FOCUS GROUP RESEARCH
A graduate level introduction to and illustrated tutorial on focus group research.
Why we think it is important: Focus group research is a valuable qualitative tool bringing out rich discussion for social science research, either used independently or as a supplement to structured survey research. It is not just "getting people together to talk". This handbook spells out the many considerations involved.
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Below is the unformatted table of contents.
FOCUS GROUP RESEARCH Table of Contents 3 Overview 5 Key concepts and terms 6 History 6 Focus group research vs. focused interviewing of groups 7 The focus group facilitator 8 Participant selection 8 Focus group size and number of sessions 9 Focus group membership 10 The consent form 10 Organizing the focus group 11 Planning 11 Timeline 12 Recording 13 Forming a session script 14 Overview 14 The opening section 14 The question section 16 The ending section 18 Role of the facilitator 19 Role of the assistant facilitator 21 Coding and reporting focus group results 22 Reporting and analysis 22 Transcription 23 Coding 23 Example of coding with Access, a relational database 24 Coding software 29 Assumptions 32 Sources of bias are numerous 32 The focus group as action research 32 Frequently asked questions 33 When is the focus group approach not recommended? 33 Is focus group research accepted by all qualitative researchers? 34 What is a "mutational question"? 34 What is the "graphic reinstatement" technique? 35 What is the relation of focus group research to social media? 35 What is FocusVision? 36 What is focusgroups.com? 36 Appendix A: Sample focus group consent letter 37 Appendix B: Sample focus group confirmation letter 38 Appendix C: Sample focus group contact form 40 Bibliography 40 Pagecount: 45