ERIC Number: ED329157
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991
Reference Count: N/A
Phenomenological Interviewing in the Conduct of Institutional Research: An Argument and an Illustration. No. 38.
Attinasi, Louis C., Jr.
AIR Professional File, n38 Fall-Win 1990-91
This article describes a qualitative research approach (in-depth phenomenological interviewing) and illustrates, through the example of an actual study, its potential for helping institutions of higher education understand their students. It argues that progress in understanding college student outcomes, such as persistence, has been retarded by the failure to take into consideration the meanings the phenomenon of going to college holds for students. The limitations of quantitative approaches to institutional research are addressed first, as well as the need to examine the process of interpreting the data, i.e., approaching the study through the eyes of the students, not the researcher. Next, a general overview of the approach is described including the purpose behind phenomenological interviewing and its methodology. Finally, an illustration is provided of the phenomenological interview approach in action that involved a study of Mexican-American university students' perceptions of going to college. Included in the study's description are the data collection and analysis procedures, the research perspective used, the interpretation of the data's meanings, and the researcher's theoretical interpretations. A summary and conclusion are presented. Contains 41 references. (GLR)
Descriptors: Academic Persistence, Case Studies, College Students, Data Interpretation, Evaluation Methods, Higher Education, Institutional Research, Interviews, Qualitative Research, Research Methodology, Statistical Analysis, Student Attitudes, Student Behavior
The Association for Institutional Research, 314 Stone Building, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL 32306-3038.
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Association for Institutional Research.