. There are various criticisms levelled at qualitative analysis
including issues relating to validity, reliability and credibility. Researchers
can address these through a range of methods including triangulation of
data, member validation, careful sampling and transparency of approach.
The themes resulting from this form of analysis can illuminate participants’
meanings, actions and social contexts relating to the phenomena under
By the end of this chapter you should be able to:
1. Understand what qualitative data is and how it can
This chapter will examine the origins of measurement scales in research by
considering the science of psychological testing. In particular the chapter
provides a brief definition of a measurement scale, outlines why scales are
used, examines the design and evaluation of scales, discusses what the
responses to scales mean, outlines advantages and limitations of their use,
and provides examples of measurement scales developed and used in the EQUIP
project and other published mental health research. In recent years, as a
response to criticisms that measurement scales are often not
patient-oriented, we have seen increasing emphasis placed on the development
of Patient Reported Outcomes Measures (PROMs). These tend to be less
focussed on symptoms and more on the everyday experiences of people using
services. They are much more likely to be designed and developed in
collaboration with service users. The EQUIP research project developed a
good quality PROM for assessing user and carer involvement in care planning,
the first such measure of its kind in mental health.
accepted as a concept within policy and public engagement communities (Schäfer, 2009 ; Trench, 2008 ). The lack of a more fixed definition has led to some criticism that it allows for interpretations which effectively permit public relations in disguise (Powell and Colin, 2009 ), or do not reflect a more multifarious process which can be occurring, especially around complex areas of policymaking that relate to emerging areas of research (Irwin, 2009 ; Irwin and Michael, 2003 ).
In the context of research and engagement within policy or political settings
failing to share their evaluation results and insights, and this has led to criticism of the community and individual projects for ‘reinventing the wheel’. This chapter will highlight not only why it is important to share best practice with this community but also how readers might further disseminate their work. It also considers the ‘conundrum’ of communicating about research communication. The chapter finishes with a short summary of the key points of this book and what we hope are encouraging and motivational, confidence-building insights that will enable readers to
researchers may feel they are walking into a ‘hot climate’ if they communicate publicly about their research (Loader and Sparks, 2011 : 2; Grauerholz and Baker-Sperry, 2007 ).
Nevertheless, a decade of increased financial and funding pressures across all subject areas has led to a heightened awareness of the need for a discipline to display its social worth, and there have been various discipline-based ‘campaigns’ which have lobbied for the importance of a particular field. This focus on demonstrating the public relevance of research is not without criticism
opportunities to learn and share knowledge across all subject matters, including through research lectures which were open to all (Lynn, 2008 ; Knight, 2006 ). Such public discussions included literary journals, debating societies, coffee houses and salons, where discussions included emerging scientific research as well as art and literary criticism (Bennett, 1995 ). Although these social spaces had an essential role in encouraging more professional communication, access to such groups was not yet defined by professional status. ‘Penny Universities’ from the late
deployed to ‘generate movement’: to change people’s attitudes, increase public support, alter behaviour, and overcome barriers and impediments. (Barnett and Mahony, 2011 : 5)
Some of the criticisms we may make of segmentation approaches relate to their context within a wider framework of social marketing techniques, and in particular those which are seeking to create behaviour change. Social marketing is used in a variety of settings including health, social policy, science and the environment, particularly by government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs
media to connect with different groups. But however you decide to work with social media, imagining your audience is a key starting point.
Social media have come under scrutiny and criticism from scholars, particularly in relation to their economic models. While Fuchs ( 2014 ) would agree that social media are technologies that facilitate engagement and interaction, he raises concerns that the creativity and knowledge generation made possible through these technologies will also lead to exploitation. Fuchs ( 2014 : 60) argues that ‘visibility is a central