Semester 1 (Week 8)

Theses are the important set of notes I took after watching the YouTube video at the link below on 14th November 2017.

Video Topic:  Qualitative Analysis of Interviews


Phase 1 – Reading
(1) Quickly browse through all the transcripts, as a whole
(2) Make notes about your first impressions
(3) Read the transcripts again, one by one

Phase 2 – Coding or Indexing
Label relevant words, phrases, sentences, or sections
Labels will include actions, activities, concepts, differences, opinions, processes
Repeated, surprising, interesting, important parts of the interviews will be coded
Parts of the interview that refer to published reports or journal papers may be coded
Parts of the interview that relates to a concept or theory will be coded
I will be aiming to code for conceptualisation of underlying patterns

Phase 3 – Decide which codes are important and create categories by amalgamating codes
Create new codes by combining two or more codes
Create categories or theme by amalgamating codes
Disregard codes that I now deem to be irrelevant from Phase 2

Phase 4 – Label categories, decide the most relevant categories and decide how they are connected to one another

Phase 5 – Create a hierarchy amongst the categories
Display using a mindmap or concept map.

Phase 6 – Write up your results
Under the heading ‘Results’, describe the categories and how they are connected
Under the heading ‘Discussion’, write out your interpretation and discuss your results
Interpret the results in the light of results from similar previous published studies, theories or concepts from your field, other relevant aspects

Suggested Reading:

Alan Bryman’s book: “Social Research Methods” published by Oxford University Press
Steiner Kvale’s and Svend Brinkmann’s book “Interviews: Learning the Craft of Qualitative Research Interviewing” published by SAGE.

S1-Week 7-Class

Semester 1 (Week 7)

Theses are the notes I took during the Tuesday afternoon workshop that took place from 14:00 to 17:00 on 7th November 2017.  The tutors were Dr Claire McAvinia and Dr Ita Kennelly.

Topic for today’s workshop

– Research Methods

Learning Activity

Review your research question, methodology and methods.

Consider – how is it all lining up. Does everything fit?

Review individually (5 mins)

Review in pairs (5 mins each)

Justify your choice of methods/instruments to your partner (critical friend)

We will then feedback to the group?


We talked about

(a) recording versus note taking (recording was recommended)
(b) identifying the participants (or not) in my academic paper
(c) allowing the participants to vet the transcripts
(d) allowing the participants to vet the final paper


Something to think about…

Does the analysis of qualitative data involve some quantitative methods?

Does the design and analysis of quantitative data involve some qualitative judgements?

Questionnaire Design

Perhaps jumble up the negative and positive responses in a Lichter scale

Interviews as a Method

Interviewing: a method of data collection that involves researchers seeking open-ended answers related to a number of questions, topic areas, or themes. (O’Leary, 2010)

Interviews yield rich…..
(May, 1997)

Different epistemological conceptions of the role, different rules of the game and potentially different data…
(Kvale, 1996)

Interviews and Ethical Considerations

It would be considered unethical to…

Trying to get interviews at all costs
Not safeguarding anonymity and confidentiality
Making promises you cannot or do not intend to keep
Not being honest about the purpose of the interview or your intentions in relation to the data being collected

Interview Considerations (Planning)

Single or Multiple
In Person or Distanced

Interview Questioning

Structured – fixed and predetermined questions. No new questions added during…
Semi-structured – some questions fully decided, others might not be fixed. Researcher has scope to ask follow-up questions. Mixed framework for analysis.
Unstructured interviews – small set of self prompts to investigate research question. One question can lead to others.

Types of Questions


How to do a research interview (You Tube)

Commentary by Graham R Gibbs, University of Huddersfield

Interprets (summarise what the interviewee has just said)

Balanced (don’t talk too much)
Ethically sensitive

Bad Interview

No eye contact
Asking two questions at the one time
No prompts, no follow-up questions

Good interview

Have a good introduction
Ask the interviewee if they still wish to participate in the interview
Inform the interviewee that they don’t have to answer a question.
Use follow-up questions on interviewee answers.

Developing Your Questions

Decide on research topic
Generalise puzzlements
Create a list of research questions
Generate list of issues, topic, themes, subjects, etc


SL-Meeting 02

Supervision Meeting 02 (09/11/17)

The following are suggestions and action points minuted by me at the meeting that took place on Thursday afternoon, 9th November 2017 from 15:00 to 16:00 in Room 5041.  The meeting was attended by Caitríona Ní Shé (Supervisor), Claire McAvinia (First Examiner) and myself.

Action Points:

(1) Source literature relating to functions and patterns (pedagogy, learning theory, instructional design) before Supervision Meeting 03 (on 14/12/17).

(2) Define clearly what a domain model is before Supervision Meeting 03 (on 14/12/17).

(3) Study the Marksheet and Assessment Criteria in the Applied eLearning Project Handbook for:
(a) the Applied eLearning Project (pp. 22-24 ).
(b) Journal Paper (pp. 25-27).
(c) ePortfolio (pp. 28-30) before Supervision Meeting 03 (on 14/12/17).

(4) Decide when to send survey email to the Irish Mathematics Teachers’ Association (IMTA) before Supervision Meeting 03 (on 14/12/17).

(5) Decide how the WIP (Work-in-Progress) will be presented by me on 28/11/17 in Room 5037 at the LTTC.

Discussion on Interview Recordings:

(1) I had provisionally decided not to record the audio of the interviews.  My rationale was that this might scare off possible participants.  However, both Caitríona and Claire strongly advised me to record the audio of the interviews.  I have decided that I will accept their advice on this matter.  I will use a digital recording device.

(2) I was advised to create a ‘storage timeline’ for storing data emanating from the interviews.

(3) A decision needs to be made in relation to who will be transcribing the interviews.  This will obviously be either myself or a third party.

(4) A decision needs to be made in relation to whether the transcriptions will be full or partial.  There also needs to be some strategy in place regarding how much of the interview is transcribed as quotes and how much is transcribed as notes.

(5) The interviews need to be anonymised as part of the transcription process.

Discussion on Electronic Survey:

I presented version 1 of my proposed electronic survey.  Caitriona and Claire advised me to make the following changes:

(a) Begin the survey with some easy questions such as:
“What textbook do you use in class?”

(b) Don’t have two questions rolled into one question.  For example,
“Do you think that the idea of making connections between Maths concepts across different strands and within strands is a good idea?”

(c) In some cases, use a table structure (Likert Scale) and use statements rather than questions.

Submission for 19/11/17:

The plan for my submission for 19th November 2017  (as my piece of writing) is to produce a word document of about 1500 words containing:

(a) a brief description of how I plan to achieve each of the four short term actions from Supervision Meeting 01 (05/10/17).

(b) a description of what I intend to cover at the Work-in Progress (WIP) presentation on 28/11/17 in Room 5037 at the LTTC.

Next Meeting: Thursday 14th December 2017 at 3 pm.