WK4-DQ-RSCH 8310

Discussion: Purposeful Sampling and Saturation

What is a good sample in qualitative research? It is NOT about size or generalization.

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The answer lies in how clearly you articulate the criteria for selecting data sources; (b) your ability to purposefully select cases; and (c) the extent to which those cases are “information-rich… for in-depth study” (Patton, 2015, p. 264) with respect to the purpose of the study.

As you prepare for this week’s Discussion, consider turning your attention to the variety of purposeful sampling strategies you may consider in developing your research plan. Also consider that qualitative researchers seek a threshold or cut-off point for when to stop collecting data. There is no magic number (although there are guidelines). Rather, saturation occurs as an interface between the researcher and the data and (b) between data collection and data analysis to determine when enough is enough.

For this Discussion, you will critique a sampling strategy used in a research article.

To prepare for this Discussion:

Review the Guest, Bunce, and Johnson article; the Yob and Brewer article; and the Learning Resources related to sampling and saturation for this week.
Prepare a critique of the sampling strategy used by Yob and Brewer (n.d.). Include the following your critique:

The purpose of the study
Research questions

The type of purposeful sampling strategy the researchers applied. (Note: Use Table 4.3 in the Ravitch & Carl text or from Patton’s Chapter 5 to identify and describe the strategy that you think best fits what they described.)
An alternative sampling strategy that the researchers could have considered. Explain your choice in terms of how the strategy is consistent with their research purpose and criteria for selecting cases.
Provide a data saturation definition and evaluate the work of the researchers in this article regarding their efforts to achieve data saturation. Note what the researchers could have done differently to convince you that the relevant and important themes emerged.
Be sure to support your main post and response post with reference to the week’s Learning Resources and other scholarly evidence in APA style.

By Day 5
Respond to at least one of your colleagues’ posts and explain:

Welcome to Week Four!
Posted on: Sunday, June 21, 2020 8:54:51 PM EDT

IMPORTANT – Please do not proceed with the week four paper until you have an approved purpose statement and research question in the week 3, DQ1 forum. Continue working with me in the week 3, DQ1 forum until your content is explicitly approved.

Hi Class,

We are moving along nicely. As you are starting to see, and what was experienced with the design of research questions, there are rules involved in how we design every aspect of the qualitative project. There is no room for generalizations, informal use of language, or lack of alignment between research purpose and research question. We also saw that not all sources are peer-reviewed research articles, and not all articles follow the ‘best practices’ rules for research design, including the phrasing of the qualitative research question. Your critical assessment of your chosen research articles will play an important role in the dissertation process, this includes being able to spot poorly designed studies.

Discussion One (due Thursday)

There is only one discussion prompt this week. You will review the Yob and Brewer article (2 pages) in order to critique it against some of these qualitative best practices and policies. As usual, please be sure to carefully read and reflect on the course information before posting your discussion post. Here are the required headings to help organize your thoughts, maintain the flow of information, and ensure each component is addressed:

Reminder: this is not just a summary of the article. It is a critique of various aspects of its design and recommendations for improvements. Here are the headings:


Research Questions

Site Selection

Sampling Strategy

Alternative Data Collection


Response Post (due Friday): assist your classmates in their critique. Was there something they missed? What? Was there something you missed that they did not? What was it? Do you agree with their assessments? Responses must be substantive and reflective.

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