. Fifty-one participants within a social services organization completed an open-ended questionnaire regarding their clinical supervision experiences. Results suggest four key areas which appear to be strong factors in workers' experiences and attitudes regarding group supervision: a. facilitator's skill level; b. creativity; c. utilization of technology; and d. applicability. For organizations interested in overcoming potential barriers to adopting best practices, effectively addressing workers' negative attitudes toward group supervision would be a worthy endeavor. Key Words: Group Supervision, Evidence-based Practices, Worker Attitudes, EBP adoption, Phenomenology.

Administrator Insights and Reflections: Technology Integration in Schools (pp. 200-221)
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Bryan Berrett, Jennifer Murphy, and Jamie Sullivan

Abstract:There are numerous technology tools that educators utilize to support student learning. Often, technology is mandated from the top down with school administrators' responsible for overseeing the implementation. Innovative technological approaches to learning often meet resistance within schools. The pervasive culture in education is counteractive to technology integration, which may be useful to pedagogy and in the long run may help students deal with the ever growing level of technology present in today's society. Characteristics are identified at two out of four schools as a way of assessing the progress of technology integration and locating individuals who will help move the process forward. This knowledge, combined with competent leadership, makes the difference between success and failure of an innovation implementation. Key Words: Technology Integration, Leadership, Administrators, Schools, Case Study.

A Case Study of the Identity Development of an Adolescent Male with Emotional Disturbance and 48 XYYY Karyotype in an Institutional Setting (pp. 222-243)
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John L. Rausch

Abstract: The goal of this study was to utilize a phenomenological case study design to investigate the individual and social identity development of an adolescent male who had been placed in a high-security group home setting. The participant had been identified with emotional disturbance (ED), and 48, XYYY karyotype. The participant described his social and emotional development as being impacted by his environment, his level of personal control, and his view of the future. Key Words: Identity Development, Social and Emotional Development, 48, XYYY Karyotype, Phenomenology, Institutionalization.

How-To Essays

Conducting Qualitative Data Analysis: Reading Line-by-Line, but Analyzing by Meaningful Qualitative Units (pp. 244-247)
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Ronald J. Chenail

Abstract: In the first of a series of "how-to" essays on conducting qualitative data analysis, Ron Chenail points out the challenges of determining units to analyze qualitatively when dealing with text. He acknowledges that although we may read a document word-by-word or line-by-line, we need to adjust our focus when processing the text for purposes of conducting qualitative data analysis so we concentrate on meaningful, undivided entities or wholes as our units of analysis. Key Words:Qualitative Data Analysis, Unit of Analysis, and Qualitative Research.

Conducting Qualitative Data Analysis: Qualitative Data Analysis as a Metaphoric Process (pp. 248-253)
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Ronald J. Chenail

Abstract: In the second of a series of "how-to" essays on conducting qualitative data analysis, Ron Chenail argues the process can best be understood as a metaphoric process. From this orientation he suggests researchers follow Kenneth Burke's notion of metaphor and see qualitative data analysis as the analyst systematically considering the "this-ness" of the data from the "that-ness" of the qualitative abstraction drawn about the data. To make this metaphoric pronouncement a convincing case to judges as to the veracity of the juxtaposition of the code to that which is coded, the analyst must employ a recursive process by showing the presence of the qualities of the unit of analysis in the product of the qualitative analysis as evidence of the quality of the analysis itself. This evidentially recursive act must be made overtly because in qualitative data analysis, the data do not speak for themselves. Key Words: Qualitative Data Analysis, Metaphor, Evidence, Unit of Analysis, Recursion, and Qualitative Research.

Mixed-Methods Research Methodologies (pp. 254-280)
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Steven R. Terrell

Abstract: Mixed-Method studies have emerged from the paradigm wars between qualitative and quantitative research approaches to become a widely used mode of inquiry. Depending on choices made across four dimensions, mixed-methods can provide an investigator with many design choices which involve a range of sequential and concurrent strategies. Defining features of these designs are reported along with quality control methods, and ethical concerns. Useful resources and exemplary study references are shared. Key Words: Mixed-Methods Studies, Quantitative Research, Qualitative Research, Concurrent Strategies, and Sequential Strategies.

Book Reviews

Practical Wisdom: A Review of Foundations of Ethical Practice, Research, and Teaching in Psychology and Counseling (pp. 281-283)
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Fatima A.Cotton

Abstract: In Karen Strohm Kitchener and Sharon K. Anderson's Foundations of Ethical Practice, Research, and Teaching in Psychology and Counseling (2011) they use the term practical wisdom or prudence as a way to make right decisions in real life situation. The authors lay the foundation for conceptually dealing with ethical problems for psychologists, counselors, students, and trainees. The book is in two parts. In the first six chapters, the authors focus on the foundations of ethical reasoning. The next part focuses on the ethical issues psychologists and counselors are confronted with in their roles. Key Words: Ethics, Psychology, Principles, Integrity, Qualitative Research

Manufacturing Change (pp. 284-287)
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Una Ruddock

Abstract: This is a highly accessible presentation of organisational research, which demonstrates how ethnography can elicit a holistic understanding of a cross section of employees and thereby reveal a workplace culture. It suggests that change efforts fail if culture is ignored and offers a detailed account of how critical incidents translate into tools for change. The data analysis reveals the weakness in working relationships and how blame functions to prevent change. The Ideal Plant project emerges, which validates transformation tools to create cooperative workplace interactions and collaborative problem solving. The past and future, metaphorically represented as two different places, are connected by a bridge. The old way is bad, the new way is good and the present is a mixture of both. Key Words: Ethnography, Collaboration, Ideal Plant Metrics.

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