The Analysis and Interpretation of Qualitative Data

Description

Part 1

The Analysis and Interpretation of Qualitative Data

The purpose of this Major Assignment is to immerse you in the qualitative research process. The process includes hands-on opportunities for you to collect, organize, analyze, and interpret qualitative data. This qualitative research process begins with some items that have already been identified for you:

  • The research topic for this effort is the meaning of social change for Walden graduate students. You have been examining videos and reading about social change as part of the course study. 
  • The knowledge you have gained plus your reflections on the meaning of social change will form the beginning of the inquiry. That is, the research question you will explore is “What is the meaning of social change for Walden graduate students?”
  • The description of your efforts of gathering, organizing, and analyzing data will form the basis of your methods section. And, the results of those efforts—the analysis and interpretation of those data—will be summarized. 

This Major Assignment 2 is composed of four parts, each of which will be completed over four weeks. These parts include: Part 1: Introduction; Part 2, Role of the Researcher; Part 3: Results; and Part 4: Summary. 

For this week’s Major Assignment 2, you will complete Part 1. In this Part 1, you will begin to examine social change from a Walden graduate student perspective, explore positive social change as a research problem, and explore the gap in research.

Part 1: Introduction

  • Write a background statement of approximately 1–2 pages that includes:
    • What you have learned about social change as a social issue.
    • What you have learned about social change as a research problem. Support your insights with academic citations from the Learning Resources. 
    • Describe the gap that your study will address.
  • From the gap, create a brief purpose statement that is aligned with the following research question: 

What is the meaning of social change for Walden graduate students?

Part 2 

The Analysis and Interpretation of Qualitative Data

As mentioned in Week 5, this Major Assignment 2 is composed of four parts. For this part of your Major Assignment, you will complete Part 2: Role of the Researcher, along with other tasks that need to be completed for this Assignment.

To prepare for this Assignment:

  • Complete the coding for your first Scholars of Change video. You began coding this video in Week 5. Be sure to incorporate feedback and ideas from the Week 5 Discussion 1. 
  • Complete the coding for your second Scholars of Change video. You will use the same process as the first Scholars of Change video you coded. Be sure to incorporate feedback and ideas from this week’s Discussion 2. 
  • Consider your role as a qualitative researcher and begin writing Part 2 of this Major Assignment. 

Part 2: Role of the Researcher

  • Review your analytic memos, field notes, etc., written during each aspect of the data collection process, and examine your role and experience and how that is shaping your experience (reflexivity). 
  • Describe the roles you are portraying in this research effort (i.e., a graduate student, classmate, interviewer, etc.).
  • Identify any ethical issues that could or did arise during the data collection processes (i.e., these could include doing a study within one’s own work environment, conflict of interest, or power differentials). 

Part 3

The Analysis and Interpretation of Qualitative Data

In previous weeks, you completed Parts 1 and 2 of this Major Assignment. For this week’s Assignment and for Weeks 8 and 9, you will complete Part 3: Results. But before you complete Part 3, you must conduct your phone interview. Please note that before you conduct your interview, make sure you have completed your Discussion 1 for this week.

To prepare for this Assignment:

  • Review the Interview Guide Instructions and the Interview Guide Example found in this week’s Learning Resources, and use these questions for your interview.
  • Conduct your phone interview with your colleague from this course or another Walden student you selected. 
  • Make sure to record your phone interview for your transcription. (Note: It will be important for you to notify your interviewee that the interview will be recorded for transcription purposes prior to conducting the interview.)
  • Review the readings and media programs in this week’s Learning Resources related to coding and consider how you will code the data you have gathered for your Major Assignment 2.
  • Once you conduct your phone interview, begin to transcribe and code your interview.

Once you complete your phone interview, continue with the Part 3: Results section of your Major Assignment 2. You will continue to work through your Part 3: Results section in Weeks 7–9.

Part 3: Results

During this course, you have coded your two Scholars of Change videos, you have conducted and coded your phone interview, and you have gathered data from the Walden social change website and any other documents or websites you might have included. For this Part 3 of your Major Assignment, you will write up the results of your findings. You will include the following in your write-up:

  • Data Sources—briefly describe each data source including location, duration of data collection, how data were recorded, and unusual circumstances.
    • Two Scholars of Change videos
    • One phone interview
    • Resources from the Walden social change website
  • Instrumentation—briefly describe the type of instrumentation you used for your data collection.
    • Who developed each data collection tool and what is the date of publication?
    • Where and with which participant group has it been used previously?
    • How appropriate is it for current study and include whether modifications will be or were needed?
  • Data Analysis—based on the data sources in “A.”, provide a detailed analysis to include the following:
    • Report the process used to move inductively from coded units to larger representations including categories and themes.
    • Describe the specific codes, categories, and themes that emerged from the data using quotations as needed to emphasize their importance.
      • 1st cycle—describe, give examples.
      • 2nd cycle—describe, give examples/moving from codes to categories.
      • Identify themes—provide examples and illustrate your results with a figure or a chart.

Interview Guide Instructions 

1. Prepare!

a. Choose a recording device to capture your voice and your interviewee’s voice. Smartphones have a variety of apps for recording and downloading calls. Several are free. Some charge an additional fee for downloading the file. Some also have a transcribing service, but there is an extra charge. You can also use a simple handheld recording device. Conduct the interview using the speakerphone so both voices will be distinctly heard. 

b. Decide how you want to create the transcription. As indicated above, you can use a transcription service; they will charge anywhere between $1 and $3 a minute. Alternatively, you can transcribe the interview yourself by typing the text into MS Word. This is free, but time consuming—about 1–2 hours, as you need to record the contents of the interview verbatim. Be sure to identify when the interviewee is speaking, and highlight the questions you ask.

c. Create an Interview Guide Form. An example is provided in the course, or you can create your own. If you use this one or another, be sure to leave space for your notes. 

d. Prepare a brief introduction. There is an example in the Interview Guide Example. 

e. Practice your interview with a friend to get comfortable with the questions and the recording device. 

f. Set up your appointment. 

2. Conduct your interview. a. Test to make sure your recording equipment is working. b. Have your interview guide with you and a pen to take notes. Immediately after: 

i. Make detailed notes of your experience. Include how you were feeling during the interview, and your unspoken reactions to the interviewee’s comments. 

ii. Check to make sure the recording worked c. As soon as possible, transcribe the interview.

Questions: 

1. Can you tell me what program are you in at Walden?a. And what year did you start? 

© 2016 Laureate Education, Inc.Page 2 of 2 

2. How was working for social change important to you before you came to Walden? a. Can you give me an example of what you did? 3. How was the social change mission important to you in making your choice to come to Walden? a. Please describe how it was important/not important to you. 4. From your perspective, what is social change?a. Can you give me some examples of what you mean by that?

Part 3 (b)

The Analysis and Interpretation of Qualitative Data

For this Major Assignment 2, you will continue your work on the Part 3: Results section. Specifically, you will begin your analysis and prepare your presentation of your results from your three data sources. The three data sources include:

  • Two Scholars of Change videos
  • Phone interview
  • Resources from the Walden social change website

Analyze and prepare your presentation of results from your three data sources. Also, part of your analysis is to create categories and themes of your findings.

To prepare for this Assignment:

  • Review this week’s Learning Resources to guide you as you analyze and prepare your presentation of results.
  • Analyze the three data sources to create categories and themes of your findings 
    • Two Scholars of Change videos
    • Phone interview
    • Resources from the Walden social change website
  • Once you have completed your analysis, prepare your presentation of results from your three data sources.

Part 3: Results

During this course, you have coded your two Scholars of Change videos, you have conducted and coded your phone interview, and you have gathered data from the Walden social change website and any other documents or websites you might have included. For this Part 3 of your Major Assignment, you will write up the results of your findings. You will include the following in your write-up:

  • Data Sources—briefly describe each data source including location, duration of data collection, how data were recorded, and unusual circumstances.
    • Two Scholars of Change videos
    • One phone interview
    • Resources from the Walden social change website
  • Instrumentation—briefly describe the type of instrumentation you used for your data collection.
    • Who developed each data collection tool and what is the date of publication?
    • Where and with which participant group has it been used previously?
    • How appropriate is it for current study and include whether modifications will be or were needed?
  • Data Analysis—based on the data sources in “A.”, provide a detailed analysis to include the following:
    • Report the process used to move inductively from coded units to larger representations including categories and themes.
    • Describe the specific codes, categories, and themes that emerged from the data using quotations as needed to emphasize their importance.
      • 1st cycle—describe, give examples.
      • 2nd cycle—describe, give examples/moving from codes to categories.
      • Identify themes—provide examples and illustrate your results with a figure or a chart.

Part 4

The Analysis and Interpretation of Qualitative Data

For this Major Assignment 2, you will finalize your analysis in your Part 3, Results section, and finalize your presentation of results from the different data sources. Also, for this week, you will complete the Part 4, Trustworthiness and Summary section to finalize the last part of this Major Assignment 2.

To prepare for this Assignment:

  • Review the social change articles found in this week’s Learning Resources.

Part 4: Trustworthiness and Summary

  • Trustworthiness—summarize across the different data sources and respond to the following:

Summary

  • Based on the results of your analyses, how would you answer the question: “What is the meaning of social change for Walden graduate students?”
  • Self-Reflection—Has your own understanding of you as a positive social change agent changed? Explain your reasoning.
  • Based on your review of the three articles on social change, which one is aligned with your interests regarding social change and why? 

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