PUBH5805 Qualitative Research Methods in Health

6 points
(see Timetable)

If this unit does not have an online alternative, then students who are presently unable to enter Western Australia and whose studies would be delayed by an inability to complete this unit, should contact the unit coordinator (details given on this page) to ascertain, on an individual case-by-case basis, if alternate arrangements can be made to support their study in this unit.

Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face Predominantly face-to-face. On campus attendance required to complete this unit. May have accompanying resources online.
Semester 1OnlineOnline flexible 100% Online Unit. NO campus face-to-face attendance is required to complete this unit. All study requirements are online only. Unit is asynchronous delivery, with NO requirement for students to participate online at specific times.
The objectives of this unit are to enable students to understand philosophical assumptions of, and approaches to, qualitative research and engage in related theoretical debates around qualitative research, with particular reference to health. Students acquire the theoretical and practical knowledge and skills to enable them to undertake sound qualitative research. The topics include an introduction to qualitative research; the role of qualitative research in health and public health; paradigm and interpretive frameworks; designing and critically reviewing qualitative research proposals; approaches to qualitative research; data collection and instrument development; rigour, ethics and sampling in qualitative research; in-depth interviews, participant observation, group discussions and focus groups; qualitative data analysis; qualitative research with minority groups; qualitative evaluation research; writing and publishing qualitative research; and the future strengths and challenges of qualitative research.
Students are able to (1) demonstrate an understanding of philosophical assumptions of and theoretical debates in qualitative research; (2) apply different approaches to qualitative research; (3) critically appraise qualitative research articles/reports; (4) design a qualitative research proposal; (5) plan qualitative data collection methods appropriately; (6) conduct simple data analysis and reporting related to small-scale qualitative data sets; (7) evaluate ethics issues in qualitative research; and (8) construct appropriate qualitative research reports.
Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) essay—ethics and qualitative research; (2) critique of qualitative research article; and (3) qualitative research proposal. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Professor Linda Slack-Smith
Contact hours
lectures/tutorials: 3 hours per week
This unit is available both face-to-face and online. Please choose carefully when enrolling.
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.