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September 2021

Beginning anew: Doing qualitative research

Journal/Book: Can J Sociol. 2000; 25: Dept Sociology, Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2E1, Canada. Univ Alberta. 97-107.

Abstract: This article reports on the author's first experience in qualitative research. As a social scientist trained almost exclusively in quantitative methods, the author describes some of the difficulties, dilemmas, fears, challenges, and rewards of conducting a study involving long intensive and relatively unstructured interviews. The subject of the research - the association between religious faith and personal well-being - is of less importance here than the methodological insights that may be of use to other quantitatively-oriented researchers who venture into qualitative work. Specifically, the paper discusses the place of the authorial voice, the salience of emotion and language in interview-based research, the need to reconceptualize the meaning of common quantitative terms such as ''data'' and ''analysis,'' Emd the challenges of communicating the results of the research in a very unfamiliar way.

Note: Article Perry BG, Univ Western Ontario, London, ON N6A 3K7, CANADA

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