Qualitative Multi-Method Research Initiative (QUAL)

QUAL Concentration

The QUAL Concentration is an optional track for UW graduate and doctoral students. It involves:

(1) completing one of the QUAL Workshops;

(2) taking a minimum of three advanced courses at the 500 level in relevant research design and/or methods (minimum 9 credits). Classes may be selected from pre-approved QUAL Courses Lists I and II, and at least one must be from List I (see below); and

(3) attending a minimum of four QUAL Speaker Series talks.

Students and their chair may petition the QUAL Steering Committee to substitute another course outside of List II. Students must obtain a minimum grade point average of 3.5 for their three approved courses. The QUAL Steering Committee is responsible for approving a student’s course plan in advance, and for formally granting the QUAL Concentration.

Application Process

To declare their intention to complete the QUAL Concentration, graduate students must fill out the planning form and submit it to qual@uw.edu – on a rolling deadline, the end of the first week of academic quarters (fall, winter, spring). The QUAL Steering Committee will review and approve the plan in advance. Once all requirements are met, the student needs to submit the checklist form to qual@uw.edu, the Committee will review the checklist and an unofficial transcript before granting the QUAL Concentration. Questions about the forms or process should be directed to Valentina Petrova, QUAL Program Manager – petrova@uw.edu, Thomson Hall 035C.

QUAL Courses List I

COM 513 Fieldwork Research Methods

Provides training in the design and implementation of fieldwork research methods, with a focus on participant observation and ethnography.

SOC 555/JSIS 595/LAW B 554 Qualitative Case-Based Research Methods

This course is an introduction to the concepts and practices that inform case‐based research methods in the social sciences. We will review the basic concepts and practices in case‐based research methods and also consider debates as to the role of theory in research, the drawing of general inferences and the assessment of causality in case studies. The second part of the course focuses on interview techniques and content analysis which are frequently used in case‐based research.

POLS 504 Designing Multi-Method Field Research

Provides training in how to design and implement multi-method field research in the social sciences, covering qualitative/ethnographic approaches; survey design, implementation, and analysis; and the design and implementation of lab, survey, and field experiments.

(Please note, this course has a prerequisite, POLS/CS&SS 510, Maximum Likelihood Methods for the Social Sciences; if requesting to register for POLS 504 without this prerequisite, students need to email the instructor in advance and list already completed methodology training.)

ANTH 519/GH 538 Advanced Qualitative Research Methods in Anthropology and Public Health

Provides students with both a theoretical foundation in qualitative approaches to research in anthropology and public health and in-depth training in qualitative data management, analysis, interpretation, and presentation. Focuses on how to frame research questions, design appropriate research strategies that incorporate qualitative methods, and analyze data.

SOC 582 A Doing Qualitative Research

This course takes a hands-on approach to learning qualitative sociological research. The focus of this class is on how we move the big questions of design into the details of implementation.

SOCWL 581 Qualitative Research: Methods and Designs

The course assumes a basic understanding of philosophy of science issues related to ontology and epistemology. Interpretive research is epistemologically eclectic, so we will analyze examples of research from post-positivist, interpretivist/constructionist and critical perspectives. We will focus on the pragmatic ways in which qualitative/interpretive research informs, complements and contravenes dominant postpositivist (i.e., traditional quantitative) research.

SOCWL 585 Qualitative Research Design and Data Collection (Qualitative Methods in Social Work Research I)

This course is the first in a two quarter sequence designed to give students the opportunity to design and conduct a qualitative research project that will advance their overall career goals. Students who take both classes will be well-positioned with the other coursework they have taken in Social Welfare to teach qualitative research upon graduation.

PUBPOL 525 Qualitative Methods and Field Analysis

This course serves as an introduction to qualitative methods, specifically designed for public policy students. The course will instruct students in four methodological approaches: interviews, ethnographic observations, focus groups and qualitative surveys.

QUAL Courses List II

AIS 501/GWSS 510 Documentary Research Methods for the Social Sciences and Humanities

ANTH 549/DANCE 550 Dance Ethnography

ANTH 550 Ethnographic Field Techniques (Decolonizing Methodologies)

BH 522 Advanced Qualitative Methods

BIO A 525 Research Methods and Study Design in Biocultural Anthropology

COM 527 Global Communication Research Methods

FR 590 Qualitative Research Methods

GEOG 525 Advanced Qualitative Methods in Geography

JSIS 512 (formerly JSIS 578) Qualitative Data Analysis

SOCWL 586 Qualitative Methods in Social Work Research II

For more information on these classes, including their syllabi and when they are offered, visit our Courses page.