Discussion: Formulating a Qualitative Research Study NURS 8200

NURS 8200 Discussion: Formulating a Qualitative Research Study

Discussion: Formulating a Qualitative Research Study NURS 8200

Qualitative researchers are interested in knowing how people understand and experience their world at a particular point and time and in a particular context (Merriam & Grenier, 2019). The qualitative approach contrasts with a quantitative approach because the researcher identifies the factors ahead of time and then seeks to measure the prevalence and strength of each factor (Merriam & Grenier, 2019). Qualitative questions are open-ended and easy to understand.  For this weeks’ discussion we are asked to select a qualitative research topic and question and identify a methodology for gathering data about the question.

Qualitative Research Topic and Research Question

The research topic I selected is asthma and the effects of COVID-19. My question is Do placing a patient with asthma and COVID-19 in the prone position assist in increasing the 02 saturation? 
This clinical situation occured in one of my patients recently. My patient was on a High-Flow 02 delivery system, at one point on a 100% non-rebreather mask and her sats would dip to the 70s. Interviews and focus-groups are the most common methods of data collection used in qualitative healthcare research ( Gill et al., 2008). My selected methodology therefore would be focus-groups because it is used for generating information on collective views, and the meanings that lie behind those views (Gills et al., 2008). I chose this method because I can gather feedback from the group and also give feedback to the participants. With focus-groups you would want to interact with the group and make sure you have an appropriate group size, Stewart & Shamdasani (1990), suggest that it is better to slightly over-recruit for a focus-group and potentially manage a slightly larger group, than under-recruit and risk having to cancel the session or have an unsatisfactory discussion. This method would help me answer the question of prone positioning because members in the focus-group can discuss the success that they have had with similar patients.

Challenges to Research Projects

Forming the research question is one of the initial challenges that researchers encounter in the early stages of a research project (Khankeh et al., 2015). Other challenges can include selecting the research method and research design, selecting participants, selecting the proper data selection tool, lacking knowledge to conduct research, grant proposal and funding are also challenges to consider. Ethics is important when conducting research because the participants should feel that they are respected and that their responses will be protected from any conflict of interest, and that confidentiality and data protection are in effect. Beneficence and non-maleficence, justice, informed consent, respect for persons, and integrity are important as well. Having completed the CITI requirement for this class, I learned about the ethical side of research. Research ethics govern the standards of conduct for scientific researchers, and all research involving human beings should be reviewed by an ethics committee to ensure that the appropriate ethical standards are being upheld (WHO, 2016).

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Strength and Weaknesses of Selected Method

My selected method is to use a focus-group to answer the question of prone positioning in a patient with asthma and COVID-19. Focus groups functions with the help of a skilled moderator, the weakness with this method is there could be bias from the moderator. A

Discussion Formulating a Qualitative Research Study NURS 8200
Discussion Formulating a Qualitative Research Study NURS 8200

focus-group can be easier to conduct during these days of social distancing because the meetings can be held via Zoom and the participants may be more comfortable to answer questions in their own environment instead of a stuffy boardroom. Focus groups can confirm insights obtained from other methodologies. Focus groups provide a unique way to develop information because the answers typically build on top of one another (Miller, 2020). Weaknesses to the focus group method is that there is no guarantee that people will participate in a focus group, some people may not be engaged in focus groups, security concerns can alter the quality of the data collected, focus groups are more expensive to execute compared to questionnaires, and some focus group members may want to dominate the conversation because of their personalities (Miller, 2020). The phenomenology method was used to obtain data for the relationship between prone positioning and asthma and COVID-19 because it aims to describe, understand and interpret the meanings of experiences of human life (Bloor & Wood, 2006). Grounded theory could be used because it is appropriate when little is known about an phenomenon and the aim is to produce or construct an explanatory theory that uncovers a process inherent to the substansive area of inquiry (Tie et al., 2019).


Bloor, M., & Wood, F. (2006). Phenomenological Methods. Sage research methods.

Gill, P., Stewart, K., & Chadwick, J.B. (2008). Methods of data collection in qualitative research: interviews and focus groups. British Dental Journal, 204, 291-295 (2008).

Khankeh, H., Ranjibar, M., Khorasani-Zavareh, D., Zargham-Boroujeni, A., & Hohansson, E. (2015). Challenges in conducting qualitative research in health: A conceptual paper. Iranian Journal of Nursing and Midwifery Research, 2015 Nov-Dec; 20(6): 635-641. doi: 10.4103/1735-9066.170010

Merriam, S.B., & Grenier, R.S. (2019). Qualitative Research in Practice: Examples for Discussion and Analysis. John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated, 2019. ProQuest EbookCentral, docID=5630257

Miller, B. (2020). 17 Advantages and Disadvantages of a Focus Group. March 2, 2020. GreenGarage.

Stewart, D.W., & Shamdasani, P.M. (1990). Focus groups. Theory and practice. London Sage Publications, 1990

Tie, Y.C., Birks, M., Francis, K. (2019). Grounded theory research: A design framework for novice researchers. Sage Open Medicine. Jan 2. 2019. doi: 10.1177/20503121118822927

World Health Organization (WHO). (2016). Ensuring ethical standards and procedures for research with human beings. International Ethical Guidelines for Biomedical Research Involving Human Subjects 2016.