Sunday, October 18, 2009

Yonghwan's Questions

Week 8: October 19 – Qualitative Content Analysis – Discourse & Ideological

1. It has been stated that analyzing media content was no longer understood as objectively examining or collecting data but as a “reading”; and this term highlighted the interpretive position of the researchers. Then what seems to be the interpretive position of the researchers? Quantitative research position vs. qualitative position? Can researchers’ demographic factors also be the case?

2. Continued to the previous question, it seems that even critical researchers whose research perspectives are generally similar may show different results of textual analysis with a same content due to the interpretive position of the researchers. For example, researchers with feminist theory and researchers with Marxist’s theory may have different focus on the content and show different results of the analysis because of different theoretical frameworks. It seems to me that this is one of the advantages of qualitative research, which is flexibility or openness. However, it seems very important to have valid and appropriate theoretical frameworks to “read” text. Then what seems to be theoretical frameworks or tool for textual analysis? What kinds of theoretical frameworks or tools have been used for this? For example, when conducting ideological analysis, what can be possible ideologies applying to analyzing text (other than elite vs. mass; racism; imperialism etc, which have been traditional ideologies)?

3. It has been stated that cultural studies or textural analysis “acknowledged the autonomy of cultural practices or objects as signifiers in their own right, independent of the intentions of the authors and producers or reception of the audience.” (Fursich, 2008, p. 240). I am little confused with this statement. What’s meant by this statement and what seem to be advantages of noticing this argument in terms of doing textual analysis?

4. It seems to me that textual analysis and framing perspectives may have similarity in a sense that textual analysis allows the researcher to discern latent meaning, but also implicit patterns, assumptions and omissions of a text; and framing also touches on how realities and news frames are constructed. Other than numbers, what seems to be differences of textual analysis and framing perspectives in terms of reading text?

5. What are the differences of thematic analysis, critical discourse analysis, ideological analysis, genre analysis, and cultural analysis in terms of interpretative strategies? More practically when it comes to doing research, which research question or topics are most appropriate for each analysis?

Week 7: October 12 – Design, Process, Evidence & Analysis

1. When I conducted a focus group interview, I was wondering what is the best way of moderating the interview. I sometimes felt myself talking too much about the topic and interrupted participants; and I was worried about how my behaviors affect what participants want to talk and behave during the interview, which may affect the results of the study. What’s appropriate role of the researchers in terms of their moderating role?

2. I’m not familiar with retrospective studies and (from my understanding,) I haven’t seen that kind of studies. What seems to be examples of retrospective studies and what could be appropriate topics for retrospective studies?

3. What are the differences between qualitative research and quantitative research in conducting longitudinal studies? In quantitative research, longitudinal studies are conducted mainly to demonstrate causality between variables. What seems to be the cases for longitudinal studies in qualitative research and what is that for?

4. Regarding generalization, it has been stated that “whether generalization should be permissible or not within the qualitative approach is a debate that will not likely be resolved given the strongly held beliefs of the scholars on each side. So it is best to accept the range of beliefs. However, once a scholar establishes his or her position, we as readers can check to make sure that their beliefs as reflected in their design support the level of generalization in their research” (Potter, p. 133), which seems interesting to me. A major issue concerning generalization is sampling. Different from quantitative research, qualitative research’s sampling is rather purposive or convenient as for access issue, instead of random sampling or national sample. Then what seems to be ways of generalization in qualitative research other than representative sampling?

5. What are the differences of semiotics/semiology and discourse analysis? It seems to me that they are closely related each other in that the social and ideological dimensions of language can be the concept of connotation, which is a second-order signifying system, uses the denoted sign and attaches another meaning to it. What seems to be each case’s research topics/questions in communication research respectively? How they differently applied to communication research?

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