Rosaline Barbour draws on her extensive teaching experience to provide a clear, user-friendly introduction to the craft of doing qualitative research. Each chapter includes examples of real-life qualitative data and a range of exercises to help students get a feel for the process of generating and analysing qualitative data.

Research Design


  • This chapter equips the reader to develop an appropriate research design.
  • It shows how to make a case for a specific piece of research.
  • Hints are provided on formulating and firming up research questions and the role of theory in shaping the focus of research.
  • It provides advice on matching research questions with appropriate methods, or combinations of methods.
  • It outlines the principles underpinning case study selection.
  • It explains the principles of qualitative sampling and shows how to use purposive sampling to advantage in order to facilitate comparisons.
  • The importance of sequencing of methods and timetabling are emphasized and examples are presented.
  • Finally, this chapter demonstrates the importance of placing qualitative research in context and equips the reader to critically examine the limitations of her/his own studies.


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