Sydney School of Education and Social Work events – 2014 Archive

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Challenging methods, methodological challenges

DATA SELECTION AS AN ETHICAL ISSUE: DEALING WITH OUTLIERS IN TELLING A RESEARCH STORY

21 August 2014

Data selection is an important issue both in terms of what is included and what is excluded from a study. Often ‘outlier’ data which doesn’t fit the general picture of other data, or which deviates markedly from other data in a sample, is excluded from a study; the argument is made that the results of the study will be distorted by the inclusion of this data. While there is a sense in which this is true for large‐scale quantitative studies, and for some statistical measures, the picture is more complex when this rationale is applied to smaller‐scale qualitative studies. Even though qualitative researchers don’t typically aim for generalisability in the way that quantitative researchers may, the notions of comparability and transferability that are frequently applied in qualitative research often encourage a similar approach to data inclusion and exclusion. This presentation reports on two different studies where data inclusion and exclusion become an issue: one where the inclusion of atypical data changed, in a significant way, the insights that were gained from the research and another where outlier data was initially included, but later excluded, even though the results remained essentially the same.

Event details


Challenging methods, methodological challenges: dealing with outliers in telling a research story

Where Room 618, Education Building A35, Manning Rd, University of Sydney
Education Building A35
Click image for interactive map.

When

21 August 2014


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