By Lynn Earnshaw (eds.)
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Extra info for Interviewing: Study Guide
Such activities require large teams and substantial budgets. htm r i g o r o u s means o f p r o d u c i n g explanations o f phenomena (and the m o s t satisfactory basis f o r p r e d i c t i o n s ) . Observations t h a t lack a theoretical u n d e r p i n n i n g c a n n o t p r o v i d e a basis f o r e x p l a n a t i o n or p r e d i c t i o n . • There is n o consensus o n w h a t the precise technical specifications f o r a t h e o r y s h o u l d be a n d o n l y p a r t i a l agreement over w h a t constitutes an adequate e x p l a n a t i o n .
A t the same t i m e , w e are positive. T h e p r o b l e m s are there t o be overcome, a n d a successful survey can c o n t r i b u t e t o understandi n g social life i n the hope o f m a k i n g things better. 24 Surveying the social world Key summary p« * * * * Surveys are a for They involve the They have t o caf They can be con P o i n t s f o r reHeci Further reading Marsh (1982) The Survey Method: The Contribution of Surveys to Sociological Explanation is an excellent account of the survey as a research strategy.
7 lessons Encouraging people to take part in surveys: general • Value of the research W e presumably think that o u r w o r k will be valuable. The m o r e we can convince respondents that this is true, the better. W h e r e v e r possible, we should find ways of feeding the main findings back t o o u r respondents and t o people like them. • Value of respondents contribution W h y should a respondent bother t o answer o u r questions, when they have plenty of other things t o do? W h a t difference will their participation make t o the value of o u r research?