Using Computers in Qualitative Research

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SAGE, Apr 30, 1991 - 224 pages
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This is a comprehensive assessment of recent developments in the use of computers in qualitative research, an increasingly important and rapidly growing area of interest among social scientists and graduate students.

Using Computers in Qualitative Research profiles and compares the principal programs available, identifying their particular strengths and limitations. It outlines the sorts of research problems that existing and forthcoming software can and cannot handle. The contributors also draw on their experiences of teaching computer-based techniques to suggest ways in which these could be incorporated into research methods training. [Reprinted with updated information on computer resources, 1992]


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PART ONE Using Computers in Qualitative Research
Automated Tools for Qualitative Research
PART TWO Implications for Research Practice
Personal Information and Qualitative Research
Method and Madness in the Application of Computer
PART THREE Qualitative Knowledge and Computing
a Qualitative Model
The Right Brain Strikes Back

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About the author (1991)

My research interests are in criminology, socio-legal studies, social research methodology, and new technologies for social research. In criminology I have particular expertise in policing, having conducted studies of police training, police occupational culture, community and neighbourhood policing, equal opportunities in the police service, police corruption, and comparative research on international police systems. In socio-legal studies I have particular interests in the criminal courts and the experiences of lay people during the criminal trial process. My study of lay participants' experience of trials of cases of physical violence won the Socio-Legal Studies Association Hart Prize 2007 for the Best Socio-Legal Book In social research methodology my primary expertise is in qualitative methods, particularly the practice and ethics of participant observation, the status of interview data, and software for the analysis of qualitative data, in which latter I co-direct the UK national centre for qualitative software. I also have substantial expertise in multiple-method research and methodological 'triangulation', secondary analysis of archival qualitative data, online research methods, and the application of grid and high performance computing to social research, where I have a particular interest in the use of Access Grid technology for 'virtual fieldwork'. My paper on the latter was shortlisted for the Sage Prize for Innovation and Excellence 2007.

Raymond M. Lee is Reader in Social Research Methods in the Department of Social Policy and Social Science, Royal Holloway University of London. His research interests include research methodology, the sociology of religion and the sociology of labour markets. His specific methodological interests include the problems and issues which surround research on 'sensitive' topics, and the impact of new technologies on the research process. His books on methodology include Doing Research on Sensitive Topics and Dangerous Fieldwork. In addition, he has edited Using Computers in Qualitative Research (with Nigel Fielding), Researching Sensitive Topics (with Claire Renzetti) and Information Technology for the Social Scientist.

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