Language as the medium of research
Israeli author Asher Shkedi PhD developed Israel’s popular Narralizer, a qualitative data analysis software, and is highly respected for his qualitative research, teacher education and curriculum development. He is the former head of the Department of Teacher Education at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
For those unfamiliar with this topic, Qualitative Research is primarily exploratory research. It is used to gain an understanding of underlying reasons, opinions, and motivations. It provides insights into the problem or helps to develop ideas or hypotheses for potential quantitative research. Or as Dr Shkedi phrases in his Preface, ‘Qualitative research is based on the principle of “the human as an instrument,” which seeks to utilize the researcher’s intuitive, analytical, and verbal discourse skills to conduct proper qualitative research. However, the concept of “the human as an instrument” contains weaknesses which researchers must overcome. These weaknesses stem from the character of intuitive skills, which respond to the research area quickly and instinctively, as well as from the nature of verbal discourse, which is broad in scope and characterized by ambiguity…..Relying solely on intuitive impressions, interesting and challenging as they may be, does not meet the standards of research, but completely blurs the line between research and literary, artistic or journalistic works. In other cases, the difficulty of dealing with the great expanse of data has led researchers to give up the principles of closeness, involvement and empathy, and thus lose the essence of qualitative research. Using supportive software for qualitative analysis will help the researchers cope with these difficulties.’
This is an important book, not only for those involved in this type of research, but also for the general public – an invitation to clearly understand the impact of qualitative research, and the impact of language as a tool. The methodologies are clearly defined - the result being an exceptional tool for students and for teachers!
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