I'm finding the Luker book to be extremely helpful so far. I did my undergrad in Sociology so I obviously appreciate Luker's sociological references. During my undergrad I took a qualitative research methods course and ended up conducting a study on Afghan-Canadian youth and ethnic identity through the use of interviews. This has definitely caused me to be biased in favour of a qualitative approach and I really agreed with Luker's criticisms of survey methods. I found that my interviews yielded such a wealth of information that I would not have been able to get through a survey. For example, when I asked participants flat out if they had ever experienced discrimination nearly all of them said that they had not. Throughout the course of the 1-3 hour interviews, however, I often discovered that many of my subjects had difficulty finding jobs, had been called derogatory names by people on the streets, and sometimes felt excluded from "Canadian culture". A survey would have simply indicated that Afghan immigrants do not experience discrimination. That being said, I am intrigued by the concept of a middle ground between qualitative and quantitative methods. I'm interested in learning more about quantitative research and how I can combine it with my qualitative training to produce a more complete picture of an issue. What type of experience does everyone else have with research? Does anyone have a preference for qualitative or quantitative methods?
Have a good night and see you all in class tomorrow morning!