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Responses and reflections Charles Anderson, School of Education, University of Edinburgh.

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1 Responses and reflections Charles Anderson, School of Education, University of Edinburgh


3 Role of the literature on evaluation … unlike most other social scientists, who assume an audience of peers/scholars, evaluators must negotiate whose questions will be addressed and whose interests will be served by their work (Greene, 1994, p.531)

4 Researcher stance too detached / too close? one possible stance: impartial sympathetic observer (Dewey,1932: Hansen, 1993)

5 What is a policy? process view of policy offering scope for qualitative approaches

6 Qualitative research, policy and practice qualitative research directly for policy and practice qualitative research on policy and practice

7 Qualitative research on policy qualitative research on policy: contextualisation, analysis of the discourses deployed in policies, how are practitioners and service users positioned within policies.

8 Qualitative research on practice the value of fine-grained analyses of skilled practice

9 Communication and interaction with practitioners critique of designed dialogues (Robertson and Dale, 2003) fostering collaborative dialogues reporting in a dialogic form

10 Validation of qualitative inquiry Mishler reformulating validation as the social construction of knowledge. With this reformulation the key issue becomes whether the relevant community of scientists evaluates reported findings as sufficiently trustworthy to rely on them for their own work. (Mishler, 1992, p.417)

11 trustworthiness The view of validation that I have advanced suggests that the questions to be asked about my study, and of any study within any research tradition, are: What are the warrants for my claims? Could other investigators make a reasonable judgment of their adequacy? Would they be able to determine how my findings and interpretations were produced and, on that basis, decide whether they were trustworthy enough to be relied upon for their own work?

12 trustworthiness I believe these questions have affirmative answers. The primary reason is the visibility of the work: of the data in the form of the texts used in the analysis, with full transcripts and tapes that can be made available to other researchers; of the methods that transformed the texts into findings; and of the direct linkages shown between data, findings, and interpretation. (Mishler, 1990, p.429)

13 References Dewey, J. (1932). Theory of the moral life. In J. Dewey and J. H. Tufts Ethics. (rev. edn.) New York: Henry Holt. Greene, J.G. (1994). Qualitative program evaluation: practice and promise. In N. K. Denzin and Y. S. Lincoln (eds.) Handbook of Qualitative Research. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Hansen, D. T. (1993). The moral importance of the teachers style. Journal of Curriculum Studies, 25, 5,

14 References Mishler, E. G. (1990). Validation in Inquiry-Guided Research: The Role of Exemplars in Narrative Studies. Harvard Educational Review, 60, 4, Robertson, S. L. and Dale, R. (2003). Designed Dialogues: The Real Politics of Evidence-Based Practice and Education Policy Research in England. In M.B.Ginsburg and J.M. Gorostiaga (eds.) Limitations and possibilities of dialogue among researchers, policy makers and practitioners: international perspectives on the field of education. New York/London: Routledge.

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