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Publication - Dr Lucy Wenham

    Rethinking rigour

    Analytic dilemmas of a scientist morphing into a social scientist


    Wenham, LJ, 2019, ‘Rethinking rigour: Analytic dilemmas of a scientist morphing into a social scientist’. in: Bryan Clift, Julie Gore, Sheree Bekker, Ioannis Costas Batlle, Katharina Chudzikowski, Jennifer Hatchard (eds) Myths, Methods, and Messiness: Insights for Qualitative Research Analysis. The University of Bath, Bath, pp. 61-77


    In transitioning from scientist to social scientist - and from teacher to teacher-researcher - and with the lived experiences of marginalised students as my inspiration, I confronted thought provoking issues. Whilst I was drawn to an ethnographic approach, settling on a suitable analytic stance, was messier. I was determined to keep students voices to the fore and have sufficient rigour, reliability and reproducibility. I discuss the rationale for my eventual choice of qualitative analytic approach - drawn from grounded theory techniques - detailing the specific analytic steps, incorporating free writing, initial coding, clustering, memoing, focused coding and diagramming. I make the process transparent and open to critique - providing detail often glossed over. Through the replication of a complete memo, within which I detail how I utilise deeply embedded web-like diagramming even at the early stages of analysis, I illustrate how tentative social processes are recognised. I find this more detailed, augmented process to be suitably rigorous. This augmented process, with early use of deeply embedded diagramming, offers an analytic technique for other researchers also.

    Full details in the University publications repository