CQUniversity Unit Profile
PSYC13024 Qualitative Research Methodology
Qualitative Research Methodology
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The information will not be changed unless absolutely necessary and any change will be clearly indicated by an approved correction included in the profile.
Corrections

Unit Profile Correction added on 28-04-20

The Residential School for this unit has been moved to an online event. The event will happen on the same dates. Further details about the residential school have been made available on Moodle.


The deadline for Assessment 1 has now been changed to Friday, 12 June 2020, 9:00 AM

General Information

Overview

In this unit you will develop a toolbox of practical skills for undertaking qualitative research. This unit covers how to design qualitative research, conduct interviews, thematically analyse qualitative data and evaluate the quality of qualitative research. It explores challenges and builds skills for first time researchers such as developing a research question, how to build rapport and trust with participants, ethical issues in gathering data and reporting qualitative research and what it means to be reflexive in research. You will develop self-awareness and reflexive skills, exploring your social, economic and political positions and how these shape your views on the world. By designing and developing a qualitative research proposal, you will learn how to practically apply your knowledge. Qualitative skills are highly sought after in many career paths. Ultimately this unit will equip you with skills that are of benefit to careers in research, business, government, community development and education.

Details

Career Level: Undergraduate
Unit Level: Level 3
Credit Points: 6
Student Contribution Band: 10
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load: 0.125

Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px Calibri; -webkit-text-stroke: #000000} span.s1 {font-kerning: none} Pre-requisite: Minimum of 48 credit points (8 units).

Important note: Students enrolled in a subsequent unit who failed their pre-requisite unit, should drop the subsequent unit before the census date or within 10 working days of Fail grade notification. Students who do not drop the unit in this timeframe cannot later drop the unit without academic and financial liability. See details in the Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework).

Offerings For Term 1 - 2020

Mixed Mode

Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Residential Schools

This unit has a Compulsory Residential School for distance mode students and the details are:
Click here to see your Residential School Timetable.

Class and Assessment Overview

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Undergraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Class Timetable

Bundaberg, Cairns, Emerald, Gladstone, Mackay, Rockhampton, Townsville
Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney

Assessment Overview

1. Written Assessment
Weighting: 20%
2. Practical Assessment
Weighting: 30%
3. Written Assessment
Weighting: 50%

Assessment Grading

This is a graded unit: your overall grade will be calculated from the marks or grades for each assessment task, based on the relative weightings shown in the table above. You must obtain an overall mark for the unit of at least 50%, or an overall grade of ‘pass’ in order to pass the unit. If any ‘pass/fail’ tasks are shown in the table above they must also be completed successfully (‘pass’ grade). You must also meet any minimum mark requirements specified for a particular assessment task, as detailed in the ‘assessment task’ section (note that in some instances, the minimum mark for a task may be greater than 50%). Consult the University’s Grades and Results Policy for more details of interim results and final grades.

Previous Student Feedback

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Feedback from Self reflection Peer review Student feedback

Feedback

Innovations in the use of high quality audio-video production and the use of visual metaphors, animations, infographics and adoption of new filmic styles was rated with very high levels of student satisfaction.

Recommendation

Maintain and continue to develop high quality audio-video teaching videos.

Feedback from Self reflection Student feedback

Feedback

The residential school was a great success this year and though it was expensive in terms of time and money for students, it was widely described by students as a success. The residential school gave students the opportunity to connect socially with their classmates and enabled the tutor to directly supervise student learning.

Recommendation

Continue the residential school ensuring the learning activities during the residential maximise the opportunities for student social interaction and peer supported learning.

Unit Learning Outcomes
On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:
  1. Critically reflect on the philosophies and principles behind qualitative research
  2. Critique qualitative research in existing literature
  3. Exemplify qualitative skills in data collection.
Alignment of Learning Outcomes, Assessment and Graduate Attributes
N/A Level
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Professional Level
Advanced Level

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes

Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3
1 - Written Assessment - 20%
2 - Practical Assessment - 30%
3 - Written Assessment - 50%

Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes

Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3
1 - Communication
2 - Problem Solving
3 - Critical Thinking
4 - Information Literacy
5 - Team Work
6 - Information Technology Competence
7 - Cross Cultural Competence
8 - Ethical practice
9 - Social Innovation

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Graduate Attributes

Assessment Tasks Graduate Attributes
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
1 - Written Assessment - 20%
2 - Practical Assessment - 30%
3 - Written Assessment - 50%
Textbooks and Resources

Textbooks

Prescribed

Successful Qualitative Research: A Practical Guide for Beginners (2013) (2013)

Authors: Virginia Braun and Victoria Clarke
Sage
London London , United Kingdom
ISBN: 9781847875822
Binding: Paperback
Supplementary

Publication Manual of the American Psychological Society 7th (2019)

Authors:
ISBN: 978-1-4338-3216-1
Binding: Paperback

Additional Textbook Information

Copies are available for purchase at the CQUni Bookshop here: http://bookshop.cqu.edu.au (search on the Unit code)

IT Resources

You will need access to the following IT resources:
  • CQUniversity Student Email
  • Internet
  • Unit Website (Moodle)
Referencing Style

All submissions for this unit must use the referencing style: American Psychological Association 6th Edition (APA 6th edition)

For further information, see the Assessment Tasks.

Teaching Contacts
Paul Duckett Unit Coordinator
p.duckett@cqu.edu.au
Schedule
Week 1: Introduction to qualitative research: part 1 Begin Date: 09 Mar 2020

Module/Topic

Introduction to qualitative research: part 1.

Chapter

Chapters 1 and 2.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 2: Introduction to qualitative research: part 2 Begin Date: 16 Mar 2020

Module/Topic

Introduction to qualitative research: Part 2.

Chapter

No chapter reading this week. I will provide a qualitative research paper to read in preparation for this week's online tutorial on the key elements of a qualitative paradigm.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Zoom online tutorial (1hr duration): Two session options Wednesday 10am (AEST) or Wednesday 5pm (AEST).

Week 3: Planning and designing qualitative research: introduction Begin Date: 23 Mar 2020

Module/Topic

Planning and designing qualitative research: Introduction.

Chapter

Chapter 3.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 4: Planning and designing qualitative research: practical applications Begin Date: 30 Mar 2020

Module/Topic

Planning and designing qualitative research: practical applications.

Chapter

No chapter reading this week. We will be getting together to talk about your research topic. A set of discussion questions is provided on Moodle.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Zoom online tutorial (1hr duration): Two session options Wednesday 10am (AEST) or Wednesday 5pm (AEST).

Week 5: Residential School: interviewing Begin Date: 06 Apr 2020

Module/Topic

Interviews.

Chapter

Chapter 4.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Residential School in Brisbane Wednesday and Thursday. Attendance on Wednesday and Thursday are compulsory. If you do not attend the Residential School, you will not be able to complete Assessment 1. 

Vacation Week Begin Date: 13 Apr 2020

Module/Topic

Chapter

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 6: Qualitative research with Indigenous Australians Begin Date: 20 Apr 2020

Module/Topic

Qualitative research with Indigenous Australians.

Chapter

I have provided 2 readings for this week. These are research papers reporting on research with Indigenous Australian communities undertaken by a non-Indigenous Australian, and one undertaken by an Indigenous Australian. 

Events and Submissions/Topic

Assessment 1: Interviews and self-reflection Due: Week 6 Monday (20 Apr 2020) 9:00 am AEST
Week 7: Data analysis: theory Begin Date: 27 Apr 2020

Module/Topic

Data analysis Theory.

Chapter

Chapter 8.

Events and Submissions/Topic


Week 8: Data analysis: familiarisation and coding Begin Date: 04 May 2020

Module/Topic

Data analysis Familiarisation and coding.

Chapter

Chapter 10.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Week 9: Data analysis: identifying patterns Begin Date: 11 May 2020

Module/Topic

Data analysis identifying patterns.

Chapter

Chapter 10.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Assessment 2: Summarising qualitative research papers and developing a research question Due: Week 9 Monday (11 May 2020) 9:00 am AEST
Week 10: Data analysis: analyzing and interpreting patterns Begin Date: 18 May 2020

Module/Topic

Data analysis Analysing and interpreting patterns.

Chapter

Chapter 11.


Events and Submissions/Topic


Week 11: Data analysis: practical applications Begin Date: 25 May 2020

Module/Topic

Data analysis Practical application.

Chapter

No chapter reading. I will provide a data set of qualitative interviews to read which we will analyze together in a practical exercise.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Zoom online tutorial (1hr duration): Two session options: Wednesday 10am (AEST) or Wednesday 5pm (AEST).

Week 12: Quality in qualitative research Begin Date: 01 Jun 2020

Module/Topic

Quality in qualitative research.

Chapter

Chapter 12.

Events and Submissions/Topic

Review/Exam Week Begin Date: 08 Jun 2020

Module/Topic

Chapter

Events and Submissions/Topic

Assessment 3: Qualitative Research Proposal Due: Review/Exam Week Tuesday (9 June 2020) 9:00 am AEST
Exam Week Begin Date: 15 Jun 2020

Module/Topic

Chapter

Events and Submissions/Topic


Assessment Tasks

1 Written Assessment

Assessment Title
Assessment 1: Interviews and self-reflection

Task Description

Using the set research topic (social and environmental factors that negatively impact university students' mental health):
1. Develop five questions for a face-to-face semi-structured interview (each question may include a main question and prompts);
2. Develop a brief interview guide – include a short opening introduction (not including informed consent guide), some structuring information, and place your questions into a logical sequence;
3. Interview another student and record (audio only) your interview (interviews should last no longer than 30 minutes and no less than 15 minutes);
4. Write a short reflection on the interview process.
Steps 1-3 (above) MUST be completed by you at the residential school. You will be brainstorming your questions with other students on our unit, trialing your questions in groups of 3 or 4, giving and receiving feedback, and then re-writing your interview guide to reflect that peer feedback. You will have the opportunity to work on your written reflection (step 4) during the residential school but may complete that after the residential school.


Assessment Due Date

Week 6 Monday (20 Apr 2020) 9:00 am AEST


Return Date to Students

Week 8 Monday (4 May 2020)

Grade and feedback will be posted in your Grade Book on the unit's Moodle website.


Weighting
20%

Minimum mark or grade
PASS

Assessment Criteria

There are 3 components to your submission: your written interview guide (including your interview questions); an audio recording of your interview; and your written reflection on the interview. 

What to include in your written reflection
You should consider the extent your interview questions provided rich, in depth data to answer your research question. You should then consider what helped or hindered this.
Think about:
- Your introduction (did it set the person at ease by giving them a clear and easy to understand overview of what you would be doing together?)
- The wording of your questions (was it open, non-leading, short and clear, empathetic?)
- The structure of your questions (did you begin with more open, less personal questions, did the sequencing of the questions make sense?)
- Your listening skills (how was your posture, gaze and attention; what distracted you from listening well, what helped; how well did you include active listening responses?)
- Your responsive skills (how well were you able to adapt your language/questions/structure to the participant’s account, what helped/hindered, did the participant seem comfortable; what skills did you use to help elicit a rich, detailed account in the participant’s own words; how did you manage responding as a researcher not as ‘yourself’ – were there any thoughts or feelings that arose that made that difficult?)

WORD LIMIT: Your written reflection should be no more than 500 words. Any words over that limit will not be read or assessed by your marker. See the Psychology Word Count Information document for a rationale for this type of word limit restriction. There is NO WORD LIMIT for your Interview Guide but, it is recommended this be no more than 1 page of text.
INTERVIEW RECORDING FORMAT: You should record in an Mp3 audio format. DO NOT RECORD VIDEO (video recordings take longer to upload and to download, and may infringe privacy issues).
TIME LIMIT: Your interview audio recording should be no less than 5 minutes and no more than 10 minutes. I.e., you submit an edit of your 15-30 minute interview that you feel best demonstrates your interview style as assessed by the marking criteria and marking rubric.


Referencing Style

Submission
Online

Submission Instructions
You are to submit 3 separate elements: 1) the interview guide including your five interview questions [in a word document file] 2) your recording [in a mp3 digital audio file] 3) the reflection [in a word document file] of no more than 500 words

Learning Outcomes Assessed
  • Critically reflect on the philosophies and principles behind qualitative research
  • Critique qualitative research in existing literature


Graduate Attributes
  • Communication
  • Problem Solving
  • Critical Thinking

2 Practical Assessment

Assessment Title
Assessment 2: Summarising qualitative research papers and developing a research question

Task Description

For this assessment, you first need to decide on a research topic (this can be anything of your own choosing and should not be the topic given to you for assessment one). Once you have done this, you have three tasks to complete:

1. Find three (3) academic journal papers reporting on qualitative research on your chosen research topic. You can use any 3 papers that use qualitative methods on the topic.

2. Complete the summary table (provided) for each of these three research papers.

3. Develop a research question based on your chosen topic and the existing research. Write a short (300 word maximum) rationale for this question using the information you have recorded on your summary table. 


WORD LIMITS: Your rationale for part 3 should be no more than 300 words. Any words over that limit will not be read or assessed by your marker. See the Psychology Word Count Information document for a rationale for this type of word limit restriction. There is NO WORD LIMIT for the summary table, but it is recommended this be no more than 2 pages per research paper.



Assessment Due Date

Week 9 Monday (11 May 2020) 9:00 am AEST


Return Date to Students

Week 11 Monday (25 May 2020)

Grade and feedback will be posted in your Grade Book on the unit's Moodle website.


Weighting
30%

Assessment Criteria

The rationale part of this assessment brings together the research topic with the research you have summarised as part of the process of formulating a research question (which you will use again in your third assessment to develop interview questions and a research proposal). Your reflection will include the following:

1. A proposed research question that you have developed on your chosen topic.

2. Use of the research literature that you have summarised to develop a clear rationale for your research question.

The rationale should address the following questions (these questions are also covered in your textbook and in the pre-recorded lecture for Teaching Week 3):

- How will this research question make an original contribution to our knowledge about this issue? In relation to the research you have summarised in your table, does your proposed question explore a new area, will it take a different approach, will it be applied in a new context or with a new sample?

- Why is this research question important? You should address this question in reference to what your research question will contribute to the community you are interested in: i.e. how will it assist in solving an important problem?


Referencing Style

Submission
Online

Submission Instructions
Submissions must be in a MS Word file format ONLY.

Learning Outcomes Assessed
  • Critically reflect on the philosophies and principles behind qualitative research
  • Exemplify qualitative skills in data collection.


Graduate Attributes
  • Communication
  • Team Work
  • Information Technology Competence

3 Written Assessment

Assessment Title
Assessment 3: Qualitative Research Proposal

Task Description

This assessment brings together what you have learned in the first two assessments. You are to take the research topic and research question you have already been working with for Assessment Two, and flesh this out into a proposal for a piece of qualitative research. (The papers you summarized for your second assessment will also be useful in writing your research proposal, as will the residential school work on interviewing.)

We will use the Qualitative Research Proposal Proforma which I have adapted from the companion website to your textbook. A copy of this is available on the unit's Moodle site.

WORD LIMIT: The research proposal is a maximum of 2,100 words. This word limit includes in-text citations but excludes any reference section. Do not include any appendices, footnotes or endnotes. Referencing is APA format. Any words over the word limit will not be read or assessed by your marker. See the Psychology Word Count Information document for a rationale for using this type of word limit restriction.


Assessment Due Date

Review/Exam Week Tuesday (9 June 2020) 9:00 am AEST


Return Date to Students

Grade and feedback will be posted in your Grade Book on the unit's Moodle website within 2 weeks of submission.


Weighting
50%

Assessment Criteria

For the Research Proposal you will provide:

- a social and research rationale for your research questions using a short review of the key findings and gaps in knowledge about your topic;

- an outline of how you will collect your data (sample, sample size, recruitment) and how you will analyse your data;

- a discussion of the ethical risks of your study and how you will manage these; and,

- a discussion of cultural safety issues regarding the participation in your proposed project of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The marking criteria are a modified version of Independent Assessor Overview which has been used in the past for honours project proposals. A copy of the full marking criteria is available from the unit's Moodle site.

To help guide you through the assessment, there are also two examples of qualitative research proposals available on the unit's Moodle site, as well as three examples on the prescribed textbook companion website.


Referencing Style

Submission
Online

Submission Instructions
Submissions must be in a MS Word file format ONLY.

Learning Outcomes Assessed
  • Critique qualitative research in existing literature
  • Exemplify qualitative skills in data collection.


Graduate Attributes
  • Communication
  • Critical Thinking
  • Information Literacy
  • Ethical practice

Academic Integrity Statement

As a CQUniversity student you are expected to act honestly in all aspects of your academic work.

Any assessable work undertaken or submitted for review or assessment must be your own work. Assessable work is any type of work you do to meet the assessment requirements in the unit, including draft work submitted for review and feedback and final work to be assessed.

When you use the ideas, words or data of others in your assessment, you must thoroughly and clearly acknowledge the source of this information by using the correct referencing style for your unit. Using others’ work without proper acknowledgement may be considered a form of intellectual dishonesty.

Participating honestly, respectfully, responsibly, and fairly in your university study ensures the CQUniversity qualification you earn will be valued as a true indication of your individual academic achievement and will continue to receive the respect and recognition it deserves.

As a student, you are responsible for reading and following CQUniversity’s policies, including the Student Academic Integrity Policy and Procedure. This policy sets out CQUniversity’s expectations of you to act with integrity, examples of academic integrity breaches to avoid, the processes used to address alleged breaches of academic integrity, and potential penalties.

What is a breach of academic integrity?

A breach of academic integrity includes but is not limited to plagiarism, self-plagiarism, collusion, cheating, contract cheating, and academic misconduct. The Student Academic Integrity Policy and Procedure defines what these terms mean and gives examples.

Why is academic integrity important?

A breach of academic integrity may result in one or more penalties, including suspension or even expulsion from the University. It can also have negative implications for student visas and future enrolment at CQUniversity or elsewhere. Students who engage in contract cheating also risk being blackmailed by contract cheating services.

Where can I get assistance?

For academic advice and guidance, the Academic Learning Centre (ALC) can support you in becoming confident in completing assessments with integrity and of high standard.

What can you do to act with integrity?