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My Experience As An Outsider To Study

Satisfactory Essays
My experiences as an African female who recently migrated to the US for graduate studies provide me with some commonalities with my study participants. My inability to understand and navigate the US healthcare system gives me a unique perspective as an insider to my study population. This may be the driving force behind my preference for my research topic.
Being an insider-researcher, I have a greater understanding of the culture being studied. I’m able to establish rapport with participants and facilitate truthful responses relating to the prevailing social interaction within the study population that an outsider may find challenging1. However, this position can introduce a form of bias as I may infer shared meaning from my respondents’ answers due to our similar culture, failing to delve further into responses. This may result in loss of the heterogeneity that exists within any group, as membership in a group does not denote complete sameness within that group as may appear on the surface until properly explored2.
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This may influence me to judge responses that confirm my assumptions about my research question as relevant and reliable while dismissing evidence that contradicts my assumptions3. Hence, this may introduce confirmation bias into my research when conducting interviews and data analysis3.
In conclusion, my experiences, knowledge and beliefs have the potential to compromise my research. It could influence the style, structure and order of my interview questions as well as analysis of my results. However, awareness of my inherent bias affords me the ability to take precautions, from the selection of the study approach, to using processes such as member checking to ensure the credibility and dependability of my
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