Short Courses

Policy analysis and evaluation from a qualitative perspective

10th January 2012 to 13th January 2012

The Research Methods short courses run from 09.30 to 17.00 each day at the main Institute of Education building at 20 Bedford Way.

For detailed information on the courses and booking information, please see the IOE Research Methods Short Course Programme

Policy analysis and evaluation from a qualitative perspective

3 days | 10-12 Jan 2012 | £700

Tutor: Professor Gemma Moss

This three day course is for researchers who want to develop their understanding of
qualitative methods of social research and how they can be used effectively for policyrelated
research and evaluation. Qualitative research methods and designs provide
an important means of understanding the social world and of evaluating the
consequences of policies that have been designed to impact upon social life. This
course aims to familiarise students with the principles and practices of a range of
approaches to qualitative research and evaluation; their strengths and limitations;
and their application to government and policy-related research questions.

The course will help students develop the skills and understandings required to
conduct, design and evaluate research involving qualitative data; appreciate key
ethical and political issues in the conduct and dissemination of qualitative research;
and understand the value of qualitative evaluation.

The course is suitable for students with differing levels of experience in using
qualitative approaches, including those with primarily quantitative backgrounds. It
would benefit anyone who wants to strengthen their understanding of the application
of qualitative methods to policy-based research.

This course will cover:

  • The theory and practice of conducting qualitative research in policy settings;
  • Knowledge, values and methods in qualitative research;
  • Qualitative research methods for policy evaluation;
  • Issues in qualitative research design;
  • Qualitative data analysis and generalisability in qualitative research.

Expected learning outcomes

By the end of the course you should be able to:

  • understand and know how to formulate and apply a range of qualitative research designs and methods to policy research questions;
  • understand the contribution qualitative approaches can make to research and evaluation for policy
  • assess when to use qualitative as opposed to quantitative methods, and when to combine approaches
  • critically evaluate qualitative research

What previous students have said about this course:

'Should be compulsory. My all-round research skills are richer for having attended this

'Excellent that there were exercises for each element and could relate them to actual
practices back at work.'

'Good range of topics, all linked, good pace.'