Self Report In Research Post Interview Procedures (V)

Afza.Malik GDA

Tape Recorder Interviews and Evaluation Approach

Self Report In Research Post Interview Procedures  (V) Evaluation of Qualitative Approaches,Tape-recorded interviews, Quantitative Self report Instruments.

Self Report In Research Post Interview Procedures Evaluation of Qualitative Approaches,Tape-recorded interviews, Quantitative Self report Instruments.

    Tape-recorded interviews should be listened to and checked for audibility and completeness soon after the interview is over. If there have been problems with the recording, the interview should be reconstructed in as much detail as possible. Listening to the interview may also suggest possible follow-up questions that could be asked if respondents are recontacted. 

    Morse and Field (1995) recommend that interviewers listen to the tapes objectively and criticize their own interviewing style, so that improvements can be made in subsequent interviews. Steps also need to be taken to ensure that the transcription of interviews is done with rigor (Poland, 1995). 

    It is prudent to hire experienced transcribers, to check the quality of initial transcriptions, and to give the transcribers feedback. Transcribers can sometimes unwittingly change the meaning of data by missing words, by omitting words, or by not adequately entering information about pauses, laughter, crying, or volume of the respondents' speech (eg, shouting).

Evaluation of Qualitative Approaches

    In-depth interviews are an extremely flexible approach to gathering data and, in many research contexts, offer distinct advantages. In clinical situations, for example, it is often appropriate to let people talk freely about their problems and concerns, allowing them to take much of the initiative in directing the flow of information. 

    In general, qualitative interviews are of greatest utility when a new area of research is being explored. In such situations, an unstructured approach may allow investigators to ascertain what the basic issues or problems are, how sensitive or controversial the topic is, how easy it is to secure respondents' cooperation in discussing the issues, how individuals conceptualize and talk about the problems , and what range of opinions or behaviors exist relevant to the topic. 

    In-depth interviews may also help elucidate the underlying meaning of a pattern or relationship repeatedly observed in more structured research. On the other hand, qualitative methods are extremely time-consuming and demanding of researchers' skills in analyzing and interpreting the resulting data. 

    Samples tend to be small because of the quantity of information produced, so it may be difficult to know whether findings are idiosyncratic. Qualitative methods do not lend themselves to the rigorous testing of hypotheses about cause-and-effect relationships.

Quantitative Self report Instruments

    A researcher collecting structured self-report data for a quantitative study almost always uses a formal, written instrument. The instrument is an interview schedule when the questions are asked orally in either face-to-face or telephone interviews. 

    It is called a questionnaire or an SAQ ( self-administered questionnaire) when respondents complete the instrument themselves, usually in a paper -and -pencil format but occasionally directly onto a computer. Some studies embed an SAQ into an interview schedule, with interviewers asking some questions orally but respondents answering others in writing. 

    Structured instruments consist of a set of questions (also known as items) in which the wording of both the questions and, in most cases, response alternatives is predetermined. When structured interviews or questionnaires are used, subjects are asked to respond to the same questions, in the same order, and with the same set of response options. In developing structured instruments, much effort is usually devoted to the content, form, and wording of questions.

Open and Closed Questions

    Structured instruments vary in degree of structure through different combinations of open-ended and closed-ended questions. Open-ended questions allow respondents to respond in their own words, in narrative fashion. 

    The question, “What was the biggest problem you faced after your surgery?” is an example of an open-ended question (such as would be used in qualitative studies). In questionnaires, respondents are asked to give a written reply to open-ended items and, therefore, adequate space must be provided to allow a full response. 

    Interviewers are expected to quote responses verbatim or as closely as possible, as would be the case in qualitative interviews that are not tape recorded. Closed-ended (or fixed-alternative) questions offer respondents alternative replies, from which subjects must choose the one that most closely matches the appropriate answer. 

    The alternatives may range from the simple “yes” or “no” variety (“Have you smoked a cigarette within the past 24 hours?”) to complex expressions of opinion or behavior. Both open- and closed-ended questions have certain strengths and weaknesses. Good closed ended items are often difficult to construct but easy to administer and, especially, to analyze. 

    With closed-ended questions, researchers need only tabulate the number of responses to each alternative to gain some understanding about what the sample as a whole thinks about an issue. The analysis of open-ended items, on the other hand, is more difficult and time-consuming. The usual procedure is to develop categories and assign open-ended responses to them. 

    That is, researchers essentially transform open-ended responses to fixed categories in a post hoc fashion so that tabulations can be made. Closed-ended items are more efficient than open-ended questions because respondents can complete more closed- than open-ended questions in a given amount of time. In questionnaires, subjects may be less willing to compose written responses than to check off or circle appropriate alternatives. 

    Closed-ended items are also preferred with respondents who are unable to express themselves well verbally. Furthermore, some questions are less objectionable in closed form than in open form. Take the following example: 

    1. What was your family's total annual income last year? 

    2. In what range was your family's total annual income last year: ( ) Under $25,000, ( ) $25,000 to $49,999, ( ) $50,000 to $74,999, ( ) $75,000 to $99,999, ( ) or $100,000 or more? 

    The second question is more likely to be answered because the range of options gives respondents a greater measure of privacy than the blunter open-ended question. These various advantages of closed-ended questions are offset by some shortcomings. The major drawback is the possibility that researchers may have neglected or overlooked potentially important responses. 

    The omission of possible alternatives can lead to inadequate understanding of the issues or to outright bias if respondents choose an alternative that misrepresents their position. When the area of research is relatively new, open-ended questions may be better than closed-ended ones for avoiding bias. Another objection to closed-ended items is that they can be superficial. 

    Open-ended questions allow for a richer and fuller perspective on the topic of interest, if respondents are verbally expressive and cooperative. Some of this richness may be lost when researchers tabulate answers by developing a system of classification, but excerpts taken directly from the open-ended responses can be valuable in imparting the flavor of the replies in a report. 

    Finally, some respondents may object to being forced into choosing from response options that do not reflect their opinions precisely. Open-ended questions give freedom to respondents and, therefore, offer the possibility of spontaneity and elaboration. The decision to use open- and closed-ended questions is based on a number of considerations, such as the sensitivity of the topic, the verbal ability of respondents, the amount of time available, and so forth. 

    Combinations of both types are recommended to offset the strengths and weaknesses of each. Questionnaires typically use closed-ended questions predominantly, to minimize respondents' writing burden. Interview schedules, on the other hand, are more variable in their mixture of these two question types.

Post a Comment


Give your opinion if have any.

Post a Comment (0)

#buttons=(Ok, Go it!) #days=(20)

Our website uses cookies to enhance your experience. Check Now
Ok, Go it!