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Integrating Qualitative Research into Quantitative Research


Integrating Qualitative Research into Quantitative Research Module 3 Sessions 10&11 Introduction Synopsis: This session will entail a discussion on why and how to ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Integrating Qualitative Research into Quantitative Research

Integrating Qualitative Research into
Quantitative Research
  • Module 3
  • Sessions 1011

  • Synopsis This session will entail a discussion
    on why and how to integrate qualitative research
    into quantitative research
  • Learning Objectives At the end of this session
    participants should have developed an
    understanding of why and how to integrate
    qualitative research with quantitative research
    work. They should also appreciate the need for
    integrating qualitative into quantitative
    research approaches

  • Selecting a sample and collecting data using
    Focus Group Discussions, Key Informant Interviews
    and Observation.
  • Output participants will collect qualitative
    data using any of the qualitative methods

  • Activity 1 Introduce qualitative research to the
    participants 30 min
  • Activity 2 Help the participants appreciate the
    complimentary role of qualitative methods 30min
  • Activity 3Explain the different qualitative
    methods 60min
  • Activity 4 Discuss the advantages and
    disadvantages of the methods above 30min
  • Activity 5 Practicals / Presentations within the
    participants 180min

Why Integrate qualitative and quantitative methods
  • Basing on the strengths and weaknesses/advantages
    and disadvantages of quantitative methods used
  • For example Results from the quantitative
    research can be generalized while those of
    qualitative may not
  • Quantitative research may answer when, what,
    who, how but not why which can be answered by
    qualitative research

  • It is not for the sake of integrating the two
    methods but some better results must be realized
  • Qualitative research is effective in identifying
    intangible factors such as social norms, gender
    roles, whose role in research may not be readily

  • Qualitative research emphasizes quality than
    quantity, depth more than breadth, insights
    rather than generalization
  • When used along with quantitative data, it helps
    interpret and better understand the complex
    reality of a given situation and the implications
    of quantitative data

How to integrate the two methods
  • Therefore, identify the strengths/weaknesses of
    the primary method
  • Then identify a secondary method which can fill
    in the gaps

What is Qualitative Research?
  • This is a type of scientific Research which
    collects, analyzes and interprets data that
    cannot easily be reduced to numbers
  • This type of data relates to the social world and
    the concepts and behaviors of people within it
  • Qualitative research seeks to understand a given
    research problem or topic from the
    perspective/view point of the population under
    the study

  • It seeks to promote greater understanding not
    only of the way things are, but also of why they
    are the way they are
  • It is works best in obtaining culturally specific
    information about the values, opinions,
    behaviors, and social contexts of a particular
  • The purpose of qualitative research is to produce
    rich data from a sample chosen for its ability to
    speak to the issue

  • Qualitative research emphasizes quality than
    quantity, depth more than breadth, insights
    rather than generalization
  • When used along with quantitative data, it helps
    interpret and better understand the complex
    reality of a given situation and the implications
    of quantitative data

Characteristics of Qualitative Research
  • Asks why, how, and under what circumstances
    things occur
  • Seeks Depth of Understanding
  • Views Social phenomena holistically
  • Explores and discovers
  • Provides insight into the meanings of decisions
    and actions
  • Uses interpretive and other open-ended methods

  • Is iterative rather than fixed
  • Its is emergent rather than pre structured
  • Involves respondents as active participants
    rather than subjects
  • Defines the investigator as an instrument in the
    research process

Qualitative research methods
  • These are several methods within this form of
    research of which are-
  • Focus group discussions
  • Key Informant Interviews
  • Observations

  • A group of 6-12 is assembled and engaged in an
    interaction to produce data and insights that
    would be less accessible without the interaction
  • The group put together should be fairly
    homogenous Social status, experience/user
    status, sex, age etc
  • It useful in identifying normative issues, terms,
    perceptions, attitudes, beliefs, interpretation,
    from a group of individuals
  • Moderator is needed to guide and lead the
    discussion in a focused manner

  • Note taker, in charge of note taking and non
    verbal communication
  • Tape recording is a requirement (ask for
  • Planned in advance, debriefing sessions
  • Is useful especially with beneficiaries
  • This is a type of Qualitative Research in which
    the researcher brings together small groups of
    people, 612 in number

  • The Researcher plays the role of a modulator, and
    with an open instrument, the researcher engages
    the group in a discussion about the subject under
  • The group is homogeneous in terms of the relevant
    variables for the study.
  • It essentially relies on convenient sampling or
    Purposive sampling
  • If not well moderated with in depth probing may
    not yield enough data

  • Dominating characters should be controlled
  • Timid Characters encouraged to participate

These FGDs are basically used for
  • securing background information
  • Getting feed back from project beneficiaries
  • Interpreting available quantitative data
  • Project monitoring and evaluation
  • Assessing responses to recommend for innovations,
    policies etc

Advantages of using Focus Group Discussions
  • It enables rapid generation of information
  • It reduces individual inhibitions and hindrances
  • It helps respondents to raise issues and concerns
    that the investigation may not have considered
  • They allow an interaction between the respondents
    and the investigator, creating a more in depth
    understanding of peoples understanding and lives.

  • Its flexibility allows the researcher to use the
    responses to frame relevant and necessary
  • Its flexibility allows the researcher to use the
    responses to frame relevant and necessary

Disadvantages of using Focus Group Discussions
  • Empirical generalisations cannot be from the data
  • Liable to interviewer biases since these are no
    structural questions
  • May lead to fear of giving personal sensitive
  • Despite the presence of the moderator, there are
    people who always dominate and those who cannot
    express themselves in-group discussions.

Note The role of moderator
  • to control those who may dominate the discussion
  • to encourage those who may not feel free to talk
  • to probe in case need arises

Key Informant Interviews
  • These are informal interviews directed to the
    knowledgeable people about the problem.
  • These respondents may not necessarily be under
    the problem, but only with a sufficient knowledge
  • These informants should be selected carefully to
    reflect diverse views and concerns.
  • An interview guide with issues to be covered is
    used and it is carried out in an informal

  • Probes to elicit more information are made

Selected Sample
  • Any individual from which data can be secured
  • Experts/Individuals who hold special positions
  • Have special/unique insights/experiences

It is most appropriate when
  • A general descriptive information is sufficient
    for decision making
  • It is necessary to know why a particular group of
    people behave the way they do
  • More light/interpretation is needed on the
    available quantitative data.
  • The primary purpose of the study is to generate
    suggestions and recommendations.
  • There is a need for proper questionnaire design,
    hypothesis and propositions for further testing
    and refinement.

  • Since it is from knowledgeable persons, it
    reveals in-depth, inside information, to the
    extent of providing confidential information,
    which may not be the case in a formal setting
  • It is cheap to conduct this kind of interview
  • It reveals new ideas, relevant to the study,
    which may not have been anticipated, in the
    planning process.
  • Easy to locate potential respondents willing to
    give the information.

  • The information cannot be generalised and
    therefore less reliable (ie incase it is biased).

  • Observation is a purposive or intentional
    examination of something, particularly for
    purposes of data gathering (Chaplain 1968)
  • It is a careful watching and noting phenomena as
    they occur in their natural setting
  • Observation falls in two categories
  • Physical things like cars, buildings, chairs etc
  • Social process eg social behaviour, culture,
    community relationships etc

  • It is based on a checklist or a form with what to
    be observed
  • A detailed schedule with what to observe and how
    recordings are to be done is a requirement
  • There are basically three forms of observation

Non-Participant observation
  • May observe without participating e.g observing a
  • In this form of observation, there is careful
    watching and noting of events as they occur in
    their natural setting, without the Researchers
    participation. This form of observation has some
  • a) It is easy to identify the researcher since
    he is a stranger to the observed.

  • Some salient aspects may not be observed by the

Observation with some participation
  • This is where in addition to observation, the
    researcher takes part in some activities. The
    problems involved include-
  • The researcher may not observe some other aspects
    in which he does not take part.
  • The researcher may also fail to get real meaning
    of the practices leading to misinterpreting the
    information due to his own perceptions.

Participant Observation
  • Participant Observation brings the researcher
    into direct interaction with people and their
  • Participation in the lives of the community, to
    observe the daily activities of people, to obtain
    an inside view of the situation
  • Insiders or outsiders perspective
  • Involvement may be limited due to race, sex and
    other physical factors

  • In addition to observing the subjects, the
    researcher shares in the life and activities of
    those under investigation.
  • This requires living in the community for a
    considerable period of time. This help to
    eliminate suspension and the subjects wont
    continuously change behaviour. It also gives
    adequate time to study the events and practices
    under investigation and helps the observer to can
    understand and properly interpret the practices

This form of observation has some problems
  • Possibility of failing to play a dual role of a
    participant and an observer, one of the two may
    be compromised.
  • Once the observer is identified, he may fail to
    observe each and every aspect of the practice

Advantages of observation
  • Able to see and observe what exactly takes place
    in its natural form without any distortion
    first hand information
  • Data collected is up to date and there is no
    memory failure
  • Additional unexpected information may be got
  • Can be used when studying those who can not
    express themselves eg children, the deaf etc
  • It removes intentional lying eg about income
  • Removes error due to translation

Disadvantages of observation
  • In case of any suspicion, the subjects have the
    potential to change their behaviour and act
  • There is time constraint, in that some activities
    take place once for a period of time, so the
    researcher has to wait until that activity is
  • Some events are exclusive to none members and in
    such cases it is impossible to do observation.

  • In case of observer bias, the observer may select
    on the activities that are more interesting, and
    the results may not be complete
  • Can not get information on the past or future
  • Without enough skills, the results may not be
    exhaustive and may not describe in totality the
    events in the field.
  • There may be unfair and poor representative ness
    of things to observe. The observer may fail to
    select a representative sample of aspects to
  • Can not get frequency of events

Sampling in qualitative Research
  • Looking at insights, depth rather than
  • So Sampling is Purposive
  • Selecting a Sample for the qualitative study is
    not haphazard but neither is it bound by rigid
    rules of reproducibility
  • Sampling Techniques

  • Qualitative design is to explore depth, the
    investigator carefully selects cases than can
    typify or shed light on the object of study
  • Purpose rather than statistical probability of
  • Purposive strategies
  • Purposive strategies are linked to the purpose of
    the study

  • Select a sample from among the
    participants/community and conduct a
    FGDs/kii/observation research

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