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Title: Boolean Classes and Qualitative Research
Authors: Nathan, Mitchell
Jackson, Kristi
Issue Date: Jun-2006
Publisher: International Society of the Learning Sciences
Citation: Nathan, M. & Jackson, K. (2006). Boolean Classes and Qualitative Research. In Barab, S. A., Hay, K. E., & Hickey, D. T. (Eds.), The International Conference of the Learning Sciences: Indiana University 2006. Proceedings of ICLS 2006, Volume 1 (pp. 502-508). Bloomington, Indiana, USA: International Society of the Learning Sciences.
Abstract: The prominent role of Boolean classes in qualitative data analysis software is viewed by some as an encroachment of Logical Positivism on qualitative research methodology. Rather than expressing some transcendent notion of a universal logic of formal entities (e.g., sets) that supercedes our knowable experience, we articulate an embodiment perspective, whereby Boolean classes are conceptual metaphors for apprehending and manipulating data, concepts and categories the same way we perceive and manipulate worldly objects and containers. Drawing on examples from seminal approaches to qualitative methods, we demonstrate how one central aspect of qualitative research practices--the process of coding data--can productively be viewed in terms of collecting and containing concepts and categories in this embodied sense. We discuss the implications of this for coding and for bridging qualitative and quantitative methods of inquiry.
Appears in Collections:ICLS 2006

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