>Questions in Qualitative Research

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From our discussion of qualitative research

  • Shortcomings of qualitative research questions is that they’re often too focused.
  • Don’t have enough flexibility of research questions
  • Should be broad enough that we can go into specifics but can change at the same time
  • components of a research question
    • context
    • participants (community)
  • hardest thing to come to is initial question

As we get to our findings, the research questions change. That makes qualitative research and dissertation antithetical because we have to write a proposal in which research questions are set. Even though the questions change due to the research.

Theoretical framework guides research questions. (Finally! An order!)

The literature review comes out of the ideas of the research questions. The way the questions are analyzed become the legs of the literature review.

*Note: Grounded theory is a theoretical framework and a methodology–it also means the “absence of theory.”

What we ask ourselves with research questions:

  • Is it a yes/no question? 
    • Questions with the word “can” can get you in trouble
    • Use words like how, how do
    • We are concerned with how people make meaning in qual. research
  • Are there multiple things going on in the question?
  • What assumptions are we making about ideas or groups of people?
  • Are there ideas to correlation between two or more topics (that’s kinda quantitative, innit?)
  • Is it looking at the phenomenon I’m interested in?
  • Where do I get my literature?
  • Which question (of the subquestions) is your “so what” question. Marshall and Rossman (2010) call it “should-do-ability”
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