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Week 8 Commencement Last week you began exploring qualitative research and the relevant techniques involved. This week we will continue evaluating the quality of qualitative research designs. Once

Week 8 Commencement

Last week you began exploring qualitative research and the relevant techniques involved.  This week we will continue evaluating the quality of qualitative research designs.  Once again, not only the theoretical framework is involved, but also ethical considerations are important to delineate.  Specifically, I want you to think about the well-established ethical principles of beneficence, justice, and autonomy and how this applies to the specific research projects.  In addition to the discussion this week, please note that there is an assignment due as well.  Please consider the following prompts in the discussion post by day 4:

  • Provide a primary post addressing and explaining two criteria for evaluating the quality of qualitative research designs.
  • Explain how these criteria are tied to epistemological and ontological assumptions underlying philosophical orientations and the standards of your discipline.
  • Identify a potential ethical issue in qualitative research and explain how it might influence design decisions.
  • Explain what it means for a research topic to be amenable to scientific study using a qualitative approach.

In addition, I would like to see how this ties in social change. 

Please be sure to support all of your claims with course materials and outside sources.

Qualitative Research Designs, Continued

Traditionally, the constructs of validity and reliability have been tied to the quantitative approach to research inquiry. However, there has been a long running debate among qualitative researchers about whether these constructs are applicable to the qualitative approach (see Chenail, 2010; Merriam, 1995).

For example, some researchers (e.g., see Smith, 1984) have argued that the constructs of validity and reliability should be abandoned in qualitative research because the philosophical assumptions at the core of qualitative and quantitative research are incompatible. Other researchers (e.g., see Maxwell, 1992), however, have identified types of validity that they argue are applicable to qualitative research.

This week, you will have an opportunity to weigh in on the discussion about the criteria for evaluating the quality of qualitative research designs. You will also consider the relationship between quality criteria, philosophical orientations, and discipline standards. You will also consider ethical issues in qualitative research, the implications these issues have on design decisions, and the strategies used to address them. You will also annotate a qualitative journal article on a research topic of your interest.


Chenail, R. (2010). Getting specific about qualitative research generalizability. Journal of Ethnographic & Qualitative Research, 5(1), 1–11. Retrieved from Academic Search Complete.

Maxwell, J. A. (1992). Understanding and validity in qualitative research. Harvard Educational Review, 62(3), 279–299.

Merriam, S. B. (1995). What can I tell you from an N of 1? Issues of validity and reliability in qualitative research. PAACE Journal of Lifelong Learning, 4, 51–60. Retrieved from

Smith, J. K. (1984). The problem of criteria for judging interpretive inquiry. Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 6(4), 379–391.

Learning Objectives

Students will:

·         Explain criteria for evaluating the quality of qualitative research designs

·         Explain relationship between quality criteria and philosophical orientations and discipline standards

·         Identify ethical issues in qualitative research

·         Explain how ethical issues influence design decisions in qualitative research

·         Explain criteria for a research topic to be amenable to scientific study using a quantitative approach

·         Apply strategies for addressing ethical issues in qualitative research

·         Annotate a qualitative research article

·         Apply APA Style to writing

Learning Resources

Required Readings

Golafshani, N. (2003). Understanding reliability and validity in qualitative research. The Qualitative Report, 8(4), 597–606. Retrieved from

Burkholder, G. J., Cox, K. A., & Crawford, L. M. (2016). The scholar-practitioner’s guide to research design. Baltimore, MD: Laureate Publishing.

  • Chapter 7, “Quality Considerations”

Smith, J. K. (1984). The problem of criteria for judging interpretive inquiry. Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 6(4), 379–391.

?The problem of criteria for judging interpretive inquiry by Smith, J. K. in Educational evaluation and policy analysis, 6(4), 379-391. Copyright 1984 by Sage Publications-Journals. Used with permission of Sage Publications-Journals via the Copyright Clearance Center.

Document: Trustworthiness (PDF)

Walden University: Center for Research Quality. (2015b). Research ethics & compliance: Application & general materials. Retrieved from

Download the “Research Ethics Planning Worksheet” document.

Walden University: Center for Research Quality. (2015c). Research resources: Research planning & writing. Retrieved from

Download the “Litmus Test” document.

Walden University. (2015a). How do I find an article that reports on research that uses a specific methodology? Retrieved from

Walden University: Writing Center. (2015). Common course assignments: Annotated bibliographies. Retrieved from

Required Media

Endicott, L. (n.d.). IRB ethics review at Walden [Online tutorial]. Retrieved July 27, 2016, from

Price, S. (2015). Annotated bibliographies [Online webinar]. Retrieved from


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