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Using In-Depth Interviews as a Primary Source of Data for Developing Case Studies

By: Published: 2017 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases in Education
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The case study presented here highlights a unique method of collecting data for phenomenological qualitative studies. Drawing from many scholars in qualitative research, Irving Seidman developed this method of in-depth interviewing with attributes of validity and reliability. It is a time-intensive method in which three interviews are conducted, each 1 week apart, to allow participants to reflect on what they have shared in constructing meaning of their lived experiences. The first interview seeks understanding of the experiences and/or events leading to the phenomenon under study, such as the complex lives of critical care nurses or special needs teachers. The second interview explores their lives in the moment, while the third and last interview seeks participants’ meaning of these experiences. Once these data are transcribed, a profile is developed using participants’ exact words to develop a chronological story of their lives in the phenomenon under study in order to extract the essence of their contextualized lives for data analysis. For the case presented here, the phenomenon of investigation was to understand the lived experiences of Latinas who chose to study engineering at university.

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