Essay Sample: Introduction to Qualitative Method in HIV Research

Published: 2019-09-26
Essay Sample: Introduction to Qualitative Method in HIV Research
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Research Science HIV
Pages: 8
Wordcount: 1993 words
17 min read

The qualitative method involves the investigation of things in their standard settings, endeavoring to comprehend, or translate, phenomena as far as the implications individuals bring to them. Its a method that includes the contemplated utilization of an assortment of observational materials-contextual analysis, personal experience, thoughtful, biography, meeting, observational, recorded, interaction and visual writings that portray whole and dangerous minutes and implications in people's lives.The main ideas of the qualitative method are accentuation on inferring a comprehension of how individuals see and build their lives as necessary procedures. Therefore, the convenient methods that are involved in the qualitative research includetalking with people through different strategies and noting down their views, watching individuals over the span of their day by day schedules, and recording their practices

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According to Weibel, there are two main reasons why qualitative methods are the best in HIV research (Patton, M. Q. 2005). One of the reasons is that the development of meaningful and structured polls agreeable to factual investigation requires the researcher to have huge recognition with the way focused respondents see their reality. Therefore, a clear picture of the significance of leading personal exploration in the early periods of an examination venture is created. The other reason why this is an important method in HIV research is that qualitative research requires the analyst to figure out significant study questions, conduct appropriate measurable investigations, and decipher the outcomes. Its one of the most efficient methods accessible for acquiring valuable data in populations where many HIV victims live.

Participant observation

Its one of the qualitative methodologies that involve the researchers going to an environment with HIV victims. The researcher then makes comments from this environment about the occupants activities or asking those questions that relate to HIV research and recording the results. Researchers may, therefore, consider settling in these environments for a while so as to conduct an ongoing survey and in the process obtain valuable results. Participant observation is a very useful method especially when studying things like HIV transmission (Power, R. 1998). While carrying out HIV research in the field, its necessary that the analysts make an individual responsibility to secure the characters of the general population they watch or with whom they communicate. Keeping up secrecy implies guaranteeing that particular people can never connect to the information they give. Researchers should in this manner not record characteristic data, for example, names and addresses of individuals they meet amid member perception.

The utility of this part of member knowledge ought to be clear to those focused on ending the spread of HIV. It empowers the recognizable proof of practices that encourage HIV transmission, the revelation of the significance of those practices to the general population participating in them, and the comprehension of how logical variables impact their event. Participant observation helps in determining the spread of HIV by answering some of the following questions-

What kinds of activities among the membersare associated with HIV spread?

How are these behaviors happening?

Why are the participants in question participating in these activities?

How can the activities be minimized?

Focus groups

While using focus groups to in HIV research, its assumed that opinions are not readily accessible. Viewsare obtained from the members participating in the group. Focus groups can produce more original remarks than meetings(Henning, E., Van Rensburg, W., & Smit, B. 2004). For instance, Geis,in their investigation of the accomplices of individuals with HIV, found that there were more irate remarks about the therapeutic group in the gathering examinations than in the particular meeting. Focus groups lead to the generation of valuable HIV information among the group. Members of the group get the chance to travel to environments with HIV/AIDs victims and gather information among them. The focus groups then brainstorm the information obtained, and this is what makes them very reliable.

Focus groups are used to inform the content and vocabulary of HIV research questionnaires. In New Jersey, for instance, focus groups were utilized to decide local vocabulary for high-hazard practices that led to the spread of HIV and the comprehension of specialized terms and research vocabularies. The mediator was at first informed that "analsex" was not comprehended in the city and that sex in the "butt hole" was the term utilized. With further examining and testing of this data in the gathering, it turned out to be clear that while "butt hole" was used and comprehended by the objective populace, it was considered to be suitable for use by the exploration or well-being foundation.

Phenomenological Study in HIV Research

Phenomenology in HIV research is an investigation of HIV victims and also the individuals surrounding the victims which concentrate on their encounters in their daily lives. Its primary objective is to reveal the importance of lived encounters through such strategies as examination and instinct. It likewise includes portraying a marvel from individual reports in the way they show up and with no preconceived notions. The strategy is for the most part expected to investigate, depict and break down a few variables like HIV transmission in the research. Phenomenological study helps researchers to do this freely and correctly from unexamined guesses. While carrying out HIV research, phenomenological study portrays the regular significance of a few people of their lived experience of the HIV pandemic (Guest, G., Bunce, A., & Johnson, L. 2006). While carrying out this research through phenomenological study, some elements of this method are considered. These features include:

Phenomenology of the essence- this aspect involves analyzing the data obtained from the survey. Phenomenology involves carrying out research and therefore, researchers are required to go out to the field. The data obtained is thoroughly analyzed so as to come up with conclusive results.

Phenomenology of appearance- involves giving attention to the HIV pandemic by dwelling with the data from different perspectives. Therefore, the data obtained is given more focus through this element by looking into various aspects. The area of study is very crucial since the conclusions such as limiting the spread of this pandemic will be applied in this particular field.

Constitutive Phenomenology- investigation of the HIV phenomena as it builds up itself. In this process, the wonders develop in one's awareness, and the procedure along with these lines increases the sense of the dynamic experience in one's association with the world.

In Canada, phenomenological studies led to the results that there was an extensive increment in the quantity of ladies tainted with the human immunodeficiency infection (HIV). The study has also resulted in the knowledge that inside a criticized social connection, exposure of HIV inspiration is still an overall worry among ladies. The whole world thinks less about comprehension of how French-speaking, Quebec-conceived ladies living with HIV, experience their serostatus revelation experience (Kitzinger, J. 1995). A phenomenological study in HIV research has prompted the comprehension that the experience of exposure to HIV is critical to guide activities in the practice to bolster and go with most casualties in their one of a kind reality. Health experts need to expand their part and work on individual, interpersonal, between hierarchical and inter-sectoral levels. Assembly of performers from various divisions would encourage the execution of appropriate and lucky mediations.

Benefits of phenomenological study

A phenomenological investigation of the HIV research focuses on ideas like the method of transmission, causation and possible methods of curing the infection. It helps in minimizing the spread of the pandemic particularly in most places that are studied. This study is an essential process since it leads to the creation of more awareness of HIV. The method is being carried out to depict all the more completely sexual danger practices among youngsters so as to give structure and connection to factual information from populace reviews. Qualitative analysis portrays reactions to HIV/AIDS at the family unit and group level and helps to translate those opinions in respect to sociocultural perspectives of sexuality, well-being, and sickness. It likewise looks to portray the sexual decision-making procedure and its determinants among sexually dynamic youth. Subjective studies decide how to furnish most ladies with the female condom and with abilities to arrange safe sex trying to decrease the spread of the transmission.

Through these benefits, our understanding of the HIV pandemic increases even further. Methods of slowing transmission of this disease become apparent after the phenomenological study.

Efficiency and reliability of phenomenological research

Phenomenological study leads to the researchers going to the field to carry out their research face to face with the correspondents. It also requires the researchers to settle in the area of concern temporarily. Therefore, qualitative research through phenomenological study is one of the most reliable methods in HIV research. First-hand information obtained from conducting surveys, issuing questionnaires makes it very efficient in offering ideas such as controlling transmission of the disease and improving the medication among the infected. Its a very reliable method to an extent that its used by worldwide health organizations such as WHO to conduct the research of HIV.

Pitfalls to the method

There are some problems associated with this approach of the investigation. Its a way that may, at times lack focus in its guidelines and its reporting of the information gathered while the pandemic of studying HIV. While studying the methods of transmission of the AIDS, the researcher is at risk of being infected with the disease. The sample acquired from the field may be insufficient at times, and there may be an inadequate depiction of the example (Smith, J. A., Flowers, P., & Osborn, M. 1997). The sampling issues experienced may be a hindrance in the research about HIV. When the researcher is in an environment where the language used unknown to him, language barrier becomes an enormous issue. While carrying out the phenomenological study, its evident that some individuals suffering from the HIV pandemic dont react well to the researchers conducting this procedure. It, therefore, becomes a problem for the researchers in obtaining data in this method.


The motivation behind the phenomenological study is basically to examine the lived encounters of individuals living with HIV disease. Most discoveries of this study demonstrate that having HIV contamination influences all parts of a person's life. The importance of this study in discovering the challenges of living with HIV disease for the members in this study occurs in several themes such as social segregation, misfortunes, suicide endeavors and managing challenges. A qualitative study has led to a superior understanding of HIV/AIDS. Its now more possible to control the spread of the pandemic for the past 20 years in different ethnic backgrounds.

The exploration includes a lot of issues and the extensive territory secured shows the consistent advancement of subjective proof in HIV/AIDS research and shares the objectives of being focused toward critical thinking. The phenomenological study has added to the thought and usage of a scope of general wellbeing systems intended to piece particular courses of viral transmission in distinct populations. After the phenomenological study, analysts reach the conclusion that members in the HIV research experience social separation, social dismissal, and derision from different sources. Some may incorporate partners, families, companions, schools and the general public. Victimization against these individuals is mainly in conjunction with other social marks of shame, for example, homophobia and the dismissal of intravenous medication clients.


Patton, M. Q. (2005). Qualitative research. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Barroso, J., & Powell-Cope, G. M. (2000). Metasynthesis of Qualitative research on living with HIV infection. Qualitative health research, 10(3), 340-353.

Kitzinger, J. (1995). Qualitative research. Introducing focus groups. BMJ: British medical journal, 311(7000), 299.

Granich, R., Gupta, S., B Suthar, A., Smyth, C., Hoos, D., Vitoria, M., ... & Bazin, B. (2011). Antiretroviral therapy in prevention of HIV and TB: update on current research efforts. Current HIV Research, 9(6), 446-469.

Guest, G., Bunce, A., & Johnson, L. (2006). How many interviews are enough? An experiment with data saturation and variability. Field Methods, 18(1), 59-82.

Smith, J. A., Flowers, P., & Osborn, M. (1997). Interpretative phenomenological analysis and the psychology of health and illness. Material discourses of health and illness, 68-91.

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