Use of the Observational Method in Qualitative Research Essay

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Introduction For a century, researchers in many disciplines and fields have widely used the approach known as qualitative research in their studies. There are many definitions of qualitative research that have been provided. Following are some of the definitions of qualitative research: “Qualitative research is a research strategy that usually emphasizes words rather than quantification in the collection and analysis of data.” (Bryman, 2008, p.366). “Qualitative research is an umbrella term for an array of attitudes towards and strategies for conducting inquiry that are aimed at discovering how human beings understand, experience, interpret, and produce the social world.” (Sandelowski, 2004, p.893). In the above definitions,…show more content…
Role of observational data and key characteristics of the processes of data collection and analysis. Observational data is one of the basic and oldest method to collect data used by the researchers in their daily activities during the research. Patton has defined observation method as a “descriptions of activities, behaviours, actions, conversations, interpersonal interactions, organisation or community processes or any other aspect of observable human experience.” (2002, p.4). By describing and recording all the data gathered from the observation, observational data can shows a comprehensive description of the incident and provides an insight to the scenario or setting. Observational data can be gathered by selecting a site to be researched or observed in order to gain in depth understanding of the research. At the site, researcher needs to carry out the observation in a very descriptive way. A very descriptive way means, the researcher need to observer and describe in detail by describing the place (structure of the place, ambient, interior of the room), and the people who are present during the research (number of people, behaviour, how they have dressed and their mood at that time). Other than that, researcher also should elaborate and making notes about the scenarios and the conversation that are taking place during
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