Qualitative Research Practice: A Guide for Social Science Students and Researchers

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Jane Ritchie, Jane Lewis, Carol McNaughton Nicholls, Rachel Ormston
SAGE Publications, Dec 20, 2013 - Social Science - 456 pages
Why use qualitative methods? What kinds of questions can qualitative methods help you answer? How do you actually do rigorous and reflective qualitative research in the real world?

Written by a team of leading researchers associated with NatCen Social Research (the National Centre for Social Research) this textbook leads students and researchers through the entire process of qualitative research from beginning to end - moving through design, sampling, data collection, analysis and reporting. In this fully revised second edition you will find:
  • A practical account of how to carry out qualitative research which recognises a range of current approaches and applications
  • A brand new chapter on ethics
  • A brand new chapter on observational research
  • Updated advice on using software when analysing your qualitative data
  • New case studies which illustrate issues you may encounter and how problems have been tackled by other researchers.
This book is an ideal guide for students, practitioners and researchers faced with the challenges of doing qualitative research in both applied and academic settings in messy real-life contexts.


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About the author (2013)

Jane Ritchie is a psychologist and worked exclusively in social policy research throughout her career. She founded the Qualitative Research Unit at NatCen Social Research in 1985 and was the Unit's Director until 1998. She was one of the originators of the qualitative analytic tool, Framework, and teaches and writes about qualitative methods.

Jane Lewis was Director of the Qualitative Research Unit at NatCen Social Research from 1998-2007, and then Director of Research and Evaluation at the National Children's Bureau. Her career has since focused on research utilisation and implementation in child and family services. She ran the national support agency for evidence-informed practice Research in Practice and is now centrally involved in the development of UK implementation science and practice as a Director of the Colebrooke Centre for Evidence and Implementation.

One of the editors of the textbook Qualitative Research Practice, Dr Carol McNaughton Nicholls is a Senior Research Director at NatCen Social Research Crime and Justice Research Team. Carol has over 14 years of experience managing all aspects of complex, sensitive qualitative and mixed method projects and regularly delivers high impact research and evaluations to government in the UK. She specialises in research on sexual abuse, violence and exploitation with victims, perpetrators and professionals, and has previously researched homelessness, drug use, mental ill health and related policy and practice issues. Carol is passionate about the power of qualitative research to explore difficult but important social issues in a way that puts at the heart of the research those who have been affected by these issues, and also about the role researchers have to ensure their research informs real social and political change. Carol is also a Trustee of the Rape and Sexual Assault Support Centre (RASASC) in London, has published widely on a range of issues, regularly presents at national and international conferences and seminars, and is a trainer for NatCen Learning.

Profile: http://www.natcen.ac.uk/about-us/people/staff/carol-mcnaughton-nicholls

Rachel Ormston is a Senior Research Director at ScotCen Social Research, based in Edinburgh. She joined ScotCen in 2005 and works across both qualitative and quantitative methods. Rachel has particular experience in using qualitative methods in evaluation research.

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