Netherlands, Utrecht

Qualitative Research Catalogue: An Overview of Three Methods

when 6 July 2020 - 10 July 2020
language English
duration 1 week
credits 1 EC
fee EUR 700

This course gives a bird’s eye view of the fundamentals of three qualitative research methods – Case study research, Grounded theory, and Ethnography. The purpose of this course is therefore to answer the question – How can the researcher go from the initial research questions to the findings to the final report using Case study research / Grounded theory / Ethnography? As a final step, different rigor / trustworthiness, ethics, and overall quality concerns affecting each method will also be discussed.

Case study research is a method which is often positivistic. It involves exploring a phenomenon by investigating one or more cases within a bounded setting or context. Grounded theory, on the other hand, involves grounding findings in data and hence is more interpretivistic in nature. Grounded theory about a process, action, or interaction is generated by exploring the views of the participants. Ethnography, yet another interpretivistic method, is dedicated to exploring and understanding how people perceive the world from their particular position in a society, organization or setting. One of the main goals of Ethnography is to clarify why people act in a particular manner within a specific socio-cultural context.

In this course students will discuss the whole research process involved in these three methods, in a nutshell. Bearing in mind the flexibility of qualitative research and that various formulations and types of qualitative research have different stages, steps and decision points, we use an ideal-type four-stage depiction of the qualitative research process which consists of stages corresponding to data selection, data collection, data analysis, and the presentation of results. As a final step, different rigor / trustworthiness, ethics, and overall quality concerns affecting each method will also be discussed.

The course is formulated in a way that allows the students to learn by practicing. Therefore the students will be presented with various practical exercises which will give them a hands-on experience on how to do qualitative research.

Participants are requested to bring their own laptop.

Please note that there are no graded activities included in this course. Therefore, we are not able to provide students with a transcript of grades. You will obtain a certificate upon completion of this course.

Course leader

Dr. Lakshmi Balachandran Nair

Target group

This course introduces students to three specific qualitative research methods. A preliminary understanding of general qualitative research is preferable (although not mandatory). Please note that the selection for this course will be done on a first-come-first-served basis.

Course aim

The course aims to provide students with the fundamentals of three qualitative research methods. By the end of the course the students will be familiar with the following aspects of Case study research, Grounded theory and Ethnography (in a nutshell):

- Data selection
- Data collection
- Data analysis
- Presentation of results
- Rigor/ trustworthiness
- Ethics
- Quality

Fee info

EUR 700: Course + course materials
EUR 200: Housing fee (optional)

Register for this course
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