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Delivered over five days in Oxford, this one week long training course provides hands-on practical experience of different qualitative methods including in-depth interviewing, focus groups and ethnography, as well as developing skills in thematic analysis. It is particularly suited for people who are starting work on a project with a qualitative dimension, doctoral students at the beginning of their projects, and those who are thinking about using qualitative research methods for the first time. The course also provides a useful introduction or refresher for researchers, academics, or managers who are supervising students or those doing qualitative research projects.

While this course is aimed at health professionals, researchers, academics and postgraduate students, the skills developed here apply to many settings  - so everyone is welcome, regardless of their professional or research background.


Recent courses have included sessions on: introduction to qualitative research, research design, ethnography, conducting a literature search, qualitative interviewing, recruitment and sampling, focus groups, thematic qualitative data analysis, NVivo, other approaches to analysis, ethics, conversation analysis and the quality of qualitative research. 

The course is very much weighted to practical sessions and participants will have the opportunity to present a research proposal, practise interviewing and observation skills, facilitate focus groups, and analyse data. There will also be an optional evening session covering video interviewing, and a guest speaker presentation.


By the end of the course participants will:

  • have an understanding of different methodological approaches to qualitative research,
  • be able to search effectively for online resources using sensitive or specific search filters,
  • understand the key issues around recruitment and sampling in qualitative research,
  • have developed skills to write an interview schedule,
  • have practical experience of conducting in-depth interviews, ethnographic observation, and organising and running focus groups,
  • be able to discuss some of the ethical issues associated with conducting qualitative research,
  • have developed skills to analyse qualitative data using a thematic approach,
  • be aware of other approaches to analysis
  • be able to appraise the quality of qualitative research.