Narrative on Approaches’ Matrix

Narrative on Approaches’ Matrix


All the approaches that were addressed in the qualitative research methods matrix share one essential similarity. The similarity is that interviewing can be used in all methods as a way of collecting primary data (Patton, 2014). Another similarity is that almost all the methods have some roots in the philosophy discipline. Another crucial similarity between nearly all the approaches is that the experiences of the participants are collected and analyzed to understand their subjective views, beliefs, and opinions regarding things. The basic qualitative inquiry approach and the phenomenology approach are especially keen on individual experiences. Another fundamental similarity between all the approaches regards data analysis. All methods involve the coding of qualitative data and organizing the codes into categories. The identification of themes in data analysis is also part of almost all the discussed approaches.


The eight approaches discussed in the matrix differ in some respects. The basic qualitative inquiry approach relies on interviews to collect data while the case study approach relies on a variety of data collection tools like observations, interviews, documents of the case, and archives (Patton, 2014; Baxter, & Jack, 2008). The grounded theory approach focuses on the development of theories to explain phenomena while the other approaches do not focus very much on the development of theories (Grand Canyon University, n.d.). The various approaches differ also concerning the sampling issues. For example, in the basic qualitative approach sampling method choice depends on the research question. In the grounded theory approach, theoretical sampling is applied (Grand Canyon University, n.d.). The case study and phenomenology approaches favor purposeful sampling as they are keen on gaining data from rich sources (Baxter & Jack, 2008). The systems theory approach differs from all the other approaches as it focuses mainly on the functioning of whole systems and their components and the analysis process involves the evaluation of how a system functions, its subsystems and boundaries (Luhmann, Baecker, & Gilgen, 2013).

Lessons Learned from Developing the Matrix

I have learned several critical lessons from developing the matrix. One lesson is that there are many ways to approach qualitative research and that the way to follow depends on the research question that one aims to pursue. Another lesson that I have learned is the uniqueness of each method. After selecting one qualitative research approach, one has to adhere to some of the procedures that are core to the method such as the data analysis procedure. Conducting research under each approach is more comfortable as one has some insights regarding the best practices to follow in each framework.

Learning about the different approaches also aided me to settle on an approach that I think will help study my chosen research topic. I learned about the important questions that each approach seeks to answer. I also learned about the unique terminologies that are typically used in formulating research questions within the different frameworks. An analysis of my research question and the terminology that I used to develop the problem helped me evaluate which approach will be best suited to investigate the problem. Without adequate knowledge regarding the different methods available I would not have made an informed decision.



Selected Approach

The approach that I intend to use to investigate my research question is the basic qualitative inquiry approach. One reason why I chose the method is that it focuses on the exploration and description of experiences and that is the focus of my study. The guideline for data analysis that is recommended for the approach is content analysis. Content analysis will be effective in the analysis of the data that I will collect from participants using interviews. Another reason why I chose the approach is that it is simple and straightforward compared to other approaches. As a beginner researcher, I will be more comfortable using the approach in my study.





Baxter, P., & Jack, S. (2008). Qualitative case study methodology: Study design and implementation for novice researchers. The qualitative report13(4), 544-559.

Grand Canyon University. Qualitative Approaches – Center for Innovation in Research and Teaching. Retrieved from

Kukla, A. (2013). Social constructivism and the philosophy of science. Routledge.

Luhmann, N., Baecker, D., & Gilgen, P. (2013). Introduction to systems theory. Cambridge: Polity.

Patton, M.Q. (2014). Qualitative Research & Evaluation Methods: Integrating Theory and Practice. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications