Social Change and Development: A Quality of Qualitative Research
Undertaking a research project it is extremely important to choose proper methods, that will ensure valid results and outcomes. Qualitative research is a method of inquest applied in various academic disciplines, such as natural sciences and social sciences. It is also used different fields and contexts, including business, market research, social work, and education. Qualitative research is an explorative research that is employed to gain an understanding of primary underlying reasons, motivations, and opinions (Denzin & Lincoln, 1994). The insight into the problem provided by the research helps to develop hypotheses and ideas for prospective quantitative research. The assurance and assessment of the quality of the qualitative research is a significant issue that may be quite challenging for researchers, readers, and participants and may critically influence the perception of the results.
Primary qualitative research is used to reveal trends in opinions and thoughts, deliver a deeper understanding of the problem, and detail the issues. Qualitative methods not only concentrate on the what, when, where, and who, but have a strong foundation in sociology to understand social and government programs and examine the decision-making process ensuring the answers to why and how of the problem. The data collection methods in qualitative research may vary based on the techniques used. The most common methods are presented in group discussions, focus groups, participations and observations, and individual interview. The qualitative research involves the ordering, systematic collection, description and explanation of the data generated from observation, talk, or documentation (Kitto, Chesters & Grbich, 2008). The quality of the qualitative research is usually criticized as methodological criteria of research is not directly applied to qualitative research. Appropriateness, thoroughness, credibility, and relevance are usually used to judge the quality of the research (Seale, 1999). The trustworthiness of the interviewees or observed individuals is also questionable aspect to influence the quality.
In qualitative research, it is important to establish quality and trustworthiness using the most effective methods. The most common and efficient are interview corroboration, member check, prolonged engagement, peer debriefing, auditability, bracketing, confirmability, balance, and negative case analysis (Reynolds, et. al., 2011). The absence of the specific approach to assure quality can negatively impact the results of the research and be unhelpful for the researcher when the qualitative research needs to contain external scrutiny and guarantee confidence of the interpreted results. The quality assurance is linked to the assessment of certain indicators in research outcomes. Therefore, the documentation of specific techniques or methods, sets of criteria that influenced the research output determine and prove the quality. The use of diaries during the research to evaluate self-reflection will contribute to the quality assurance (Seale, 1999). To ensure the quality in qualitative research it is necessary to assess the assumptions, practice, and reflexivity of the position of the researcher, transparency of the decisions, approach comprehensiveness to the research questions and goals, responsibility and the acknowledged decision-making process, and ethical practice.
In qualitative research, the researchers play …