Volume 5, No. 3, Art. 31 – September 2004

Conference Report:

Leo Gürtler & Silke-Birgitta Gahleitner

Fourth Annual Meeting of Qualitative Psychology. "Areas of Qualitative Psychology—Special Focus on Design". Blaubeuren, Germany, October 22 – 24, 2003, organized by Mechthild Kiegelmann, Leo Gürtler, and Günter L. Huber (Center for Qualitative Psychology, Tübingen, Germany)

Abstract: This report note reviews the fourth annual meeting of Qualitative Psychology in Blaubeuren (near Ulm, Germany) Oct., 22-24, 2003. Organized by the Center for Qualitative Psychology (Tübingen, Germany). The question of Research Design was chosen as the central topic of the conference. Researchers from different professions took part. The range of experience of the participants was very heterogeneous: Beginning with young researchers, different levels of expertise were represented (up to and including very experienced scholars and researchers). Participants also came from different countries. The main work was done in small working groups. In these groups each study and its outcome(s) was critically discussed and remarked upon. Plenum lectures were also held, in which selected experts presented their thoughts on the central topic—research design. The following report gives a brief summary of each study presented. An attempt is also undertaken to evaluate the findings and the workshop as a whole in the context of the development of qualitative research in psychology.

Key words: qualitative methodology, qualitative psychology, research design, methodology, qualitative research, psychology, networking, mixed methods

Table of Contents

1. Overview

2. Design in Qualitative Psychology: Differential Approaches, Entries, and Accesses

3. The Working Groups

3.1 Group 1

3.2 Group 2

3.3 Group 3

3.4 Group 4

3.5 Group 5

3.6 Group 6

4. Discussion

5. Future Perspectives

Appendix: The Conference Timetable





1. Overview

The Center for Qualitative Psychology (CQP) organizes an annual meeting on the subject of qualitative psychology for young as well as established researchers. The timetable is mostly fixed and is given in GÜRTLER (2003). The aims and mission statement of the CQP are published on their website (http://www.qualitative-psychologie.de/) and also available in KIEGELMANN, HELD, ERTEL, and HUBER (2000). For the conference timetable and the composition of the working groups, see Appendix A below. Changes in the timetable in comparison to last year were due to the working groups having more time for discussion and for developing much more detailed dialogues about their issues. Since time was limited, this meant that the roundtables that were to have been held on Sunday morning had to be canceled. [1]

This report will briefly summarize the various topics that were presented. This year's conference focused on the design of qualitative research, in particular, and the design of research, in general. All contributions were based on participants' thoughts and arguments about the decisions they made in regard to the designs of their studies. These decisions were made for personal reasons, for reasons related to the research questions, or were restricted by the circumstances of their fields of research. To demonstrate design structures developed by experts, three plenum presentations and discussions were held at the beginning, in the middle and at the end of the conference. These sessions were organized by experts in order to foster an understanding of professional decision making in the process of designing qualitative psychological research. The following experts were in charge: (a) Jarg BERGOLD, (b) Günter L. HUBER and Mechthild KIEGELMANN, and (c) Thomas BURKART, Gerhard KLEINING, and Harald WITT. [2]

Working groups in which participants were given the opportunity to present their work and to discuss critical questions as well as getting appropriate feedback were held between these sessions. This report will give a short review of each participant's demonstration. The three plenum discussions and their initiators will be presented in a brief critical summary. These three discussions shifted the focus to different fields of interest. Jarg BERGOLD opened with some fundamental thoughts about professional decision making, supported by a review of the literature. KIEGELMANN and HUBER concentrated mainly on promoting discussion between the conference members and emphasized the need to use a circular approach to optimize the research. KLEINING, BURKART and WITT focused attention on a theory of feeling (BURKART)—including criticism of the development and basic assumptions of that theory (WITT). Finally, KLEINING explored and illustrated his method of a qualitative-heuristic approach to theory building. [3]

2. Design in Qualitative Psychology: Differential Approaches, Entries, and Accesses

BERGOLD ("Community Psychology, Qualitative Research Designs, and Decision Making") gave an introductory presentation on qualitative research in community psychology (see also BERGOLD 2003). In qualitative research, in contrast to quantitative research, it is not possible to determine a fixed design in advance. However, it is advisable to consider typical problems that may arise in advance. BERGOLD began by noting the basic characteristics of community psychology; which claims to be holistic and multi-perspectivist, to view individuals as embedded in their respective contexts and environments, to be true to life and every-day happenings and to stimulate empowerment processes for and with the participation of its research participants. Thus, "gaining access to the field" is particularly important to work out the purpose of the study in question. In BERGOLD's view, research is always simultaneously an intervention, and people may therefore understandably react defensively to it. Thus, the issue is, to quote DENZIN (1989, p.48): "How to capture the phenomenon?" Here the search for suitable stakeholders is of major importance, likewise the careful selection of certain research strategies for sampling, data collection, and analysis. These strategies are used to incorporate research participants, e.g. participative strategies. In the optimal strategy the researcher passes through a cycle from foreign applicant to newcomer, then to being a trainee, coworker and arriving finally as a source of information and advisor. However, in order to be able to advance through this cycle in an optimal manner, researchers must constantly remain self-reflective in their dealings with the respective contexts. In fact, the research relationship is not symmetrical. It is thus always important to include the research participants' subjective views by means of dialogue and to use them to contextualize the results. However, it cannot be taken for granted that the research will offer something to the social system. In sum, BERGOLD concluded that we need more studies like "The Jobless of Marienthal" (JAHODA, LAZARS-FELD & ZEISEL, 1975), i.e. complex, involved, and empowerment-oriented research. A lively discussion ensued among the conference participants. [4]

HUBER and KIEGELMANN ("Design in Qualitative Psychology") emphasized the circular nature and non-linearity of the whole research process. Dividing the research process into three main parts leads to the following process elements: (1) exploration, (2) explication, and (3) application. Further possibilities to differentiate the various research phases into further components are important aspects of adapting the research design to the actual surroundings and conditions. Non-linearity describes an experience every researcher herself or himself is confronted with from time to time: i.e., some change occurs during the research which affects the (whole) design in some way or the other. As a consequence, research activities have to be adjusted, repeated, or altered. Another aspect of non-linearity points to the change an initial research question undergoes by integrating various perspectives in the midst of planning, explicating, and formulating hypotheses. [5]

Interestingly, this process model claims not only to describe the qualitative design, but also quantitative approaches (maybe with some restrictions at selected steps). Both authors explained that multiple qualitative decisions have to be made as quantitative research is designed. A more extreme provocation would subsume the quantitative model as a subsection of the qualitative one. HUBER and KIEGELMANN closed their short overview of design in qualitative psychology by opening up the discussion for the plenum. [6]

KLEINING, BURKART and WITT addressed the question of "How to Develop Theory from Data Toward a Theory of Feeling." The presentation had three parts: (1) the qualitative-heuristic approach to theory, by Gerhard KLEINING; (2) towards a theory of feeling, as an example of theory development, by Thomas BURKART; (3) evaluation of the approach—a comparison of methodologies, by Harald WITT. [7]

KLEINING ("The Qualitative-Heuristic Approach to Theory"; see also KLEINING & WITT 2000) emphasized that theory development within the qualitative-heuristic methodology is a dialectic process. KLEINING's procedure always begins with the collection of data, not with a hypothesis about possible results. The researcher should be as open as possible to approaches other than the ones considered to be most plausible at the outset. The data also should be most varied and most different from each other (Rule 3 on maximal structural variation of perspectives) to find out the similarities within the differences (Rule 4 on analysis toward similarities). This procedure shows the structure of the data or reveals a pattern and will gradually produce a theory, a concept abstracted from a wide range of data and reflecting it. However, in KLEINING's view, the theory is only valid within the range of the data used for its construction. There are no universal theories in the human sciences because all human relations are social and in a process of change. However, they may be valid for a certain societal, temporal and spatial situation. [8]

BURKART ("Towards a Theory of Feeling") demonstrated this process in an ongoing qualitative-heuristic study on emotional experience. BURKART pointed out that the research was comprised of a study on the experience of actual feelings in everyday life, carried out using the method of group-based dialogic introspection. It contained a qualitative exploration of descriptions of feelings by psychotherapeutic patients. It also included a content-analysis of characteristic terms and expressions of feeling, gathered in everyday life and in dictionaries. Personal introspection data—detailed notes taken shortly after the self-observation of a process of feelings—were also included. BURKART reported that the results demonstrated feeling as an integral system of body-related evaluation, motivation and communication. Feelings reflect the situation of the person integrally in relation to current expectations, goals and needs. BURKART cited DAMASIO's (1994) theory of somatic markers to explicate the role of body sensations as a source of emotions and actions. In BURKART's view, feelings motivate actions by changing the person's bodily and mental state, by preparing action or by eliciting impulses to act. Thus, feelings also have a communicative function. The evaluative, motivational, and communicative functions of feeling should be realized by a more or less intense transformation of experience of self and world. [9]

WITT ("Evaluation of the Approach—A Comparison of Methodologies") analyzed theory building in emotional psychology and compared it with the qualitative-heuristic approach. He began by questioning BURKART's theory of feeling. As a starting point, common knowledge and results about emotions and feelings were used to formulate questions to establish if BURKART's theory was capable of explaining and forecasting the "hard facts." Major points of his argumentation included pointing out the very spontaneous nature of emotions, the different causes that can evoke the same emotion and the opposite case of the arousal of varying emotions as a consequence of the same situation. He explicated further points of discussion, which included a description the characteristics of emotions (quality, intensity), the appropriateness of the fit of situation and feelings and (cognitive) appraisals. In evaluating BURKART's theory, WITT remarked that this approach represented a dynamic dialogical understanding of an ongoing flow of emotions which stands as a contrast to many well-known static oriented theoretical approaches. Some points (e.g. the spontaneous nature) can not be explained satisfactorily by BURKART's approach, but as WITT stated, "that does not blame the theory, because it is a most difficult problem and I did not find a single theory which can explain this fact satisfyingly." Other questions WITT asked can be answered fully by BURKART's approach. (e.g. a continuous adaptation process adjusts and coordinates the relationship of situation and emotion to reach the cited fit between them). [10]

3. The Working Groups

3.1 Group 1

KIRMAYER ("Internet in the Training of Craftsman in Vocational Schools") discussed his dissertation project about the needs and wants that have developed as a result of increased use of the Internet in general. His original thesis was that certainty-oriented (HUBER & ROTH 2000) teachers as well as students find it much more difficult to learn to use the Internet in their daily work than uncertainty-oriented teachers/ students. Some of the results do not seem to support this view completely and need to be viewed within their respective contexts if they are to be properly understood. [11]

WATZLAWICK ("Experiencing Sexual Orientation") talked about an online-survey on adolescents' development towards awareness of their sexual orientation. The Internet as a tool offers much wider opportunities for doing research on taboos such as homosexuality and bisexuality than studies in the classroom. However, samples of Internet surveys are mostly self-selected which results in bias and a concomitant lack of knowledge about distributions of characteristics in the population as a whole. Additionally, the requirement of having access to the Internet (or not) restricts samples even further. Data were analyzed by various methods. One noteworthy result on the awareness of personal sexual identity indicates that the main concerns for heterosexual adolescents are their first love(s) and the longing for physical closeness, whereas homosexual and bisexual adolescents more often have to deal with doubts and worries. They also tend to remember feelings such as panic, desperation, and ambiguity. The results reveal the importance of providing information about sexual orientation as early as it is appropriate to these adolescents to ensure that their awakening sexuality is not a cause of anxiety or worry. [12]

3.2 Group 2

HUBER ("Qualitative Analysis "cis transcriptionae": Direct Processing of Sound and Video Data") showed new opportunities in computer-assisted qualitative analysis with AQUAD 6 (http://www.aquad.de/). The main innovative feature of the new AQUAD 6 version is its ability to process audio-visual data directly without requiring them to be transcribed onto paper. Apart from the fact that transcription is a time consuming process, it also usually costs money and cannot always be done by the researcher himself. He therefore needs to be able to read the transcript to be able to work on it. Now, with direct analysis data can be listened to or watched in their original form (if they are in the right computer compatible format), and memos can also be added for each sequence, and critical incidents can be transcribed if necessary. HUBER listed the prerequisites for this analysis: .mp3 audio- or .avi video format, which is compressed and usually fits onto a conventional CD-ROM. To complete his presentation, HUBER gave a brief introduction to audio-video based work with AQUAD 6, via beamer. [13]

GÜRTLER ("Qualitative Video Analysis: Design of a Study on the Function of Humor in Teaching Discourses on Mindfulness") emphasized the benefit of understanding the substance of who or what we are investigating when designing qualitative research. GÜRTLER's research topic was teaching discourses of a ten day Vipassana-meditation retreat (http://www.dhamma.org/). Theoretical issues are explained by discourses. These are video-based and therefore highly standardized in each center worldwide. They were video-analyzed with AQUAD 6. His research question focused on the role of humor in these discourses. He argued that the humor can only be understood if the researcher knows the content of the discourses and the special demands of each day. GÜRTLER hypothesized that the best way to understand the function of humor was to analyze the seminar itself. If the process (demands of each day, difficulties, and curriculum) is understood, a comparison of how humor was used on each day would illustrate the ways humor fit into the unique characteristics of each day. Students learned different things on different days, and the humor—according to his thesis—reflected the content that was being taught. Without knowledge of this process and relationship a researcher cannot reconstruct humor or its constructive potential correctly. [14]

3.3 Group 3

SOINI and FLYNN ("The Importance of Emotion and Rhythm for Learning") emphasized the living nature of research subjects—in this case: students. Citing Whitehead (1929) they pointed out that students have to be involved with the subjects they study. If this is not understood and taken into account, then education is reduced to "inert knowledge." If, however, it is taken into consideration, students become highly personally engaged in their learning. Both researchers presented results from longitudinal studies during which they had asked students to describe the situations in which they "really learned something." These situations occur when students can identify with or relate to the subject being taught; for example, if a subject shares an element which has some importance in the students' personal lives. The emotional experiences that result are also variable. Further critical characteristics of important learning situations were: time to reflect, the opportunity to consider and explore the ideas of others, and the opportunity for students to obtain feedback from professionals or experts working in their area of interest. SOINI and FLYNN explored these findings based on the assumption that learning has a rhythm and evolves in cycles. [15]

DOMÍNGUEZ and MEDINA ("Qualitative Research in Intercultural Processes in the Fields of Geography and History in Secondary Education") examined the traditional disciplines of geography and history in secondary education in Spain. Here, a combination of questionnaire survey, dialogue-based group work, task analysis, and self-criticism were utilized. The underlying goal was to assess the relevance of several aspects of professionalization for professional teacher training. These aspects are mostly related to the self: self-development, personal (professional) identity, emotions, and knowledge (inter-cultural, multi-disciplinary). These aspects came as a result of doing research on teachers. They can be seen as key qualifications, and should help teachers to improve and apply their knowledge in classes The results of discussion groups comprised of people from five separate regions in Spain were explored. [16]

GENTO ("The Axiological Bases of a New Curriculum Design") presented a model that arose from the idea of developing a framework of reference to evaluate institutional quality. Multiple contacts with teachers, headmasters, parents, and other professionals shaped the initial idea and supported a development towards a more realistic approach to evaluation. The methodological design includes both quantitative and qualitative elements. The qualitative part helps to formulate hypotheses for comparing and contrasting the elements of educational institutions' quality empirically. Contacts with experts and professionals were helpful in critically analyzing the proposal. The quantitative analysis used a questionnaire that was given to 3500 people (teachers, students, parents, school heads) from different countries. An important perspective derived from the critical focus of the study on transformation rather than elimination of current educational institutions. GENTO ended his research report with a list of values to be promoted by education. [17]

3.4 Group 4

HUBER ("Qualitative Methods in Evaluation") discussed evaluation from a qualitative point of view. Here, the outcome of evaluation is understood not only as a final (brief) summary which distinguishes between "good" and "bad," but rather as the monitoring of processes "on-the-fly." Process outcomes are also included in this evaluation procedure. Qualitative methods provide an opportunity to come into contact with participants and with the subjects to be evaluated. The qualitative pool provides many possibilities to do justice to the subject under evaluation. Consequently, the goal of evaluation can be not only to "evaluate," but to intervene as soon as possible to prevent failures. [18]

MAYRING ("Basic Procedures of Qualitative [and Quantitative] Research") also provided some new insights into the possibilities of research design by presenting another view. He attempted to differentiate six basic procedures of research which he designated: description, exploration, comparison, causal analysis, intervention/application, and study comparison (meta-analysis). To explain this structure, he related it to the classical qualitative research designs: single case analysis, ethnography, field research, action research, and qualitative evaluation. In regard to "mixed methods," MAYRING also reviewed classical quantitative methods and research procedures: the experiment, survey studies, the correlational studies, and quantitative evaluation. Finally, in this huge amalgam of research techniques, integrative as well as excluding factors and influences of designing proper studies were discussed (see also for a short overview MAYRING 2001). [19]

3.5 Group 5

NENTWICH ("Researching Gender and Not Essentializing Sex: An Example for a Research Design") emphasized that the challenge in research about gender is not to define the categories one wants to investigate before investigating them. Research about the social construction of gender needs to address the question as to how research can be designed to focus on social processes (gender) and not on the essentialized products of construction (sex). NENTWICH therefore presented some basic implications of a social constructionist perspective and showed how she attempted to avoid essentializing sex in a study on the social construction of gender and gender equality. NENTWICH used West and Zimmerman's (1987) concept of doing gender, i.e. she referred to the use of language and how accounts are used in an argument instead of focusing on practices in general. In the analysis of her data NENTWICH examined how the overall question as to how gender, work, family, leadership and the dichotomies between men and women, work and family, subject and organizations are constructed. [20]

GAHLEITNER ("Between Difference and Deconstruction: The Significance of the Open Qualitative Research Process for Gender Research") demonstrated the significance of the open qualitative research process for gender research by presenting a study on gender-sensitive therapy and counseling. Following NENTWICH's insight that in research on the gender-"typical" aspects of a phenomenon we are in danger of reproducing gender duality, GAHLEITNER used a research design in which the data are recoded by two additional coders to call the gender-"typical" perspective into question. She employed HAGEMANN-WHITE's (1993; 1994) procedure in combination with MAYRING's (2000) qualitative content analysis to achieve a gender sensitive content analysis of her data. Carol HAGEMANN-WHITE (1994, pp.301ff.) describes this procedure as a "systematic search for utterances that fall within the category of gender relevance." Presenting the results for two interviewees as an example, GAHLEITNER drew attention to the fact that therapeutic interventions aimed at helping men and women to come to terms with sexual abuse should be oriented towards gender-specific solutions. To be "successful," interventions may need to be directed at the coping strategies which are atypical for the client's sex and which have thus previously been less actively employed. [21]

BISCHKOPF ("The Application of a Grounded Theory-Based Research Design for Analyzing Caregiver Burden: How to Increase the Specificity of Concepts") drew attention to the area of conflict between specificity and abstraction in grounded theory. To demonstrate the relevance and implications of this question, the discussion was based on a research design used to analyze caregiver burden and coping strategies among depressed patients' spouses. As might be expected, one possible solution lays between the two poles, i.e. in a compromise enhanced by the application of thought experiments (by researchers in a different social context) and dialectical investigation of the phenomenon. On the other hand, this also means integrating quantitative and qualitative methodologies to achieve a good fit between specificity and generalization and between grounding and the application of pre-existing conceptual and theoretical frameworks. [22]

3.6 Group 6

ULLRICH ("Living with People with Disabilities: Perspectives of L'Arche Assistants") has continued her work on people with disabilities in a community in Australia called L'Arche. This time her interest was in establishing the views of assistants working there and the personal transformation they experienced (mostly on a spiritual level) as a result of their work with the disabled. This ranged from the motives and intentions to the actual experiences of assistants. As was to be expected, social interaction and personal relationships appeared to be important issues. Interestingly, this research was focused not only on well-being, but also on spiritual aspects. Well-being pointed to the integration of people with disabilities and how they can cope with life within the community. But assistants'—as the helping people are called there—well-being has to be taken into account as well. The term spirituality referred to the bases of the community of L'Arche. The philosophy of L'Arche emphasizes a system of beliefs about the value of persons with disabilities, the importance of relationships, and a sense of community. [23]

JESCHKE ("Addressing Self-Determination and Sexual Violence in Residential Institutions for Mentally Handicapped Young People") explored research on the process of dealing with sexual self-determination and sexualized violence of young people with mental disabilities in residential institutions. On the methodological side, her paper introduced an adaptation of "Global analysis," a method of analysis developed by BÖHM, LEGEWIE and MUHR (1992) for gaining access to the field on a superficial, but topical level which she found highly suitable for the exploratory nature of the theme. The long-term goal is the development of a handbook for self-help for people with mental disabilities as well as for the staff working with them. The underlying model of assessment was also greatly influenced by and adapted from the ecological model of BRONFENBRENNER (1979). [24]

MASLO and STRODS ("Code System Building for Qualitative Data Analysis for Pupils' Social-Cultural Learning Experiences: Research in an Open School Project in Latvia") contributed a study on innovative projects in Latvian education. The main focus of this "open school" project is on the socio-cultural experiences of students and their classroom organizations and learning contexts. A combination of quantitative and qualitative methodologies was used to evaluate these contexts. The aim was to conduct a longitudinal study in which data were collected to compare the characteristics of Latvian schools with those of schools in other European countries. MASLO and STRODS also emphasized that self-evaluation by the schools is an important tool to foster the development there. Then, autonomy can be developed from the start of these long lasting changes. [25]

4. Discussion

Two noteworthy points were raised at this workshop. The first point concerns the application of so called "mixed methods." One might think that the use of mixed methodology was influenced by the "Zeitgeist"; i.e. that it is compatible with the mainstream of a given social or professional context. It can be questioned whether mixed methodologies are in fact used or not. To judge by the various studies reviewed this is not the case. Many researchers (e.g. BISCHKOPF, WATZLAWICK, DOMÍNGUEZ and MEDINA, see also MAYRING's overview) emphasized the important role of this "new" paradigm in social research. Moreover, it would seem short-sighted to evaluate research on the basis of knowledge about the instruments used alone. Rather, it is our view that the use of methods depends on the research question and not vice versa—although one might find oneself investigating issues for which no suitable methodological instruments or data analysis procedures yet exist. But this is another matter. [26]

A second point of interest addressed was the field of sexual identity, sexual violence and abuse, especially in the context of disadvantaged groups and minorities (see, for example, GAHLEITNER, JESCHKE, and WATZLAWICK). These important issues also still seem to be taboo and an unresolved problem in our society (and perhaps also in some areas of social research). This taboo could be viewed as being still as important as the confrontation with death and dying that were the root topics of the grounded theory approach. Thus it is even more important that these issues should gradually rise to the surface in research to allow the development of a large knowledge base on which professionals working in various fields of applied psychology and social work can draw. Gender research is also confronted with a specific methodological problem: if we focus too strongly on the duality of gender we risk reifying the binary system and thus contributing to its construction. The question as to what research methods can be used to deconstruct and reconstruct gender roles in a suitable design has not yet been adequately resolved. This remains a task for future research on gender-specific topics to solve. [27]

To return to the subject of design in social research, the different approaches presented brought to our awareness how different individual fields and subjects of research are and also how difficult it is to realize the principles of qualitative research in a manner that both fits the issue under investigation and is process-oriented, while at all times remaining open for revisions and corrections. Doing qualitative research in community psychology is fundamentally different from doing it in the fields of education, or the psychology of gender. All researchers need to consider in the initial stages of their research what type of insight they are hoping to achieve, what basic conditions they will be confronted with in their chosen field and how they can or must proceed in order to meet the criteria as best they can. They should also need to remember the importance of ethical issues when selecting research questions (cf. GÜRTLER 2003; GAHLEITNER 2002, 2003). It seems that the variance within the approaches of different schools is sometimes bigger than the variance between them. Coming back to the question of methodology and epistemology, the differences in the various fields of qualitative research are a rich source which can be exploited to foster the development of the field as a whole. And that is good. Otherwise, the discussion would lose its effect and the evolution would come to a halt. But this is true not only for structural questions such as preparing a design or using various kinds of methods. As can be seen from the discussion on ethics above, it is more important in relation to issues that have great impact not only on the small sections of society—scientists, even psychologists—but on people's lives in general. Taboos such as sexual abuse, sexuality in general, or death and dying, are only taboos as long as people fear the confrontation with that part of our reality. And we believe that these are fields in which qualitative research can contribute, not only to academic wisdom and achievement, but also, and more importantly, to the enhancement of life itself. [28]

5. Future Perspectives

The issue of mixed methods will be the central theme of the next workshop in 2004. The conference will be held in Freudenstadt, Germany (in the Black Forest) from October 22-24, 2004. As a special and unique happening, the workshop will be held in conjunction with the Special Interest Group Number 17 (SIG #17) of the European Association for Research in Learning and Instruction (EARLI). As a result of ongoing activities of various members of the Center for Qualitative Psychology together with other international researchers, a SIG entitled "Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches to Learning and Instruction" has been established. The SIG meeting will be held at the same location, from October 21 to October 22, 2004, immediately before the CQP workshop. For practical purposes, there is no separation of these two events according to participants and presentations of researchers. As always, further details are available on the center's website. All researchers are welcome to participate and to share their personal insights into the field of qualitative and quantitative methods in the social sciences. [29]

The CQP will publish a book containing the presentations. This documentation and previous documentations of the workshops of the CQP (2001-2004) are available from: Verlag Ingeborg Huber (Viktor-Renner-Str. 39, D-72074 Tübingen, E-mail: ingeborg.huber@t-online.de). [30]

Appendix: The Conference Timetable





Arrival and welcome session

6:00 pm






9:00-11:00 am


Group 1, Group 2, Group 3

11:00-12:30 am


Group 4, Group 5, Group 6

2:30-4:00 pm


Plenum Saturday

4:15-6:30 pm






9:00-10:30 am


Final Plenum

10:45-12:30 am

Plenum Saturday 9:00-11:00 h

  • Bergold, Jarg: Community Psychology, Qualitative Research Designs, and Decision Making

Group 1 Saturday 11:00-12:30 h

  • Kirmayer, Wolf: Internet in the Training of Craftsman in Vocational Schools

  • Watzlawik, Meike: Experiencing Sexual Orientation—An Internet Survey of Sexual Identity Development among German & American Adolescents

Group 2 Saturday 11:00-12:30 h

  • Huber, Günter L.: Qualitative Analysis "cis transcriptionae": Direct Processing of Sound and Video Data

  • Gürtler, Leo: Qualitative Video Analysis: Design of a Study to Understand the Function of Humor in Teaching Discourses on Mindfulness

Group 3 Saturday 11:00-12:30 h

  • Soini, Hannu & Flynn, Mark: The Importance of Emotion and Rhythm for Learning

  • Medina, Antonio & M. C. Dominguez: Qualitative Research in Intercultural Processes in the Field of Geography and History in Secondary Education

  • Dominguez, M.C. & Medina, Antonio: Qualitative Research in Intercultural Processes in the Field of Geography and History in Secondary Education

  • Gento, Samuel: The axiological bases of a new curriculum design

Group 4 Saturday 14:30-16:00 h

  • Huber, Günter L.: Qualitative Methods in Evaluation

  • Mayring, Philipp: Basic Procedures of Qualitative (and Quantitative) Research

Group 5 Saturday 14:30-16:00 h

  • Nentwich, Julia: Researching Gender and Not Essentializing Sex: An Example for a Research Design

  • Gahleitner, Silke-Birgitta: Between Difference and Deconstruction: the Significance of the Open Qualitative Research Process for Gender Research

  • Bischkopf, Jeannette: The Application of a Grounded Theory-Based Research Design for Analyzing Caregiver Burden: How to Increase the Specificity of Concepts

Group 6 Saturday 14:30-16:00 h

  • Ullrich, Annette: Living with People with Disabilities: Perspectives of L'Arche Assistants

  • Jeschke, Karin: Addressing Self-Determination and Sexual Violence in Residential Institutions for Mentally Handicapped Young People

  • Maslo, Irina & Strods, Gunnar: Codes System Building for Qualitative Data Analysis for Pupils Social-Cultural Learning Experience Research in Latvia Open School Project

Plenum Saturday 16:15-18:30 h

  • Huber, Günter L. & Kiegelmann, Mechthild: Design in Qualitative Psychology

Plenum Sunday 9:00-10:30 h

  • Burkart, Thomas: Towards a Theory of Feeling

  • Kleining, Gerhard: The Qualitative-Heuristic Approach to Theory

  • Witt, Harald: Evaluation of the Approach of Burkart—A Comparison of Methodologies


  • Final Plenum, plans for the future workshop 2004 together with SIG 17 of the EARLI


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Leo GÜRTLER works as a psychologist in the Department of Educational Psychology, School for Education, University of Tübingen. He is a member of the Center for Qualitative Psychology and is currently preparing his doctoral thesis (working title: Mastering the catastrophe: Humor in life, teaching, and education). His research interests are the Research Program Subjective Theories (German: "Forschungsprogramm Subjektive Theorien") and Vipassana-meditation in the tradition of Sayagyi U Ba Khin as taught by S.N. GOENKA. He is in the half way through his training as a family therapist.


Leo Gürtler

Institut für Erziehungswissenschaft
Abteilung Pädagogische Psychologie
Universität Tübingen
Münzgasse 22-30
72070 Tübingen, Germany

E-mail: leo.c.g@web.de


Silke-Birgitta GAHLEITNER wrote her doctoral thesis on gender-specific modes of coping with sexual abuse at the Institute of Clinical Psychology of the Free University Berlin and is currently working as a lecturer at various universities and colleges in Berlin and as a psychotherapist at a residential institution for girls and young women. Her main areas of work are: psycho-social counseling, psychotraumatology and trauma therapy, gender research and qualitative research methods. Her present research project entitled "Gender-sensitive therapy and counseling approaches for the treatment of complex sexual traumatization—An exploratory study focusing on the client perspective" is currently being funded by the Berlin Program for Equal Opportunities for Women in Research and Education.


Silke-Birgitta Gahleitner

Spessartstraße 11
14197 Berlin, Germany

E-mail: silkegahleitner@hotmail.com


Gürtler, Leo & Gahleitner, Silke-Birgitta (2004). Conference Report: Fourth Annual Meeting of Qualitative Psychology. "Areas of Qualitative Psychology—Special Focus on Design" [30 paragraphs]. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung / Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 5(3), Art. 31, http://nbn-resolving.de/urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0403312.

Copyright (c) 2004 Leo Gürtler, Silke-Birgitta Gahleitner

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