This book provides a comprehensive overview of personal construct psychology (PCP) that will help researchers understand the why’s, what’s and how’s of conducting a rigorous constructivist research project. From the theoretical underpinnings of constructivist approaches to the practical values of these techniques, these three expert authors explain how to conduct interpretative, constructivist research from inception to completion. Key topics include:  • Understanding research philosophies and paradigms  • Constructing and exploring personal realities  • Establishing effective research procedures  • Evaluating grids, mapping, narrative and other research methods  • Managing the practicalities of fieldwork  • Analysing and presenting data With activities and procedural examples from a wide range of disciplines woven throughout the text and two special chapters featuring in-depth case studies from a variety of constructivist researchers, this book helps readers grasp the tools, designs, and opportunities of interpretative research. An essential companion for both researchers and practitioners looking to understand people’s values, attitudes, beliefs, perceptions, or motivations!

Linking philosophy and theory to research purpose

Key Points

  • What is reality?
  • The nature of phenomena
  • Research philosophy and paradigm
  • Ontology
  • Objective and subjective
  • Realism and relativism
  • Epistemology
  • Positivism, interpretivism and phenomenology
  • Methodology
  • Deduction, induction and grounded theory
  • Quantitative and qualitative data
  • Quality in research


In a book such as this, where we seek to offer the reader practical guidance on approaches to research, it may seem somewhat out of place to start a chapter with a fundamental philosophical question: ‘What is the nature of reality?’ And yet, in order to establish a clear foundation for your research, such questions require attention. However, we are on safe ground because we are not asking you to produce, and we certainly do not intend to produce, a definitive answer. Let us explain.

‘What is the nature of reality?’ is actually ...

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