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Qualitative Research Summer School 2018 banner

11th Qualitative Research Summer School


Narrative Research Methodology

5th - 6th June, 2018

Kitrina Douglas

Dr Kitrina Douglas
Research Institute for Sport, Physical Activity and Leisure,
Leeds Becket University, Leeds, U.K.

Narrative comes from the Latin root “narrare” meaning ‘to tell’ or share information.

The central premise of narrative theory is that humans are storytelling beings who have since ancient times have used stories to make sense, bring meaning and understanding to events, actions and behaviour and to give direction and purpose to life. Through creating stories it is possible to create an identity, a sense of place, belonging and community. Narrative theory provides an understanding of how stories shape and influence human behaviour, action, and relationships and in turn impact health and well-being.
An important concept underpinning narrative theory is that through creating and sharing personal stories people also reveal a great deal of information about their culture.

This two-day workshop will provide an introduction to narrative research methodology. We will consider ways of generating/collecting high quality narrative ‘data’, explore different approaches to analysing and representing data. Some knowledge of qualitative research is desirable. I would like to encourage students/delegates to bring a voice recording device of some kind as well as a transcript, an excerpt and/or section of field notes, a reflexive dairy from their own research for use during the workshop.

Thematic Analysis

5th and 7th June, 2018

Dr Claire Moran

Dr Claire Moran
School of Psychology,
University of Queensland, Australia

This one-day workshop provides participants with a strong grounding in qualitative thematic analysis and guides participants through the process of successfully conducting thematic analysis. 

Workshop Outline
  1. What is qualitative research  - The fundamentals of qualitative research
  2. Button activity -  - this fun and very hands on activity introduces students to practical aspects of applying codes and themes to data
  3. Introducing thematic analysis  - looks at what thematic analysis  is and what it is not
  4. Thematic analysis  - a step by step guide – this section works through the various phases of thematic analysis and includes instructions and advice on what each phase entails, examples of data at each stage and the opportunity to work through each individual stage in a pair work activity using two samples of uncoded data
  5. Helpful advice
  6. Discussion – any questions or concerns you have about using thematic analysis 
How to Write your Methodology Chapter

5th June and 6th June, 2018

Patrick Brindle

Dr Patrick Brindle
Programme Director
City, University of London, U.K.

This one-day workshop provides PhD students an introduction to the basics of planning and writing a methodology chapter for a thesis. The course is based on Patrick’s 11 years of experience as SAGE’s Publisher for Research Methods where he worked on over 200 methodological publications.

The workshop unpacks 20 main principles of successful writing about methods, and examines the points of similarity and difference with writing about other aspects of research. Many new researchers struggle to understand what is required of them when writing about methodology, and many also fail to recognise the potential in their own work for generating methodological publications. For some, adding a methodological paper to their portfolio of otherwise ‘empirical’ or ‘data-driven’ research papers may make the crucial difference in the next REF.

Using practical group, pairs and individual exercises throughout, attendees are encouraged to build their confidence and their knowledge base. Each exercise is designed to start participants writing or planning new sections of a methods chapter or paper, so that by the end of the course many attendees could have a working skeleton of a chapter or paper to work up later.

Finally, attendees will begin to explore how to use good methods writing to further increase the power and vividness of the other parts of their thesis or publishing output. Participants will have the opportunity to work directly on their own draft manuscripts during the workshop.

Appreciative Inquiry

6th June, 2018

Professor Bernie Carter

Professor Bernie Carter
Professor of Children's Nursing,
Faculty of Health and Social Care,

Edgehill University, UK

Within this one-day workshop we will explore and examine some of the key aspects of Appreciative Inquiry (AI). This will include examining the roots of Appreciative Inquiry and how it has been used in a variety of different disciplines and contexts.

We will explore what opportunities AI offers in comparison to other research approaches as well as considering the practical, moral and ethical challenges to using AI.

We will think about the underpinning principles of AI and the underpinning assumptions and address different approaches to structuring an AI study. We will think through what sorts of research questions lend themselves to AI.

We will consider what methods to use within an AI study and also consider how data analysis may be undertaken in an AI study.

Within the workshop we will also consider factors related to dissemination within an AI.

Interview Methodology: From Semi-Structured Techniques to Creative Methods

7th and 8th June, 2018

Dr Andrew Balmer

Dr Andrew Balmer
Senior Lecturer in Sociology and member of the Morgan Centre for Research into Everyday Lives,
University of Manchester, U.K. 

In this two-day workshop we will explore the use of qualitative interview methods. We will also consider how to be creative in the use of these methods. Creativity applies both to the approach and to the practical implementation of interviews and observations. All qualitative, semi-structured interview methods should emphasise spontaneity, serendipity and interaction, and this is even more important in creative interview techniques.

In terms of practical implementation, interviews strive not only to engage in conversation but also to use the situation rather than treat each encounter in the same fashion, and might make use of other elicitation tools in order to bring about a more situated engagement with research participants, such as walking interviews, object elicitation and visual methods.

We will consider some of the philosophical issues and practical challenges involved in such qualitative work. As regards philosophical issues, we will discuss the ontological and epistemological concerns central to the use of qualitative interviewing techniques and consider how creative work with the interview process (from recruiting to writing) relates to these concerns. The workshop will involve participation in some practical exercises and students will be asked to prepare for the workshop (details to be confirmed with participants) in order to get the most out of our discussions.

Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA)

7th and 8th June, 2018

Professor Paul Flowers

Professor Paul Flowers
Professor of Public Health Psychology,
Glasgow Caledonian University, U.K.

This two-day workshop will cover a basic introduction to IPA. The work focuses upon the acquisition of key skills need to deliver a high quality IPA study.

  • Day one focuses upon the background to IPA and addresses data collection and the development of good interview technique.
  • Day two focuses upon the process of data analysis and provides attendees the opportunity to work with data and develop their analytic skills
Understanding and Conducting Mixed Methods Research

7th and 8th June, 2018

Dr Rebecca Johnson

Dr Rebecca Johnson
Senior Research Fellow,
Warwick Medical School,
University of Warwick, U.K.

Understanding and conducting mixed methods research is fast becoming an essential skill in the social and health sciences. There are unique challenges and advantages to using mixed methods research approaches, and this two-day mixed methods workshop will focus on the ‘how-to’ of mixed methods. We will work with participants’ own research questions to develop, refine and better understand integrating data using mixed methods research approaches.

In Day 1, we will cover the epistemology surrounding mixed methods, commonly used designs, approaches to sampling and data collection, and the transition from collection to analysis. We will also conduct a practical session ‘Articulation through Visualisation’ where participants have the opportunity to map the ‘What? How? Why?’ of their research plan.  


Session title

Content description

Introduction to Mixed Methods

Workshop structure, why mix, Epistemology

Six basic designs

Describing and understanding the major designs commonly used in mm research

Articulation through visualisation: Developing and refining your mixed methods research questions


Visualise your design, structure your research plan, refine your approach

Sampling and data collection in Mixed Methods research

Contrasting and comparing different sampling approaches to data collection

Moving towards analysis

Hands on activity to explore analytical integration

In Day 2, we will focus on approaches to analytical integration. This will include a worked example of analytical integration using the merging technique ‘Pillar Integration Process’, exploration of participants’ own integration plans, and the day will provide opportunities to reflect and refine the above. Mixed methods reviewing and reviewing tools and approaches will be explored. This workshop will conclude with a summary of the key workshop messages, and a discussion of the advantages and challenges of understanding and conducting mixed methods research. 


Session title

Content description

Three approaches to integrating data

Introduces three common approaches to analytical integration

Integration example: The Pillar Integration Process

A worked example using one analytical integration technique

Breakout session: Your integration

Explore and refine integration within your own research plan; activity playing with sample data

Understanding Mixed Methods reviewing

This session covers the basics of conducting and interpreting mixed methods reviews, of which there are an increasing amount. Practical Activity included.

Summary and Conclusion

Brief recap of the workshop key messages, discussion of advantages and challenges of doing mixed methods research


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