Qualitative Research in Journalism: Taking It to the Streets

Qualitative Research in Journalism: Taking It to the Streets

Qualitative Research in Journalism: Taking It to the Streets

Qualitative Research in Journalism: Taking It to the Streets

Synopsis

This volume highlights the integration of qualitative research methods into traditional journalism, offering new ways of expanding and enhancing news coverage. Designed for readers without prior experience in social science research, this collection presents a wide variety of qualitative techniques and their applications in journalistic practice. The work brings together contributions from professional journalists and journalism scholars who are highly experienced in conducting qualitative research. These experts demonstrate how valid, reliable qualitative procedures can be used to increase coverage and offer new insights. Written in a straightforward, reader-friendly style, features in this volume include: *real-world examples from contemporary newsrooms and interviews with practicing journalists who use the techniques of qualitative research in reporting; *a rationale for the use of qualitative methods in journalism, with an illustration of how various qualitative methods tie together; *step-by-step instructions for applying each methodology; *a solid foundation for understanding the history and theory behind qualitative research and its usefulness in journalism; *chapters on pairing qualitative and quantitative methods in journalism and on detailing partnerships between academics and professional journalists to facilitate newsroom research and reporting; and *a discussion of "objectivity" in qualitative research and in journalism that offers an ethic for journalists of today. The methodologies covered here include oral and life histories, textual analysis, focused interviews, ethnographies, focus groups, and case studies. In addition, a recently developed technique, civic mapping, is presented as a qualitative tool for reporting. Qualitative Research in Journalism is an indispensable resource for current and future journalists interested in enhancing their coverage of the news.

Excerpt

When I look over the landscape of journalism today, I see changes that are almost geological in kind—the plates are shifting, the continent grinds in motion. Familiar features are still there, but from basin to range there are strange formations, and new aspects appear. Below the surface much goes on. The ground rises where before there was nothing to build on. Old ground cracks and sinks.

The hardest problem in journalism today may be to map it, to draw borders around the practice and define what's within or beyond. Is there an audience for serious news? One of the ways we struggle is to map the space available for journalism. The imagined line between “news” and “entertainment” is another. Does the border separating journalism from other creative treatments of reality by the media complex run through counties, or through companies, or sections of the newspaper, portions of the broadcast schedule, segments in the Today Show! Probably it runs through individuals—journalists—producers of news who sway one way, then another; feel commercial pressure, resist it, make space for themselves and for journalism, then lose it, regain it here, give it up over there. Where is journalism in a company like the American newspaper giant, Gannet, which is sometimes devoted to the practice with, let us say, half a heart? Where is “journalism” in that screaming empire known as Fox? Somewhere in the mix.

Difficulties in saying who is a journalist make for unstable ground in the practice. When did former political operative Tim Russert become one, and why is Net gossip Matt Drudge not one? We may be used to questions like that. But now with the Internet the possibility of opening a solo practice in journalism has returned, and we are little used to that. Put up a website with good reporting and commentary and you may be successfully practicing journalism, even though no . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.