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Study Group on Qualitative Research Drawing Various "Lives"

Projects Led by Graduate Students at Ars Vivendi in Academic Year 2010

Japanese Page

■Our Project Plan
◆Aims: To examine the depiction of various changes with qualitative research and its methodology.

◆Project Member *as of Academic Year 2010
・Project Leader: AKASAKA Mayu (Graduate Student, Graduate School of Letters, Ritsumeikan University)
HIDAKA Tomoo (Graduate Student, Graduate School of Letters, Ritsumeikan University)
・TANIMURA Hitomi (Graduate Student, Graduate School of Core Ethics and Frontier Sciences, Ritsumeikan University)
AOKI Chihoko Post Doctoral Fellow at Ritsumeikan University

◆Advisory Professor: SATO Tatsuya (Professor, Graduate School of Letters, Ritsumeikan University)

■Our Project Plan
1. Topics and Contribution to the Global COE Program Ars Vivendi
(1)Topics, Objectives and Impacts
The project aims to examine the way of qualitative research to depict various transformation in people's life course more clearly in terms of a "process" by focusing on individual cases. Our main activities are conducted through field work and interview, and the purposes of our project are to 1) descriptively understand the way of lives of people who live with progressive or chronic diseases or women with various life courses, and 2) hold seminars in order to structurally learn the methodology of qualitative research, which is required to conduct research. The significance of this project is to examine problems and solutions of existing qualitative research in terms of descriptive methodology, analysis methodology and the possiblity of knowledge conversion through discussions of methodological issues raised in different research fields of project members.

(2)Contribution to the Global COE Program Ars Vivendi
By examining the methodology to describe "lives" of people with diseases or ones with various life courses from the viewpoint of the "process" as microscopic development, we believe the project can refine such qualitative research methodologies as interview and field work which are widely used at the Global COE Program Ars Vivendi. We aim to both shed light on challenges in existing qualitative methodology and present solutions against them by focusing not only on depicting the emotional process of the research collaborators (research subject), but on the interactional behaviors and narratives between researchers and the research subject, which are often overlooked, and also on the context they arise and its development process.

2. Research Plan, Method and Publication of Research Products
During the project term from November 2010 through March 2011, the project members will conduct each research activity. We also hold a seminar every month to share the challenges in each member's research, and to learn the methodology. We will refine our achievements through presentations at academic societies.

Concerning 1), Akasaka studies on patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and examines the depiction of their experiences of the disease and the possibility of mental care; Hidaka extracts "the home nursing culture of patients" through long-term participant observation at the home of patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS); Tanimura conducts qualitative research on marriage style, employment situation and parent-child relationship in old-age, focusing on various life courses of women; Aoki studies positions of what cannot be done by employers with disabilities in their working conditions. In 2), the project members not only learn the methodology in monthly seminars, but also discuss the challenges of the methodology they found in their own research.

We plan to present our research achievements through presentations and paper submission at the Japanese Association of Qualitative Psychology (Akasaka and Hidaka, November 2010), and the Japan Society of Developmental Psychology (Tanimura, March 2011). We also plan to make our presentations at the 12th European Congress of Psychology (Akasaka, Hidaka, Tanimura, and Aoki; Istanbul, July 2011). By keeping our cooperative relationship in the following year, we will make presentations, as a part of achievements of"Ars Vivendi", at the international academic society.

■Activity Records

◆Attendance at the Japanese Association of Qualitative Psychology

*The Japanese page is prepared by AOKI Chihoko
Translation by HIRAGA Midori
Proofread by KATAOKA Minoru
UP:March 7, 2011 REV: