I coach emerging researchers in qualitative research projects.
The Department of Research Capacity Development at Nelson Mandela University (NMU) offers my interactive training to groups of participants, but I assist also with individual requests. As me how I can help you.
I want to do this qualitative research project … but I’m not sure how to go about it’
The researchers usually describe a comprehensive need for overall guidance in their research design: from pinpointing the focus and main research questions for their project, to choosing and applying methods and techniques, followed by how to describe and analyse the collected data. There is always the underlying need to come to grips with what is called ‘the qualitative paradigm’.
Often Masters and PhD students have embarked enthusiastically on a qualitative research study, assuming that it will be easier to complete than a quantitative study. They are motivated by their expectation that the end of this project will signal their academic degree – and with that increased opportunities for employment, career options or promotion.
But, when finding themselves underprepared for the rigours and the methodology of qualitative research, the researchers’ enthusiasm flags. They say:
“I thought this would be easier than a quantitative study.”
“I’m not strong in maths and stats.”
Qualitative research, however, follows a complex methodological path of its own. To acquire the academic mindset and the methods and techniques for this kind of research, a student needs intensive coaching. It is not learnt only via theory and manuals.
Doing research needs to be taught by experiential learning. And this is a task most university departments struggle to fulfil – due to lack of resources to meet all the needs of their student population.
I offer 3 Training Modules in Qualitative Research:
- Introduction to qualitative research
- Focus group interviews
- Transcription, coding and analysis of qualitative data
Feedback on the training package has been overwhelmingly positive.
‘At last I understand what the qualitative paradigm means!’
‘Dr Janin’s knack is to make complex theory simpler to understand.’
‘Useful hands-on practice: from basic in vivo coding to more abstract levels.’
‘Dr Tim’s introduction to the Atlas.ti technique is so motivating that you want to continue with your research!’
If you’d like to find out more, click here to e-mail Dr Janin.