Qualitative Research in Education
Assessment Task 1
AT1: Discussion of a qualitative
Consists of two parts:
1. It requires you to draw on the relevant scholarly literature to
demonstrate your understanding of one research methodology, the
principles underpinning it, its methods and analysis.
2. You are required to present a critical analysis of three scholarly
papers that report on research using your selected methodology.
In 2,000 words, your task should:
• Identify the methodology;
• Locate the methodology in the relevant paradigm;
• Identify and discuss the key concepts and informing theorists
related to this methodology;
• Describe the data collection methods and analytical implications
associated with this methodology; and
• Critically analyse research methodology and methods reported in
three scholarly papers.
1 2 3
Suggested starting point
• Choose three scholarly papers that (purport to) use a particular qualitative
methodology. You may choose to use a methodology you are considering
for your own work … or not. Alignment is probably best.
• Recent papers (since 2011) are desirable …the more recent the better.
• Reasonably lengthy papers that allow for more discussion are better too.
• Best to be peer refereed.
• Part A requires you to draw on the relevant scholarly literature to select one
educational research methodology and demonstrate your understanding of that
methodology, and underpinning principles and processes.
• Consider the benefits and challenges afforded by the research methodology.
Reference to the research principles will help you here*.
• It is expected that the essay will be an example of scholarly writing that follows the
APA 7th style of academic writing and formatting of references.
• Principle 1: Research is not value free.
• Principle 2: The researcher always impacts the research.
• Principle 3: Research design determines the knowledge
• Principle 4: Research has impact and responsibilities.
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Part B asks you to select
• … and critique three recent studies published (preferably) in peer refereed journals.
• Each article must have applied your selected methodology to a particular project.
• You should use a critical lens to discuss how the researchers reported on the design
of the study.
• Your critique should be self-standing. Assume the reader has not read the original
research papers but is quite knowledgeable of the content of this course.
You may wish to consider the following …
• How have the methodology and methods been explicated and justified in each study?
• Has a clear and unambiguous outline of the research methodology and methods been
• Do the methods relate clearly to the methodology?
• Are the methodology and methods appropriate for the research focus/research questions?
• Can you see the thread from the methodology, methods of data collection, analysis and
• Do the papers display good technical ability (i.e., language, formatting, layout, references,
page numbering, length)?
• What was your overall impression?
Think about your analytical framework
Tracey – Qualitative Quality
• worthy topic
• rich rigour
• significant contribution
• meaningful coherence
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AERA – standards for reporting empirical social research
1. Sufficiency of warrants, i.e., scientific evidence should be provided to
justify the results and conclusions.
2. Transparency, i.e., reporting should make explicit the logic of inquiry
and activities that led from the development of the initial interest, topic,
problem or research questions through the definition, collection and
analysis of data, to the articulated outcomes of the study.
AERA – problem formulation
• Clear statement of purpose and scope
• Contribution to knowledge
• Review of relevant scholarship (literature review)
• Rationale for methodological orientation
• Link above to context (participants) of the research
AERA – design and logic
• Clear logic of inquiry
• Description of design
• Sources of evidence
• Analysis and interpretation
• Evidence for claims
We could also add …
• So what?
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