J641 Qualitative Research Methods

Calendar and Readings

(Subject to change by in-class announcement)

Last Updated 3-7-07

(All are on reserve in the Knight Library)

David L. Altheide, Qualitative Media Analysis (Sage, 1996).

Barbara Ehrenreich, Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America (Hehry Holt, 2001)

Nina Eliasoph, Avoiding Politics: How Americans Produce Apathy in Everyday Life (Cambridge, 1998)

Thomas R. Lindlof and Bryan C. Taylor, Qualitative Communication Research Methods, 2nd edition. (Sage, 2002)

John J. Pauly, A Beginner's Guide to Doing Qualitative Research in Mass Communication, Journalism Monographs 125 (1991)

Qualitative Research in Journalism, Sharon Hartin Iorio, ed. (Erlbaum, 2004)


Week #1 (Jan. 8, 10)

Topic: Introduction to Course

Required Reading: Lindlof and Taylor, Introduction, Chapter 2. Iorio, Chapter 1. Ehrenreich, Introduction.

Supplemental Reading: Lindlof and Taylor, Chapter 1. Pauly, A Beginner's Guide to Doing Qualitative Research in Mass Communication

Writing Assignment Questions

Week #2 (Jan. 17) No class on Jan. 15)

Topic: Designing research

Required Reading: Lindlof and Taylor, Chapters 2-3; Eliasoph, Chapter 1. Iorio, Chapter 2 (Friedland/Campbell).

Special guest Jan. 22: Professor Scott Maier, human subjects coordinator.

Human Subjects Protection Information

Africa Study Draft Guidelines

Writing Assignment #1: Proposed research question and applicability of at least two qualitative methods, due in class Jan. 17.

Week #3 (Jan. 22, 24) Topic: Selecting Sources/Methods

Required Reading: Lindlof and Taylor, Chapter 4; Eliasoph, Appendix 2.

Research Design Considerations

Week #4 (Jan. 29, 31)

Topic: Document Analysis

Required Reading: Altheide, pp. 1-81. Iorio, Chapter 10 (Morris), Eliasoph, Chapter 8. Lindlof and Taylor, pp. 117-118.

Writing Assignment #2: Revised research question and preliminary report on availability and appropriateness of relevant sources. Due in class Jan. 29.

Altheide Overhead

Week #5 (Feb. 5, 7)

Topic: Participant-Observation

Required Reading: Lindlof and Taylor, Chapter 5; Eliasoph, Chapters 2, 4. Iorio, Chapters 5 (Willey) and 8 (Cramer/McDevitt).

Writing Assignment #3: Preliminary research report and analysis of your first qualitative method trial; implications for your research question and subsequent research. Due Feb. 5.

Observation, Research, Outline

Focus groups
Week #6 (Feb. 12, 14)

Topic: Interviewing

Required Reading: Lindlof and Taylor, Chapter 6; Eliasoph, Chapters 3, 5. Iorio, Chapters 6 (Coleman) and 7 (Iorio).

Writing Assignment #4: Report on participation-observation, including field notes. Due Feb. 12.


Guest presentation on oral history: Kathleen Ryan, Ph.D. student, on Wednesday, Feb. 14.

Week #7 (Feb. 19, 21)

Topic: Interpretation/Analysis

Required Reading: Lindlof and Taylor, Chapter 7. Iorio, Chapter 3 (Christians.) Ehrenreich, Evaluation.

Writing Assignment #5: Report on interviewing, including your list of questions and an analysis of their usefulness. Due in class Feb. 19.

Document Analysis Discussion, Feb. 21

Leaders: Jessalynn Straus, Abel Patterson, Ahran Park, Andres Sirois (?), Ben Raymonde Lode

Week #8 (Feb. 26, 28)

Topic: Essay Organization

Writing Decisions

Required Reading: Eliasoph, Ehrenreich Tables of Contents, overall organization.

Participant-observation discussion, Feb. 28

Leaders: Ammina Kothari, Windy Hovey, Sasha A. Rae

Week #9 (March 5, 7)

Topic: Writing the research essay

Writing Assignment #6: The organization and expanded outline (3-5 pages) of your research essay, pulling together the revised research question, selected methods, tentative analysis, and proposed interpretation. Due in class March 5.

Interviewing Discussion, March 7

Leadeers: David Gracon, Ben Myers, Alina Padilla-Miller, Windy Hovey, Sasha A. Rae (maybe).

Workshop opportunity: Reference Librarian Paul Frantz will be giving a workshop Friday, March 9, on two aspects of library research: how to find journal articles using the library's new Onesearch feature, and how to determine if the library has electronic/print access to periodicals using Findtext. The workshop is scheduled to begin at 1:30 p.m. in 301B Allen and is expected to last about an hour.

Week #10 (March 12, 14, 19)

 Individual Research Presentations

Monday, March 12: Sasha A. Rae, Ahran Park, Ben Myers, Andre Sorois, Windy Hovey, Ammina Kothari.

Wednesday, March 14: David Gracon, Ben R. Lode, Jesalynn Strauss, Alina Padilla-Miller, Abel Patterson.

Week #11

Completed Essay due Monday, March 19, 5 p.m..