June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
Educational Research and Methods
23.933.1 - 23.933.9
Novice-led paired thematic analysis: A method for conceptual change in engineeringConceptual change research is a major focus of STEM education researchers and fundingagencies. The dominant research methods have evolved over nearly 50 years and rely heavily oninterviews and thematic analysis of student statements. The purpose of this paper is to introducea new analysis technique. This analysis technique developed pragmatically over the course of ayear of collaborative analysis between two post-doctoral researchers. The project focused oninvestigating sets of student interviews in order to begin to develop a theory of conceptualchange in engineering.Novice-led paired thematic analysis is built on a dyadic interaction between researchers whereone researcher is significantly more familiar with and knowledgeable about the content area ofthe interviews. In these particular cases, the novice had usually had one pertinent undergraduatecourse within the last ten years without any follow-up engagement with the material. Themethod involves an iterative movement between three stages: 1) Instruction, 2) Parallel Coding,3) Discussion. These three stages periodically culminated in a fourth stage in which sustaineddisagreements from the Discussion stage are challenged and compared in terms of additionalresearch on the subject area (if necessary) and additional analysis.There is likely an ideal level of “novice,” or at least some practical range outside of which thebeneficial practices are overwhelmed by either too little or too much instruction. A key featureis the lack of shared assumptions; a novice who is familiar enough with the content to be able toimmediately discern the meaning and intent of the interview practices will not be able tointerrogate the data from a new perspective. Comparisons between the novice’s learningprocesses and the understanding of the student identify areas where purely expert analysis wouldunfairly devalue student reasoning, or conversely, where experts would inappropriately moresophisticated reasoning that students actually offered.
Montfort, D. B., & Herman, G. L., & Brown, S. A., & Matusovich, H. M., & Streveler, R. A. (2013, June), Novice-led paired thematic analysis: A method for conceptual change in engineering Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--22318
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