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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Helene Starks
MHE 552
Seattle Campus

Advanced Qualitative Methods

Examines and compares phenomenology, discourse analysis, and grounded theory. Reviews the history of ideas and critically reads examples of published articles to appreciate how each method frames questions and produces different analyses.

Class description

ADVANCED QUALITATIVE METHODS This course will use a mix of theoretical and applied readings to gain an understanding of 3 qualitative methods: phenomenology, discourse analysis, and grounded theory. By the end of the course, students will: 1. Gain an understanding of (a) the history and philosophy that inform each of the methods; (b) the types of data/questions that are appropriate to each of the methods; (c) what the method entails (i.e., how you apply the method in practice); (d) the different types of results and products that would come from using each of the methods; and (e) the intended audience who would read and appreciate the analysis done using each of the methods. 2. Develop critical reading skills, becoming attuned to how authors use language to re-present their data and achieve the purpose of their writing. 3. Apply all three methods to a research topic of interest to experiment with fit and approach. 4. Write a methods section for a research proposal using one of these methods.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

The course will be taught in modules, one for each method. Each will begin with a brief overview of the philosophy, epistemology, and academic discipline that informs the method, followed by critical readings of published articles that use the method.

Recommended preparation

Students should have taken at least one course on qualitative research. Add codes are required and you will be asked to respond to 5 questions to assure a good fit and preparation for the class. The instructor will email these questions with your request for an add code.

Class assignments and grading

There are 5 written assignments: (1) A learning contract in which students will write a goal statement for themselves, articulating what they hope to get from this class; (2-4) 3 short summaries (one for each method that will be due at the end of each module); and (5) A final paper that will be the methods section for a proposal, choosing one of the methods. Students will use the same topic for all 4 writing assignments on methods. Topics that are of personal interest to students, such as a research proposal or thesis topic, are strongly encouraged.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Kelly J Canaday
Date: 11/14/2007