Research topic: Peer Influence on Teenagers in Emotional Distress

Data Collection for Qualitative Research


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  • Tell the reader specifically about the design of the study— the approach to data collection, analysis and report writing
  • Describe the characteristics of design

o Typical unit of measure

o Any other specific characteristics of design

o Subjects or informants in the study (may need to be especially conscious of anonymity here)


  • Steps taken to gain access to the subjects – if Institutional Review Board Permission was required indicate it here
  • Comment on any sensitive ethical issues that need to be taken into consideration to maintain anonymity of subjects


  • Indicate types of data collection used

o Observations

o Document Analysis (Meeting Minutes, Newspapers)

  • Qualitative data analysis procedure can be eclectic—unlike quantitative procedures which make distinct separations between procedures qualitative procedures can simultaneously engage in numerous procedures

o Collecting from the field, sorting into categories, formatting the information

  • Describe the process of “reduction” or interpretation that you will use to organize the data
  • Discuss matrices or coding systems/ programs you will be using


  • Discuss the issues of internal validity—accuracy of the information and whether it matches reality

o Member checks

o Inter-rater procedures

o Triangulation

Discuss limitations to generalizability

o Remember that the purpose of qualitative data is not to generalize findings but to form an interpretation of events, but you still need to indicate limitations to generalizability.

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