Sunday, March 29, 2009

Update to Motivate!

I've been back from the GT Seminar for a little more than a week now. I have met with my adviser, and she likes what is happening. I have spent time with family and got everyone's emotions somewhat settled after my time away. I have also spent time catching up on friends whose marriages and lives are falling apart, and plugging all my clients into sessions again. And on a personal level, I have been doing a lot of soul-searching, reflecting, and writing about a major change that God is taking me through. All is good. So what's missing?

Data analysis.

Over the next two and a half weeks, I need to sit down and do some major coding and memoing. Find those concepts that I want to move into given what emerges from the data (because, as the GT seminar advisors advised, I have too much in the data, and I need to choose).

I'll also need to do a bit of change in my consent forms so that I can follow-through procedurally for the purposes of theoretical sampling.

I have no fears about the next steps in my research. I just need to start.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Grounded Theory Seminar

Thoroughly enjoying the seminar! I recommend it to anyone who wants to learn grounded theory. And do it with Barney, because he's truly a genius at this! (p.s. he is also a wonderful person, once you can get past his old-style sense of humor.)

Friday, March 13, 2009

One More Reason Why Transcribing Has Been Slow

With reference to my earlier post this morning (Friday morning here in C-o-R), I remember now why it has taken me so long to transcribe: Technology.

I use a MacBook.  MaxQDA runs on Windows.  I purchased Parallels which allows me to run Windows on Mac OS.  All that is fine... on the surface.

For the past hour, I have been trying to figure out where to store my MaxQDA files.  I have to figure out if I need to store them in an encrypted folder (through the Mac OS); I need to figure out if the folder can be backed-up onto my external hard drive (check! yay.); and I need to figure out if the files in the Mac OS encrypted folder can be accessed by MaxQDA running on windows (checking and still having problems...).

It's no wonder transcribing has felt like administrative work.  I remember now: I *had* been doing software administrative work, and when interrupted, had been glad to acquiesce.

Grumble, grumble.

End of Data Collection, Round 1

Tonight I leave Country-of-Research.  I have managed to do 9 interviews over the past two weeks, one more this afternoon.  I came hoping to do between 10-15 interviews, so I am happy.

During my first week, I stressed out about not getting enough participants to interview.  And so I did a couple of pilots with people I knew.  As I did the pilots, I started to get a sense of the ideas being uncovered.  

Then the "real" interviews started last weekend.  One after another they came.  Some days, I did two interviews as I tried to accommodate my participants' schedules.  

After each interview, I said to myself: "go transcribe and code."  Until this morning, I have not managed to transcribe a single interview.  Why?  I can think of 3 reasons:

1. I don't like to transcribe.  It's detailed, tedious, and unrewarding work.  I am not good with administrative details.  It has been such a bother to just make sure that my files are ordered and de-identified with a coding scheme, keep my recordings encrypted, and ensure that my paperwork and records are in order.  Transcribing feels like a similar process.

2. I am too busy with other things like meeting up with people, doing clinical work (on the side), attending to family dinners (C-o-R is family's home).  I need uninterrupted sit-down time to transcribe. Yes, I'm allowing that to be an excuse even though I am fully capable of working in spurts if I need to.  ;-)

3. I am not familiar with MaxQDA--the CAQDAS I ended up purchasing.  I purchased it because it was the easiest and cheapest, but even then, I wish I had a little tutorial to take me through the basics.  Each time I started to learn it, I got interrupted by a phone call, or an email, or a knock on the door.

In any case, now that I've done some interviews, I have a sense of what theoretical sampling will be like.  In my mind, I can already begin to see the emerging theory (even without coding!), and have a sense of the kinds of participants I would want to interview in the second round.  But really, I need to be careful of "preconceived ideas" and ensure that my emerging concepts are well grounded.

I need to get out of bed, shower, eat something, and start to figure out MaxQDA.  Give myself a good two hours of uninterrupted time to do so.  Then I can begin transcribing... I think.