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A Triangulated Phenomenological Study in Social Definitions of HIV: Initial Reactions, Acceptance, and Coping Strategies

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By: Published: 2020 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases: Medicine and Health
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Abstract

In this study, I adopted a triangulated phenomenological research design. The methodology was triangulated in three main ways. I collected data from multiple categories of respondents, used two research methods (in-depth interviews and focus group discussions), and collected data from two locations. A triangulated approach allows for a comprehensive and in-depth description of people’s experiences with respect to a given phenomenon, especially in matters considered traumatic or sensitive, such as living with HIV, which was the subject of this case study. Through the triangulated approach, I was able to demonstrate that regardless of differences in sociodemographic characteristics and places of residence, the experience of being HIV positive is largely similar. One aspect of this study that went well was the meticulous planning of the research process prior to data collection. I obtained ethical approvals and authorization to conduct research, which facilitated the research process. I also formed a cordial working relationship with the personnel in the two health facilities. The planning helped me avoid pitfalls such as being denied access to the study population. However, the study sample size (49 in-depth interviews and eight focus group discussions) was too large. As a result, I generated copious amounts of qualitative data that were time-consuming and complex to transcribe, code, and analyze. If I were to conduct the study again, I would use a smaller sample size, such as 20 in-depth interviews and four focus group discussions. I would also consider conducting the study in only one site rather than two.

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