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GGR271H FINAL EXAM PART-A Prep Notes-Lecture#8-Lecture#11 Textbook Notes.docx

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University of Toronto St. George
Damian Dupuy

Lecture#8­ Case Studies  Reading: Bryman, Teevan and Bell, 2012 – pp. 38-40; What is a case Study? The selection, analysis and writing of an example that either contradicts or supports a wider paradigm, theory, or popularly held belief. - The basic case study design involves a detailed and intensive analysis of a single case. Favorite methods used by case study researchers include: 1. Participant observation 2. Unstructured interviewing These two methods are particularly helpful in generating an intensive, detailed examination of a case. - In case study, researchers aim to provide in-depth information. - Case studies are often idographic in nature, seeking to provide a rich description of the subject matter. Qualitative Case Study Inductive approach (specific Relationship between theory observations to broader and research generalizations & theories=bottom up approach) Generation of new theory from testing of data Quantitative Case Study Deductive approach (Aimed Guided by specific research to test theory, begins with a questions derived from social hypothesis) theories Issues related to Case Study - External validity and generalizability of case study research is an issue, because how can a one single case possibly be a representative of other cases? (For example, can the case study of Toronto police department be generalizable to all large urban police departments in Canada?) Types of Case Study 3 types of case by Yin (1984) which relates to the issue of external validity 1. The critical case - researcher has a clearly specified hypothesis and use a case study example to test that hypothesis. 2. Extreme/unique case - Case study is used to highlight differences from the norm (표표표,표표표) 3. Revelatory Case - Observe something or situation which are not normally accessible to the public. - This can happen when previously unavailable data becomes accessible. - As noted, sometimes case studies are primarily inductive, used as information to generate theories. Other times, they may be deductive in nature, providing the data required to assess theories. - Problem arise when the research involves comparison of 2 or more cases because it is hard to focus on one specific case where attention is not paid to the specific details of a particular case and more to the ways in which multiple cases can be contrasted. - The strength of comparative designs is that they highlight the similarities and differences between cases, which can be used to assess or generate theories. 5 Misunderstandings About Case Study 1. Not theoretical 2. Can't generalize 3. Not useful for testing hypotheses 4. Contain bias 5. Difficult to summarize Focus Group - Discussion among small group of people - Usually only ONCE, 1-2 hours - Interaction among group members: Comments trigger chain of responses & explore different views, reconsider Advantages Disadvantages More naturalistic than one-to-one interview Less naturalistic than observation Easier to record certain types of data Loses depth of perspective from individual participants When do we use focus group? - When findings can't be generalized - When generating questions for survey - Follow up survey results - Sole method of data collection - Confidentiality is difficult (in case of sensitive material, in-depth personal interviews are better) Lecture #10: Ethnographic/Observational methods Reading: Bryman, Teevan and Bell, 2012 – Chapter 9 Ethnography and participant observation - Researcher is involved in the activities of people under study. - Regular observations of members' behaviours by researcher - Listens and engages in the conversation - Interviews are held to supplement observations - Develops an understanding of group cultures and people's behaviour within their culture - Writes up a detailed account of the setting Micro-ethnography - focuses on one aspect of an issue in order to save time (ideal for students) Participant observation and ethnography is synonymous, although here, ethnography will be used in a broader sense, including participant observation: the latter will refer specifically to the observational component of ethnographic research. Access - one of the most difficult steps in ethnography is gaining access to the social setting one wants to research. Overt versus Covert Ethnography OVERT COVERT Tell participants the purpose of research Sneak into a group without telling them that research is being held Follows ethical review policy for complete Easier access to closed setting (hard to get in publication setting) May limit access Less likely to have negative reaction B/C participants don't know that they are being studied May lead to violent/ uncomfortable reactions Participants' behaviour doesn't intentionally from participants change to suit the research Participants' true behaviour may be hidden Difficulty in taking notes Other methods can't be used Anxiety/stress about being exposed Ethical concerns: deception, privacy, informed consent Retrospective ethnography - Using observations that were gathered before the decision was made to conduct a study. Access to closed setting - Gaining access to most organizations requires strategic planning, hard work, and sometimes luck. - Use friends, contacts and colleagues to help gain access - if possible, get someone in the organization to vouch for you and the value of your research (Sponsors). - Offer something in return (like a final report). - Provide a clear explanation of your aims and methods. - Be prepare to negotiate Getting access to social settings is a crucial first step in ethnographic research. Key Informants (연연연연 연연 연연연) - Ethnographers rely heavily on informants - Unsolicited offers information are highly attractive to ethnographers because of their apparent spontaneity. - Solicited accounts can be obtained in 2 ways: by interviewing or by casual questioning during conversation. - Roles of ethnographers - Complete participant: a fully functioning member of a social setting but one whose true identity is unknown to members: in other words, a covert observer. In such cases, the ethnographer is engaged in regular interaction with people and participants in their daily lives but assumes the researcher's role in private to write down notes once the situation has unfolded. - Participant-as-observer: As above, except that members of the social setting are aware that the ethnographer is studying them. - Observer-as-participant: the researcher is mainly an interviewer and observer, and participates only marginally in the group's activities. (For example, research on the police is often similar, since the opportunities for genuine participation are limited by legal and safety restrictions.) - Complete observer: no interaction with the people observed. Most writers do not include this as a form of ethnography, since by definition there is little or no involvement or participation. There may be less risk of reactivity (subjects behaving unnaturally because they know they are being observed) because the researcher is at a distance; but there is also greatly reduced potential for understanding, because the researcher doesn't ask questions or try in any way to get into heads of the people under study. - The participant-as-observer role carries the risk of over-identification and hence of 'going native', but at the same time it offers an opportunity to get close to people. - The observer-as-participant role carries the risk of not understanding the social setting and its people sufficiently and therefore making incorrect inferences. Field Notes - Detailed summaries of events and behaviour, and the researcher's initial reflections on them. - Write down ASAP - Write down full field notes at the end of the day (details incl. location, people involved, date and etc). - Tape recorder for notes (But time consuming due to transcription) - Vivid, clear and complete note is needed. Types of field Notes - Mental Notes: Appropriate when writing down notes should be hidden - Jotted Notes: Such notes need to be written inconspicuously, preferably out of sight, since writing in front of research participants may be off-putting for them. - Full field notes: the main data source in ethnographic research. End of the day note. The rise of visual ethnography - Qualitative researchers have used visual materials in at least three ways: 1. as memory aids in the course of fieldwork, where they essentially become components of the ethnographer's field notes 2. as sources of data in their own right 3. as prompts for discussion by research participants Realist: the material simply captures an event or setting that then becomes 'fact' for the ethnographer to interpret along with other data. Reflexive: Can there be a feminist ethnography? - Reinharze (1992) considered feminist ethnography important to feminism because: it documents women's lives and activities, which were previously regarded as marginal and subsidiary to mens' - it understands women from their perspective, so that research that 'trivializes females' activities and thoughts, or interprets them from the standpoint of men in the society or of the male researcher' is rejected - it understands women in context What is 'going native'? - common term used in ethnography in a non-pejorative way. - situation where as a result of prolonged immersion in the lives of the people under study, coupled with a commitment to seeing through their eyes, ethnographers become so wrapped up in the world of their subjects that they forger their role as researchers. - Under this circumstances, researchers may find it difficult to maintain a social scientific perspective on the collection and analysis of data. The covert role in ethnography Advantages - easier access (because participants don't know that they are being studied, no special permission is needed) - less reactivity. (because participants don't know that they are being observed by a researcher, they tend to speak more naturally than they would otherwise) Disadvantages - Note taking is difficult in order not to reveal that they are being researched. - Other method are hard to be used. If the researcher is in a covert role, steering conversations in a certain direction can increase the risk of detection, and it is essentially impossible to conduct interviews. - Anxiety: stress posed on researchers about detection. - Ethical problems: deception of participants and failure to obtain informed consent. Violation of privacy. Open/Public Setting Closed Setting Overt Role Type1 Type2 Covert Role Type3 Type4 Involvement Detachment Complete participanParticipant-as obseObserver-as-asparticipComplete observer Key Points - ethnographer: typically a participant observer who uses interviews and documents - ethnographer may adopt overt or covert role, but the latter comes with serious ethical difficulties - Key informants frequently play an important role in ethnography, but care is needed to ensure that their impact on the research is not excessive. - Ethical considerations when conducting Ethnography - Researcher and participants' safety - Informed consent and voluntary participation in the study - Power imbalances between researcher and participants (when studying native tribes) - Participation in illegal activities - Risk of encouraging certain behaviors to show off for researcher SLIDE 12 Lecture#9­ Research Ethics Readings: Bryman, Teevan and Bell, 2012 –Chapter 11 - The first priority of a social researcher: to ensure that the people being studied are not harmed by their participation. (Bryman, 2012) - In Canada, most research must comply with the TCPS2 (Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans. - Van den Hoonaard (2001) has suggested that it may be more difficult to get ethics approval for qualitative research than for quantitative studies. Qualitative research is sometimes considered less scientific than the qualitative kind, and ethics committees may prefer the epistemology of the latter, with its derived hypotheses and specific plans. This can be a fatal problem, because if the REB rejects the research proposal, the work can neither receive funding nor be carried out. - In Canada, REB must review and approve the projects even before the potential participants are asked, if the study involves any human subjects. General Ethical principles 3 core principles for the conduct of research involving human subjects by the TCPS2: respect for persons, concern for welfare, and justice. Respect for persons - humans should not be treated as mere 'objects' or means to an end (even if the study result is a worthy one, it can't justify the use of unethical means. - Research must recognize that
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