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Qualitative Methods in Social Work Research


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Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Qualitative Methods in Context Differences From and Similarities With Quantitative Methods The Intellectual Life Course of Qualitative Methods The Formative Years The Rise of Quantification and Operationalism Epistemological Differences Among Qualitative Researchers The Pragmatic Middle Ground Evidence-Based Practice and Implementation Science Theoretical and Conceptual Frameworks in Qualitative Inquiry Some Are a Better Fit Than Others Analytic Induction and Abduction: Nondeductive Thinking The Importance of Concepts The Place and Timing of Theories in Qualitative Studies Reasons for Doing Qualitative Research Desirable Qualities and Skills in the Qualitative Researcher-as-Instrument Studying the Familiar Versus the Unfamiliar Values and Social Responsibility in Qualitative Research Introducing the New York Services Study (NYSS) and the New York Recovery Study (NYRS) Chapter 2: Choosing the Right Qualitative Approach(es) Six Primary Approaches in Qualitative Research Ethnography Grounded Theory Case Study Analysis Narrative Approaches Phenomenological Analysis Action and Community-Engaged Research The Six Approaches Revisited: Change over Time Mixing and Matching Qualitative Approaches: Risks and Benefits Introducing Strategies for Rigor and Trustworthiness Qualitative Methods in Program Evaluation and Implementation Research Chapter 3: Designing the Study and Getting Started Prologue: Addressing Ethical Considerations Early On Flexible and Iterative Designs Choosing the Topic and Making the Argument Reviewing the Literature Developing a Conceptual Framework Formulating Research Questions Designing the Study Questions Posed (and Needing Answers) by Qualitative Research Designs The Element of Time Specific Aspects of Qualitative Designs Using Multiple Qualitative Methods at Different Levels Sampling and Selection Strategies Sample Size Considerations Recruiting and Retaining Study Participants How Many Interviews? Issues of Quantity and Quality Getting Permission(s) and Obtaining Rapport Presentation of Self Issues of Identity: Gender, Age, Race/Ethnicity, and Social Class Chapter 4: Ethical and Emotional Issues in Qualitative Research Deception and Disclosure Informed Consent Coercion and "Deformed" Consent Confidentiality and Privacy Distress and Emotional Harm Incentives, Payback, and Maintaining Goodwill Institutional Review Boards and Qualitative Research Dealing With Moral Ambiguity and Risk Ethical Issues in Community-Engaged Research Ethical Issues in Cross-National Research Taking it Personally: Emotions in Qualitative Research Socially Responsible Research as Ethical Research Chapter 5: Data Collection: Observation, Interviewing and Use of Documents Observation in Qualitative Studies "Doing" Observation: The Best (and Only True) Way to Learn Recording Observational Data In-Depth Interviewing Critiques of Interviewing: Realism and Authenticity Informal Field Interviews Focus Group Interviews Individual Interviews Linked Interviews Interviewing Children and Other Vulnerable Populations Key Informant, Elite, and Expert Interviews Developing the Interview Guide Elicitation Techniques in Qualitative Interviews Interview Guides for Second (and Third) Interviews A Few Guidelines for Starting Out Conducting the Interview: The Importance of Probes After the Interview Matching Interviewers to Respondents: The Effects of Age, Gender, Race, and Other Characteristics Common Problems and Errors in Qualitative Interviewing Emotional Issues in Interviewing Interviewing in a Non-English Language Interviewing Across the Digital Landscape Use of Audio and Video Recorders Using Documents and Other Archival Materials Ending Data Collection Chapter 6: Data Analysis Data Management: Dealing With Volume Early On Using Qualitative Data Analysis (QDA) Software Teams, Multiple Users, and Cross-Site Databases Transcribing Interviews Translating and Transcribing in a Non-English Language Qualitative Data Analysis: Beginning The Search for Meaning Case Summaries Theories and Concepts in Qualitative Data Analysis Data Analysis in Diverse Qualitative Approaches Content Analysis Ethnography and Data Analysis Case Study Analysis Data Analysis in Narrative Approaches Phenomenological Analyses Action and Community-Based Participatory Research Analysis in Longitudinal Designs Analyzing Visual Data Coding Varied Approaches to Coding and Co-Coding Starting Out: Identifying Code-Worthy Material Labeling Coded Material and Developing a Codebook Documenting Coding Procedures Comparing and Contrasting: Memo Writing as Forward Motion Secondary Analyses of Qualitative Data Hybrid and Mixed Qualitative Approaches Chapter 7: Interpretation: Recognizing Salience The Role of the Researcher(s) Framing Devices to Assist in Interpretation Using Qualitative Data Analysis (QDA) Software for Interpretation Saturation Bringing Theor(ies) In An Example of a Conceptual Schema Salience Through Absence: What is Not Said (or Seen) Feminist and Other Critiques in Interpretation Rhetorical Devices Negative Case Analysis and Disconfirmation The Six Approaches Revisited Qualitative Meta-Synthesis as Meta-Interpretation In Pursuit of Methodological Transparency Chapter 8: Strategies for Rigor and Trustworthiness Evaluating Qualitative Research: Standards and Strategies Evaluative Criteria and External Standards In the Eye of the Beholder? Attending to Rigor and Trustworthiness The Meaning(s) of Generalizability in Qualitative Methods Threats to the Trustworthiness of Qualitative Studies Strategies for Rigor in Qualitative Research Prolonged Engagement Triangulation of Data Peer Debriefing and Support Member Checking Negative Case Analysis Auditing-Leaving a Decision Trail Strategies for Rigor Applied to the Six Qualitative Approaches Dilemmas of Rigor in Action-Oriented Research Appraising Quality: The Rise of Checklists, Criteria and Guidelines In Search of the Big Tent: Balancing Rigor and Relevance Chapter 9: Telling the Story: Writing the Qualitative Study Preparing to Write: Key Decision Points Identifying the Audience The Researcher's Role in the Report Using Numbers in the Report Authorship and Coauthorship Decisions Authorship in and From Dissertations: A Negotiation With Few Rules Organizing the Report-Key Components Qualitative Reports Across the Diverse Approaches Balancing Description and Interpretation Writing Stance and Style Rhetorical Devices Suited to Qualitative Studies Writing Style: Rhythm and Grab Use of Metaphors and Other Tropes Challenges and Rewards of Publishing Criteria for Review: The Qualitative Dilemma Chapter 10: Mixed Methods The Epistemology Question in Mixed Methods The Rise of Mixed Methods and Their Rationale(s) Integrating Mixed Methods Types of Mixed Methods Designs Sequential Designs Concurrent Designs Complicated Designs Mixed Methods: Ways of Going About It Structural and Design Decisions: What, When, and How? Incorporating Existing Measures Into Qualitative Interviews Quantifying Qualitative Data Examples of Mixed Methods Studies: Implementation and Action Research Writing the Mixed Methods Report Challenges for Mixed Methods Studies Mixed Method Approaches to Program and Practice Evaluation Appendix: Writing a Qualitative Methods Proposal for External Funding Finding the Right Fit With Funding Priorities Getting Past the Catch-22 Setting the Stage Questions From Proposal Reviewers Budgeting Time and Resources Twenty Tips for Writing the Proposal References Index About the Author

About the Author

Dr. Deborah K. Padgett is widely known for her expertise in qualitative and mixed methods including this third edition and a companion text Qualitative and Mixed Methods in Public Health (Sage, 2012). She is first author of Housing First: Ending Homelessness, Transforming Systems and Changing Lives (Oxford University Press, 2015) and has published extensively on mental health needs and service use of homeless adults and other underserved populations. Dr. Padgett was Principal Investigator on two NIMH-funded R01 grants, both qualitative studies of engagement and recovery among formerly homeless adults in supportive housing in New York City. She served as President of the Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR), culminating in the establishment of the SSWR "Deborah K. Padgett Early Career Award" in recognition of her contributions. She is a member of the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare (AASWSW) and serves on its Board. In 2013, Dr. Padgett received New York University's Distinguished Teaching Award.


"Padgett is the ultimate 'pro' researcher, methods expert, and communicator. This is the one book you need for master's study, professional practice research, doctoral study, and your continuing research agenda!" -- Roberta Iversen
"Dr. Padgett's text Qualitative Methods in Social Work Research is informative and easy for students to read and understand. The book offers clear advice to students about how to design and execute qualitative research studies." -- Bruce Winston, Regent University
"Padgett uses her extensive experience to expertly achieve two seemingly contradictory ends: educate about the conceptual underpinnings of qualitative research methods, and provide the concrete steps needed to carry them out. As a research discipline that is often not fully understood by many, Qualitative Methods in Social Work Research will be appreciated by academics and students alike." -- Jessica Toft
"Padgett knows how to make students and even lecturers curious about qualitative methods and she copes in her book very well the gap between an overview and a deeper understanding of research methods." -- Armin Schneider

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