What is qualitative secondary analysis? How can it be most effectively applied in social research? This timely and accomplished book offers readers a well informed, reliable guide to all aspects of qualitative secondary analysis. The book: Defines secondary analysis. Distinguishes between quantitative and qualitative secondary analysis. Maps the main types of qualitative secondary analysis. Covers the key ethical and legal issues. Offers a practical guide to effective research. Sets the agenda for future developments in the subject. Written by an experienced researcher and teacher with a background in sociology, the book is a comprehensive and invaluable introduction to this growing field of social research.

Qualitative Methods

Qualitative methods produce detailed and non-quantitative accounts of small groups, seeking to interpret the meanings people make of their lives in natural settings, on the assumption that social interactions form an integrated set of relationships best understood by inductive procedures.

Section Outline: Two traditions? Core issues: interpreting meanings; holistic; naturally occurring events; less abstract; small samples; detailed accounts; inductive reasoning. Advantages over quantitative methods. Techniques; philosophy and temperament. Conflicts between academics: USA and Britain. Methodological pluralism. Overlap of qualitative and quantitative methods.

It is conventional to divide social research methods into two types: (a) qualitative or soft, and (b) quantitative or hard. This makes it easier to identify differences between approaches to research, in the form of a rough ‘shorthand’ way of talking about things. ...

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