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Qualitative Longitudinal Methods

Qualitative Longitudinal Methods
Researching Implementation and Change

December 2018 | 120 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Mary Lynne Derrington’s Qualitative Longitudinal Methods: Researching Implementation and Change addresses the use of the qualitative longitudinal methods, their unique methodological features, and the challenges and benefits to this approach. This short supplemental text uses examples of published studies, and the author’s own stories and examples, to show application of the concepts. A chapter on how to prepare a manuscript for publication concentrates on the distinctive aspects of publishing longitudinal studies. The book will be useful to those researching change and its impact on organizations and individuals resulting from the implementation of programs and policies.
Why I Wrote the Book  
Organization of the Book  
The Impact of Change  
Chapter 1: The Benefits and Challenges of Longitudinal Qualitative Studies
Describing Longitudinal Research  
Qualitative Basics: A Review  
Longitudinality: Contribution to Qualitative Methodology  
The Value of Qualitative Longitudinal Studies  
Many Studies Resulting from One Data Set  
The Impact of Change  
The Challenges of Qualitative Longitudinal Studies  
Participant Attrition  
The Issue of Time  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 2: Designing Qualitative Longitudinal Studies
Design Basics in Qualitative Research  
Expansion of the Basic Design  
Research Protocols  
Theoretical Change Frameworks  
Literature Review  
Anticipation of Ethical Issues  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 3: Building on Qualitative Research with a Longitudinal Design
Historical Studies  
Trend Studies  
Grounded Theory  
Case Studies  
Combined Methodologies  
Chapter 4: Perspectives on the Two-Way Research Relationship
Balancing Personal and Professional Relationships with Participants  
Giving Back to Participants  
Giving Appropriate Tokens of Appreciation  
Communicating and Sharing Research Results  
Allowing Participants to be Heard  
Appreciation of Participants' Time  
Understand the Context and Topic  
Perceptions of Risks and Benefits to Participants  
Ethical Considerations and Dilemmas  
Exiting the Study  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 5: Management of Longitudinal State Throughout a Study
Keeping Coding Timely and On-Going  
Managing Longitudinal Interview Data  
Labeling Data  
Effective Organization  
Learning NVivo: Lessons by a Beginner, for a Beginner  
A Useful Learning and Teaching Resource  
Interview on Managing, Coding, and Analyzing Data  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 6: Longitudinal Data Analysis
Approaches to Data Analysis  
Theming with a Longitudinal Perspective  
Questions Framing Change  
Theoretical Triangulation  
Multiple Views  
Multiple Analysts Collaboration  
Visual Representations  
Concept Maps  
Word Clouds  
Project Maps  
Hierarchy Charts  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 7: Preparing a Longitudinal Study for Publication
Digging Deeply for Meaning  
Writing Manuscripts Incorporating Longitudinality  
Presenting Findings: Describing Change  
Writing the Report: Finding One's Voice and Audience  
What We Look For  
Conveying Change and Longitudinality  
Trustworthiness of Researcher's Interpretation Over Time  
Writing the Longitudinal Manuscript  
A Resource  
Chapter Summary  
Chapter 8: Conclusion: Legacies, Lessons and Change
Leaving a Legacy  
Learning from a Diary of Lessons  
Checklist of Lessons  
Future Possibilities  
Chapter Summary  

“Dr. Derrington covers an area that's often hard to cover, and she does it succinctly and clearly and rigorously. That's what we need in qualitative research endeavors. Instead of spending time apologizing that our methods are not quantitative, spend more time explaining what is we do as qualitative researchers. Derrington communicates it well!”

Tim Atkinson
University of Central Arkansas

“The material presented in the book provides information to qualitative researchers interested in conducting longitudinal studies. The information helps researchers build on their qualitative research skills.”

Lydia Kyei-Blankson
Illinois State University

“This book explores the intricacies of longitudinal qualitative research. It shares many of the pragmatic concerns centered in this research method. The author provides numerous examples to make this text come alive and provide models for researchers.”

Diane Barone
University of Nevada, Reno

“Mary Lynne Derrington provides clarity of purpose and intent about longitudinal research methods and approaches in a way that supports examining change over time. This is a book that I will use and recommend to others.”

Sally J. Zepeda
University of Georgia
Key features


  • Excerpts from published studies illustrate application and show how to apply concepts
  • The accessible writing style makes topics easy to read, understand, and apply
  • Chapter opening objectives and end of chapter summaries offer organization to assist readers’ focus
  • The author's personal stories and examples make it easy to relate to the book contents
  • Tips on how to prepare a manuscript for publication provide critical tools to researchers

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ISBN: 9781506395791