-Qualitative and quantitative are not distinct.” Dabbs (1982)
-Qualitative research methods are to demonstrate the fruitfulness and often the greater
depth of understanding we can derive from qualitative procedures. There are
significant lasting contributions of qualitative research.
-Qualitative research refers to the meanings, concepts, definitions, characteristics,
metaphors, symbols, and descriptions of things (In contrast, quantitative research
refers to counts and measures of things)
-Participation observation, including interviewing, uses methods as observation of
experimental natural settings, photographic techniques (including videotaping),
historical analysis (histography), document and textual analysis, sociometry,
sociodrama, ethnographic research, and unobtrusive techniques.
Use of Triangulation in Research Methodology
-Each qualitative method researchers use tend to impose certain perspectives on reality,
and thus reveals slightly different facets of the same symbolic reality. We can improve
this by combining several lines of sight and produce a better, more substantive picture
-See figure 1.1. Diagram (Multiple Lines of Action in Triangulation) p. 6
-Triangulation: three known points or objects are used to draw sighting lines toward an
unknown point or object, as these three lines intersect, creates triangle of error. What
we focus on is the centre of the triangle, the best estimate of the true object, or
perhaps, an idea.
-Triangulation is mostly restricted to the use of multiple data gathering techniques
(usually three) to investigate the same phenomenon looking for mutual
confirmation of measures and validation of findings.
-Important in triangulation: to relate the different kinds of data so as to counteract the
threats to validity identified in each
-Denzin: 4 categories of triangulation
-1. Data triangulation has three subtypes
-(a) time, (b) space, and (c) person, which has three levels; -aggregate, -interactive,
-2. Investigator triangulation: multiple observers rather than single observer of the
-3. Theory triangulation: use multiple rather than simple perspectives in relation to the
-4. Methodological triangulation: within-method/between-method triangulation
-Use of Triangulation: to refine, broaden, and strengthen conceptual linkages, and offer
varied perspectives other than their own
-Using two or more methods of data collection to test hypotheses and variables is the
essence of triangulation
-It turns out, however, this use of triangulation is limited, and no single method will
ever meet the requirements of interaction theory (Denzin)
-Nonetheless, using ethnography (“broad umbrella”), for example, includes a variety of
methods such as direct observation, various types of interviewing, listening, and
document analysis and so on. The use of multiple research design strategies and
theories increases the depth of understanding an investigation can yield.
-Qualitative research seeks answers to questions by examining various social settings
and the individuals who inhabit these settings.
-Interested in how humans arrange themselves and their settings and how inhabitants of
these settings make sense of their surroundings