Qualitative research paper

Qualitative Research Paper Instructions

In the Argument Essay, you conducted academic research on your topic. You likely read about studies, theories, and both current and historical events and influences on your topic. This depth of knowledge, gained from written sources, has been integral in forming your understanding and developing your position on the topic. However, to really understand your topic, it’s also important to discuss the topic with those involved within it. This is where qualitative research comes in.

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Qualitative research adds the human story to the topic. It answers questions about peoples’ beliefs and actions. It relies on field research that you will conduct yourself, in the form of an interview, to add a human element to the body of research you have already collected and will continue to collect through secondary sources.

To successfully complete the qualitative research paper, follow this step-by-step process that includes assignments built into the next few weeks of class:

Continue working with the same topic from the argumentative paper, but push the topic into a new direction (the discussion forum this week will help with this).
Consult 5-7 sources that explore the debate or problem from a variety of different perspectives (you’ll complete another annotated bibliography to show your work here). You will be able to carry over sources from your first paper, as long as they are still useful and relevant. Note: at this stage, it is expected that all of your sources represent credible voices and information within the topic (academic, scholarly, professional).
Formulate a new research question that:
addresses an aspect of the topic of which you have not yet found a conclusive answer
is open-ended
is about what people think, feel, or do
Find someone to interview whose experience or expertise will help you answer that question.
Write a qualitative research paper that explains how your interview helped you answer your research question. Use the “How to Organize a Qualitative Research Paper”
document for help with organizing this paper.

Assignment Requirements

5-7 credible, scholarly secondary sources
1 interview*
Organize using the qualitative research paper framework
1500-2000 words in length
APA format – 7th Edition

*While an interview is required for this paper, you may decide to utilize other forms of qualitative research, such as conducting observations, focus groups, or multiple interviews.

Important Note: When drawing on human subjects as sources for your paper, it is important that you explain your intentions, purpose, and the likely outcome of your data collection. Here is a recommended script you can use as you approach the potential subjects you will use for this paper:

You are invited to participate in a [method of study, such as a survey, interview, etc.] on [describe research project]. This study is being conducted by [your name], who chose this topic to explore across 10 weeks during a research-based writing class. Your participation in this [method of study] is voluntary and will be used to [describe how info will be used and what they can expect about confidentiality or being quoted so they can decide to participate or not]. It should take approximately [minutes/hours/sessions] to participate. By participating, you consent to the information you provided being used in this study. Thank you for participating!

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