At the beginning of writing a methodology part of my mini-thesis which is called «Blogging as a platform to improve writing skills», I had no idea how to write this part and collect the data. However, after the effective meeting with my Instructor I started to think of the research design, sampling, and methods of data collection. Thus, I decided to use qualitative “interview-based study” to address the research question which is “What are the Kazakhstani secondary school teachers’ perceptions on the usage of educational blogs in their teaching, especially to improve learners’ writing skills?”.
As this is “interview-based study”, a semi-structured interview was used to collect data. As Flick (2013) describes, the semi-structured interview design gives participants time to express their view and allows the researcher to use follow-up questions to develop the participants responses.
After developing an interview protocol, I asked two of my group mates, who were studied at Nazarbayev University Graduate School of Education and three of my colleagues at Nazarbayev Intellectual school in Uralsk to take part in my study. First two participants do not use educational blogs in their teaching and learning, however they shared their own practice of using blogs for learning and sharing. But three others who work at NIS Uralsk have experience of using educational blogs in teaching, especially to improve writing skills.
While interviewing the participants I noticed the differences between the just writing and conducting research. One of the differences is that interview gives in-depth analysis and description of the topic. I could find some interesting ideas that were not assumed by me. Interview really gives more opinions and perceptions. I also think that participants’ openness and wish to participate in the study affect to the interview results. For example, one of my interviewee’s responses were so short that I could not find any unusual or interesting answer from the conversation. So one of the lessons I made from the research collection part is that participants should be effectively selected and motivated.
Flick, U. (2013). The SAGE handbook of qualitative data analysis. London: SAGE Publications Ltd. doi: 10.4135/9781446282243