PSY-40129 - Qualitative Research Methods
Coordinator: Jenny Cole Room: N/A
Lecture Time: See Timetable...
Level: Level 7
Credits: 15
Study Hours: 150
School Office: 01782 733736

Programme/Approved Electives for 2023/24


Available as a Free Standing Elective






Barred Combinations


Description for 2023/24

How do we experience the world? Why do we behave the way we do? Qualitative research has a focus on developing explanations of the human world, for example how we feel or behave in certain situations. Understanding human experience and behaviour is at the core of psychology and helps us interpret and explain both individual and social phenomena. In this introductory module to qualitative research design and data collection you will learn how you can research human experiences and behaviour using a variety of qualitative data such as interviews and social media. Stepping into the world of qualitative research you will also explore the theoretical and philosophical underpinnings of methods as well as reflect on the ethics of various qualitative research designs.

This module aims to introduce students to and develop students┐ understanding of qualitative research design covering research philosophy, ethical foundations, qualitative research questions and data collection strategies. The module will also prepare students for analysing data using qualitative research methods.

Intended Learning Outcomes

describe the main philosophical and conceptual approaches underpinning qualitative research and knowledge;: 1,2
design a qualitative project with an appropriate data collection strategy accounting for ethical considerations for the developed research question;: 1,2
conduct a qualitative analysis and report the results in an academic report;: 2
describe and discuss ethical issues related to various qualitative designs and data collection strategies;: 1,2
demonstrate critical evaluation in methods, part literature and the role of the researcher in qualitative methods.: 2

Study hours

Scheduled teaching:
Lab classes 12 x 1 hours = 12 hours
Independent study time:
Asynchronous materials 12 x 2 hours = 24 hours
Asynchronous learning (e.g. lab prep) = 12 hours
Research proposal writing = 31 hours
Qualitative report writing = 71 hours

School Rules


Description of Module Assessment

1: Report weighted 30%
Qualitative research proposal
Students will submit a 500-word research proposal (using an existing pre-registration form) outlining their philosophical foundation, ethical considerations surrounding the project, research question and data collection strategy. Research proposal must concern data in the public sphere.

2: Report weighted 70%
Qualitative report
Students will build upon their research proposal and source the data from their proposal and conduct their analysis and write it up into a research report following APA requirements. These data will be taken from an extant corpus - students will not conduct primary data collection. The 1,500-word report must also include a short reflection section on the ethical considerations of the project and a reflexivity statement.