Theoretical versus pragmatic design in qualitative research
Joanna Smith Lecturer in children and young people’s nursing, School of Nursing & Midwifery, University of Salford, UK
Hilary Bekker Senior lecturer in behavioural sciences, Institute of Health Sciences, University of Leeds, UK
Francine Cheater Director, Institute of Health and Wellbeing, Glasgow Caledonian University, UK
For many years, discussions of the relative merits of generic and theoretical approaches to qualitative research have divided researchers while overshadowing the need to focus on addressing clinical questions. Drawing on the challenges of designing a study that explored parents’ experiences of living with children with hydrocephalus, the authors of this paper argue that over-adherence to, and deliberations about, the philosophical origins of qualitative methods is undermining the contributions qualitative research could make to evidence-based health care and suggest qualitative methods should stand alone.
18, 2, 39-51.
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