Transforming Qualitative Data: Description, Analysis, and Interpretation

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9780803952812: Transforming Qualitative Data: Description, Analysis, and Interpretation

The process of analyzing qualitative data and producing a complete study is discussed in this book. Breaking down the transformation process into description, analysis and interpretation, Harry Wolcott discusses these three related activities. To illustrate them, he critically analyzes his own work, using nine of his previous studies as examples. He concludes by examining how to learn and teach qualitative research using these principles.

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About the Author:

Harry F. Wolcott (Ph.D. Stanford) taught at the University of Oregon, serving on both the faculties of education and anthropology. He authored several ethnographic texts that included his experiences among the Kwakiutl Indians of British Columbia and with the African Beer Gardens of Bulawayo, Rhodesia, as well on ethnographic method and on writing itself, with a focus on qualitative research. His publications included: Transforming Qualitative Data (SAGE 1994); Art of Fieldwork (2nd ed., Altamira Press 2005); Ethnography: A Way of Seeing (2nd ed., Altamira Press 2008); Writing Up Qualitative Research (3rd ed., SAGE 2009); Sneaky Kid and Its Aftermath: Ethics and Intimacy in Fieldwork (Altamira 2002), and Ethnography Lessons: A Primer (Left Coast Press, 2010).

Review:

"Wolcott offers a...cornucopia of advice...Wolcott shares suggestions gleaned from his professional life...there is much that is useful to program evaluators and to students of program evaluation...Wolcott offers an important...supplementary reading to a course on evaluation methods."--Linda Mabry

"This book would be an excellent purchase for those either contemplating a qualitative research project, or who are currently sitting on a pile of data with which they don't know what to do."--Journal of Psychology and Christianity

"This book would be useful reading for researchers at various levels of sophistication and various stages in their careers. As an educator, I found the insights relevant to the teaching of qualitative research in general. As a researcher, I felt engaged by the discussions and found them relevant to research-in-process decisions. I would also recommend this book to researchers at the beginning of their careers who could benefit from reflecting on many of the questions raised."

--Barbara Bowers

"The book offers communication researchers some of the best recent work on qualitative inquiry in the human disciplines. . . . Published by Sage, the leading publisher of qualitative research in the social sciences today. . . . Harry F. Wolcott is a master ethnographer, and for over three decades he has charted an interpretive, postpositivist approach to the anthropology of educational practices. In this collection, which rereads a number of his classic articles, he finally breaks from this tradition and openly embraces a fully post-foundational approach to validity and textual authority. . . . This book should be on the shelf of every qualitative researcher. . . . This work brings the communication scholar up-to-date on where qualitative methods are in current sociological and educational discourse."

--Norman K. Denzin

"When I received Transforming Qualitative Research, I immediately perused the book and was excited and enthusiastic about Wolcott's focus on those aspects of qualitative research that are the most vexing for novices such as doctoral students, as well as experienced individuals. The chapters of the book are so well written and replete with colorful analogies and metaphors that the reader glides through the pages easily and attentively...The final chapters of his new book discussing the teaching of qualitative research and the role of the instructor are extremely valuable. In my opinion, Transforming Qualitative Data will shortly become a classic in our field."--Edith W. King

"Harry F. Wolcott's new book is stunning--a penultimate statement capping a brilliant career. The text weaves between the old and the new, repositioning Wolcott's classic interpretive works, now read against the new postmodern turn in ethnography. A must work for all qualitative scholars."--Norman Denzin

"This is more than a 'how-to book.' Wolcott conceptualizes, contextualizes, and qualifies qualitative research in a way that only a humane, mature, and reflective professional could. Educators, social scientists of all persuasions, and even the 'educated lay person' can benefit from a reading of it."--George Spindler

"Wolcott is one of the most refreshing writers in the behavioral sciences today. With his characteristic light touch and whimsical humor, he transforms Transforming Qualitative Data from a book read because you have to, to one read because you can't put it down. The volume belies the widespread academic belief that a book must be very serious to be taken seriously."--Ronald P. Rohner

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Wolcott, Harry F. (Fletcher)
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Wolcott, Harry F. (Fletcher)
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