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ERIC Number: ED423285
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998
Pages: 16
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Qualitative Research: An Introduction. Purposes, Methodology, Criteria for Judgment, and a Rationale for Mixed Methodology.
Wilson, Vicki A.
Qualitative research is research that attempts not only to understand the world, but also to understand it through the eyes of the participants whose world it is. Consequently, qualitative research must occur in a natural setting. The study begins, not with hypotheses to be proved or disproved, but with a flexible plan to explore a phenomenon. Only when all the data are collected is inductive reasoning used to draw conclusions. There are many challenges in qualitative research, from designing the study to analyzing the data. Among the qualitative research in education traditions are: (1) human ethnology; (2) ecological psychology; (3) holistic ethnography; (4) cognitive anthropology; (5) ethnography of communication; and (6) symbolic interactionism. Some politically charged qualitative methodologies are: democratic evaluation, neo-Marxist ethnography, feminist research, action research, and participatory research. Like other scholarship, qualitative research must adhere to accepted standards. Although the standards for quantitative research (objectivity, reliability, and lack of bias) are problematic for qualitative research, rationality, rigor, and fairness can still be sought. Researchers are beginning to understand that quantitative and qualitative research can be complementary. Social science research is leaning toward acceptance of a mixed methodology that uses quantitative and qualitative techniques. (Contains 14 references.) (SLD)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A