Methodological Triangulation in Qualitative Studies

Methodological Triangulation
Methodological Triangulation

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Methodological Triangulation


Human interaction regarding family is somewhat complicated owing to the host of attributes that influence the person’s motives toward the other and the characteristics and effects of communication as the formulation of meaning between two or more individuals. This paper delineates two schools of thought, theoretical and practical, which highlight the significance of methodological triangulation in studying communication.

While the theoretical argument stipulates the modes of logic, inquiry, and explanation employed in research, the practical argument postulates the association between concept, technique and, and the purpose of investigation and validates how methodological triangulation incorporates alternative views on communication occurrences (Wood, 2005). In this paper, methodological triangulation is discussed.

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Triangulation: Determining the Reliability of Qualitative Studies

Accuracy, in a qualitative study, submits to whether the outcomes of a study are probable and reliable- probable in the sense that study outcomes represent the circumstances and reliable within the meaning that evidence underpins the study findings (Wood, 2005).  Triangulation is an approach employed by qualitative scholars to evaluate and determine validity in their results by assessing a research question from various angles.

However, there has been a common misconception that the aim of triangulation is to realize accuracy from different sources of data. The truth is that inconsistencies are conceivable based on the comparative strength of divergent approaches.  In Patton’s perspective, these discrepancies should be seen as diluting the evidence, but rather as an opportunity to unravel the underlying rationale in the data. 

Methodological Triangulation

Methodological triangulation entails the use of various qualitative and qualitative approaches to studying the program. For instance, outcomes from questionnaires, focus groups, and interviews could be evaluated to determine similarities of results.  The reliability of the data can only be evident when results from each approach are similar. For instance, suppose a scholar is piloting a case study of a welfare-to-work participant to examine the transformations in his life for taking part in the program for more than 12 months. 

The scholar would be required to use interviews, observations, analysis or any other practical approach to evaluating the changes (Thurmond, 2001). The researcher can also assess respondents, their family members and event workers for the quantitative approach. If the outcomes from all of the procedures draw the same or comparable results, then validity has been determined.

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Advantages of methodological triangulation

Methodological triangulation increases confidence, create innovative approaches of comprehending a given phenomenon, demonstrate distinct findings, difficulties or integrate theories and provide a clearer recognition of the issues. All these benefits are a result of diversity as well as the quantity of information that may be used in the analysis. For instance, methodological triangulation has been used to get the detailed opinion of family needs in critical care (Thurmond, 2001).

Using questionnaires and interviews, participants can use such sessions as therapies while non-participants may communicate their disappointments on the questionnaires. Therefore, interviews and questionnaires enhance the depth of findings, which could be impossible through a single method, thus increases not only validity but also the utility of results.


Methodological triangulation may be time-consuming. Gathering information requires planning and resource organization something that may not be available to researchers. Also, it can lead to disharmony of researcher’s bias and conflict due to theoretical framework inadequate understanding of the importance of methodological triangulation.

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By and large, methodological triangulation is an important strategy in the qualitative study; however it is necessary to weigh the benefits and challenges before using it. If a researcher integrates triangulation in a study, some triangulations may be applied; environmental, methodological, data and theory. Methodological triangulation may be employed to maximize the investigator’s comprehension of the problem while increasing confidence in results of qualitative research.


Thurmond, V.A. (2001) The Point of Triangulation. The Journal of Nursing Scholarship. 33 (3): 253-8

Wood, J. T. (2005). Communication Mosaics: an Introduction to the Field of Communication. Belmont, CA: Thomson.

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Qualitative EITI Reporting

Qualitative EITI Report
Qualitative EITI Report

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This report therefore seeks to examine the role of the civil society in ensuring a qualitative EITI report. This can be seen in the manner in which revenues generated from the minerals and oil is in this case utilized in the transformation of different economies with the aim of reducing poverty and raising the standards of living for different population in resource-rich nations.

The Role of Civil Society in Ensuring a Qualitative EITI Report


The purpose of this report is to establish the involvement of the civil society in determining an EITI qualitative reporting. The paper will critically establish the functions of the civil society the process of EITI qualitative reporting. It is vital to consider that states that incorporate the element of EITI make a commitment to strengthen the aspect of transparency in the revenues generated from its natural resource revenues. The citizens of these states are also accorded the responsibility of holding the state and the government accountable on how these resources are dispensed (Disclosure as Governance 2010). This aids in the building of prosperous and stable societies that function in an effective manner in the global economy.

On the other hand, much of ETI’s development is owed to the civil society. This clearly depicts the fact that without the existence of the civil society, ETI would not be functional. This is attributed to the fact that the civil society makes concerted advocacy approaches that sees the extractive companies publish their payments to the host governments. Consequently, close to 400 civil society organizations have been committed to the participation of governance through the implementation of ETI in resource rich states around the globe (Sovacool, & Andrews, 2015).

ETI in this case incorporates and approach of governance that advances the element of revenue transparency within the mining, gas, and oil sector through an approach that stresses the need of multi-stakeholder approach with integrated roles of the civil society, the governments and extractive companies (Topal, & Toledano, 2013). Thus the key elements of the success of this approach lies in the ability of developing dialogue that fosters the collaboration between different players in the development, monitoring and evaluation of EITI process. The engagement and functions of the civil society occurs in its approach aimed at overseeing the implementation of EITI in countries and within the international EITI board (Lehrer, & Delaunay, 2009).

EITI Background

In 2002, at the World Summit for Sustainable Development, United Kingdom’s Prime Minister Tony Blair launched the EITI process as the future global transparency standard.  As a coalition of different stakeholders came together, expectations were heightened towards believing that through governance and accountability, nations, companies and other players in the economy would improve their share of revenues being spent on economic growth and poverty reduction.

In this case, the process of EITI has been promoted in international development agendas as an instrument that will finitely establish and develop the resource-rich countries to reap the benefits of their resource endowments, a factor that has exhibited excessive expectations about the impact it could have. The G8 has critically emphasised its support for the EITI process, by initiating effective approaches aimed at improving its transparency, accountability, and good governance and thereby leading to sustainable economic growth in the extractive sector.

The EITI Principles

According to Aaronson (2011), the EITI principles were first initiated in conferences that were held in London in 2003. During these conferences, several states, investors and civil society organizations reaches a consensus on the principles that were required in order to establish transparency over the payments of revenues in the extractive sector (Murphy, 2012).

The EITI aspect holds on the belief that prudence should be a key aspect in the use of natural resources for the development of a sustainable economy and development that would in turn impact poverty reduction approaches (Aaronson, 2011). If the proponents of EITI are not fairly management, this would result in a negative economic and social impact.

EITI on the other hand acknowledge the initiatives directed towards managing wealth that is gained from natural resources with the aim of benefiting the citizens of a state within the domains of sovereign governments, a factor that needs to be initiated within the interests of a national state (Sovacool & Andrews, 2015). EITI also takes into consideration the benefit accrued from the extraction of mineral resources, occurring over a revenue stream for a period of time, a factor that depicts the high dependency on the prices (Aaronson, 2011).

Benefits for Local Communities and Civil Society Organisations

The local community is considered to be the single most beneficiary of the benefits that arise from the increases in revenues. This can be viewed in the efforts that have been developed to ensure resource accountability through good governance, and justice, with the aim of mitigating the element of corruption are promoted and reinforced (Aaronson, 2011). The civil society organizations are also considered as part of the beneficiaries of these efforts as seen in the improved relations developed to influence governments and companies in the process. This can be viewed in their efforts directed towards:

  1. Increasing the opportunities aimed at building and strengthening different networks with the international organizations and investors.
  2. Strengthening public institutions.
  3. Enhancing governance and citizens who are aware of the empowerment.

The climate of transparency is one that ensures the civil society groups are empowered.  An instance of this can be viewed in the implementation of EITI that facilitates the public participation in governance and improves the access to information for civil societies. The local community is aimed at profiting from the increases in revenues. The element of justice, accountability, good governance are promoted and reinforced with the aim of mitigating corrupt practices during the process (Aaronson, 2011).

The Role of Civil Society in EITI Reporting

As argued, the solid involvement and participation of the civil society is considered as essential since it has the capacity to better implement and a reinforce the initiation of a high quality EITI reporting approach. Participation of the civil society needs to be observed in the delivery of EITI results that go beyond the principles of dialogue and the dissemination of reports (PR, 2013). Engagement of the civil society’s in ensuring a qualitative EITI report occurs at different levels that include:  the international EITI Boards and the states that implement the EITI process as part of the multi-stakeholder groups that have the capacity to oversee the EITI (Holden, & Jacobson, 2007).

The civil society as attributed in the process has the powers and initiative to discuss and establish the genuineness of the aspects of revenue transparency and increasingly contribute their experiences and expertise in fostering dialogues with different stakeholders. In some states, the civil society groups are considered to be in the forefront in popularizing EITI. In other regions, the civil society works in supporting legislative processes that are directed towards the strengthening and advancing of the states the agendas on resource and revenue transparency (Holden, & Jacobson, 2007).

This clearly depicts that the role of the civil society has the capacity to monitor and engage in the implementation of national dialogue in addressing some of the issues that are not covered directly by EITI such as the use of revenues that are accrued from the extractive sector.

Experiences that emerge from the implementation of EITI clearly shows that the civil society groups are bound to face several challenges within a state’s level that include the lack of capacity constraints, the lack of resources and other security issues (Pal, & Pantaleo, 2008). EITI Board has a functionally developed range of policy responses that are determined in the strengthening of the EITI requirements aimed at ensuring the civil society groups are fully interdependent and are provided with the opportunity to get engaged within the stages of EITI process.

Within the context of governance and development, the civil society is considered as a third sector that is distinct from the business and government that are functioning as an intermediary institution in ensuring that the issues that deal with the interests of the public within the public domain are coordinated through advocacy (Pal, & Pantaleo, 2008). The goal of this is to ensure these issues are addressed and effectively implemented in order to serve the common interest and good of the society

The non-governmental organizations through their involvement and activities, strong beliefs and principled positions voice out their views and positions to the sectors of the society through an approach that promotes discussions, debates, and constructive engagements. These roles are developed to enrich the public’s participation in the decision-making process thus strengthening good governance, accountability and democratic principles (Frynas, 2010).

These reasons therefore determine the manner in which the concepts of EITI are developed and built through an approach that engages a multi-stakeholder approach. This approach involves several key players such as the government, the civil society and other companies who play different roles in the EITI process. The civil society plays an integral role in reforming the EITI process even in situations where these roles are unclear in several implementing countries. The roles of the civil society would also include:


The civil society organizations beside the aspect of dialogue also share the view that it is their responsibility to identify the key issues that are within the interest of the public and that relate to the mandate of the EITI process that are directed towards extractive revenue transparency, the process of governance and ensure that the identified issues are addressed and brought within the public domain for debate and dialogue (Calland, & Bentley, 2013). Some of the issues that the civil society organizations clearly focus on include the process of leasing, oil block allocations, bidding rounds, the issuance of mining licenses, physical, financial and process management, the environmental standards and so on.

Agenda Setting

The civil society is different states consider the aspect of agenda setting as their traditional responsibility and a primary tool of their engagement (Calland, & Bentley, 2013). Under these roles, the civil society organizations identify some of the issues that are related to the EITI mandate and use these issues to set national and international agendas for the publics discourse, debate and engagement with the governments and the extractive revenue companies with the aim of improving the aspect of governance through a transparent process and accountability that is done through the use of EITI frameworks.

Public Education and Enlightenment

The element of public education and enlightenment in this case is another role of the civil society even though individuals tend to think these needs to be left for the media alone (Shenton, & Hay-Gibson, 2009).

Agents of Social Mobilization and Change

The civil society organizations also makes use of the fact that for the process of EITI to secure the public’s interests required within the sector, there is a need of providing a supporting role-that of acting as the agents of social mobilization and change (Mejía Acosta, 2013). In this case, it is essential to consider that these roles include the sustained mobilization of the opinions of the public with the aim of advancing the course of the EITI process within the areas of legislative processes and policy formulations. These are known and have been considered to come in the form of peaceful protests, resource mechanization and petitions.

Monitoring and Oversight

It is additionally essential to consider that the civil society organizations are also tasked with the responsibility of monitoring the processes and programs of EITI including the policies and the unfolding events within the extractive sector and ensure that accurate reports and facts are provided with the view of directing the appropriate course of action that can improve the process of governance (Mejía Acosta, 2014). The monitoring and oversight in this case needs to be community based and people driven, In order to carry out these functions in an effective manner (Caspary, 2012).


Advisory in this case gives the position of the civil society organizations as some of the professionals within this field that offer fair, profound, qualitative and constructive advice to the EITI processes and in the implementation of an effective EITI process (Mejía Acosta, 2014). The EITI Board in this case needs to be open to advices within the areas of their operations and publicly acknowledge the contribution of the civil society within the EITI process.

Whistle Blowing

The civil society remains in a better position to blow the whistle in the event that extractive revenue transparency functions of the EITI process are not clearly following their mandates. This would therefore see the civil society active is in the exposition of fraudulent practices, process lapses, bribery, corruption, and dishonest dealings with individuals at any stage within the EITI process (Magner, 2015). The functions of whistle blowing as conducted by the civil society may also be used to attract and draw the attention of the areas that have achieved poor performance and that have been neglected and the failures in the rise of statutory responsibilities (Mejía Acosta, 2014).


The civil society has the mandate of taking up the roles of being the observers within certain activities in the EITI process in consultation with the Board and the secretariat. These roles also include the formulation of procurement processes for some of the projects, budget preparations, the development of annual work-plans, and meetings held with the public in situations that are advisable (Eigen, 2013).  In performing these roles, civil society organizations are considered to have the right to engage in independent reporting of these events and give EITI Board the opportunity to make their final comments on these reports before they are disseminated.


The role of the civil society in providing feedback in this case is considered as essential and desirable within the processes of EITI (Mouan, 2010). Many of the civil society organizations in this case draw from professional groupings, coalitions, and clusters and take up the full charge and role of providing adequate feedback to their states through a process that extends to the larger publics interests with the aim of addressing the issues of interests.

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Examples of Restricted Civil Society Group Cases

It is essential to establish that there are a number of examples that depict the restrictions of the civil society in the process of EITI. In one of the illustrations, the government of Congo can be viewed in the detention and trial of two Publishers Brice Mackosso and Christian Mounzeo who tried to publish the state of the nation as opposed to the governments view.

In other countries such as Equatorial Guinea that believe in the authoritarian style of leadership, the situation is conceived to be worse. In Guinea, the President then-Teodoro Obiang Nguema and his government have overtime been criticised by NGOs and other civil society organizations for placing restrictions on the basic civil and political rights, such as freedom of expression.

This therefore determines the fact that the space civil society involvement through activism on issues corruption and transparency remains non-existent as viewed in this states (PWYP, 2006). However, it is essential to determine that a government only has the capacity and power to restrict supporters who contend for transparency in a more discreet way.

For instance, this can be seen in the case of Nigeria where Nuhu Ribadu, who was considered as the head of t Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) then was forced to resign and requested to attend a one year course in policy studies in consideration of the fact that the EFCC had come too close to top policy layers and had arrested several governors for corrupt practices (The Economist, 5 January 2008).

Civil Society is not Strong and Independent enough to take on the Responsibility that EITI Implies

In as much as the formal structure of the EITI process suggestively gives that governments responsibility for the implementation of the EITI process, much responsibility is put on civil society. Civil society in this case is given the power and autonomy to pressure the governments to join their initiatives. Civil society has the power to scrutinise and request for clear information of the figures presented in the EITI reports (in spite of the fact that most reports reveal very limited information), and to determine the manner in which the finances are utilized by the organisations extractive sector works, the payment types utilized, the relevant government receiving the payments and the accountability of these payments.

The list of the expectations from the civil society organizations remain long and for the countries in need of the EITI. In considering that the extractive sectors are, legally, technically and financially complex makes this approach difficult to achieve. In general, the EITI process requires an environment of justice and accountability in order to be implemented.

This therefore requires an environment where the civil society is empowered in knowledge and is considered as independent with the leaders within these organizations elected through a transparent approach that inclusively engages the democratic powers of the system. There is a need of ensuring that there are no conflict of interest that arises between the government, citizens, and the extractive industries.

The voices of the civil society organisations as viewed in this process can be alleged to affirm these organizations limitations within the EITI framework. Aaronson (2008) notes in several countries, the multi-stakeholder approach are an essential element that inhibits these organizations in the departure from the prevailing institutional and political norms. As a result of this, the civil society is incapacitated to effectively participate in the EITI process. In some states, the nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) are considered as autonomous since government officials are given the tasks of appointing the stakeholder groups rather than giving the citizens and NGOs opportunities to choose their representatives.

Discussion of Results

It is arguable that the civil society besides engaging in dialogue within the EITI process is also engaged in several other processes. An instance of this can be viewed in the implementation of EITI that facilitates the public participation in governance and improves the access to information for civil societies (Mouan, 2010).  The local community in this case benefits from the increases in collected revenues that are channeled in projects, while of justice, accountability, and good governance on the part of the civil society are promoted and reinforced. The engagement of the civil society occurs in overseeing the implementation of EITI in countries and within the international EITI board (Walden, Jerome, & Miller, 2007).


Beside the aspect of dialogue, the civil society also shares the view that it is their responsibility to identify the key issues that are within the interest of the public and that relate to the mandate of the EITI process that are directed towards extractive revenue transparency, the process of governance and ensure that the identified issues are addressed and brought within the public domain for debate and dialogue (Frynas, 2010).

Within the context of governance and development, the civil society is considered as a third sector that is distinct from the business and government that are functioning as an intermediary institution in ensuring that the issues that deal with the interests of the public within the public domain are coordinated through advocacy.


In this reports, it is established that in 2002, at the World Summit for Sustainable Development, United Kingdom’s Prime Minister Tony Blair launched the EITI process as the future global transparency standard.  As a coalition of different stakeholders came together, expectations were heightened towards believing that through governance and accountability, nations, companies and other players in the economy would improve their share of revenues being spent on economic growth and poverty reduction.

As determined in this report, the EITI in this case provides a governance approach that advances revenue transparency within the gas, mining, and oil sector through an approach that stresses the need of multi-stakeholder approach with integrated roles of the civil society, the governments and extractive companies.

The solid involvement and participation of the civil society leads the way in the implementation and a reinforcement of high quality EITI reports. This can be achieved when the civil society in this case has the capacity to discuss the aspects of revenue transparency and increasingly contribute their experiences and expertise in fostering dialogues with different stakeholders.


Aaronson, S. A. (2011). Limited partnership: Business, government, civil society, and the public in the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI). Public Administration & Development, 31(1), 50-63. doi:10.1002/pad.588

Calland, R., & Bentley, K. (2013). The Impact and Effectiveness of Transparency and Accountability Initiatives: Freedom of Information. Development Policy Review, 31s69-s87. doi:10.1111/dpr.12020

Carbonnier, G., Brugger, F., & Krause, J. (2011). Global and Local Policy Responses to the Resource Trap. Global Governance, 17(2), 247-264.

Caspary, G. (2012). Practical Steps to Help Countries Overcome the Resource Curse: The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative. Global Governance, 18(2), 171-184.

Disclosure as Governance: The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative and Resource Management in the Developing World. (2010). Global Environmental Politics, 10(3), 53-73.

Eigen, P. (2013). International Corruption: Organized Civil Society for Better Global Governance. Social Research, 80(4), 1287-1308.

Frynas, J. (2010). Corporate Social Responsibility and Societal Governance: Lessons from Transparency in the Oil and Gas SeWhat is Globalization? Journal of Business Ethics, 93163-179. doi:10.1007/s10551-010-0559-1

Holden, W. N., & Jacobson, R. D. (2007). Mining amid armed conflict: nonferrous metals mining in the Philippines. Canadian Geographer, 51(4), 475-500. doi:10.1111/j.1541-0064.2007.00193.x

Koch, L. C., Niesz, T., & McCarthy, H. (2014). Understanding and Reporting Qualitative Research: An Analytical Review and Recommendations for Submitting Authors. Rehabilitation Counseling Bulletin, 57(3), 131-143.

Lehrer, M., & Delaunay, C. (2009). Multinational Enterprises and the Promotion of Civil Society: The Challenge for 21st Century Capitalism. California Management Review, 51(4), 126-147.

Magner, A. L. (2015). Drilling for Disclosure: Resource Extraction Issuer Disclosure and American Petroleum Institute v. SEC. Journal of Corporation Law, 40(2), 521-537.

Mejía Acosta, A. (2013). The Impact and Effectiveness of Accountability and Transparency Initiatives: The Governance of Natural Resources. Development Policy Review, 31s89-s105. doi:10.1111/dpr.12021

Mouan, L. C. (2010). Exploring the potential benefits of Asian participation in the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative: The case of China. Business Strategy & the Environment (John Wiley & Sons, Inc), 19(6), 367-376. doi:10.1002/bse.687

Murphy, E. M. (2012). Disclosure of Payments by Resource Extraction Issuers. Federal Register, 77(177), 56365-56419.

Nurse, C. (2007). Transparency in resource extraction. Accountancy, 139(1366), 38-39.

Pal, N., & Pantaleo, D. C. (2008). From Strategy to Execution: Turning Accelerated Global Change into Opportunity. Berlin: Springer.

PR, N. (2013, August 29). Caracal Energy Inc. – Caracal Listed as a Supporting Company of the EITI. PR Newswire UK Disclose.

Salazar, K. (2012). Establishment of the U.S. Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative Advisory Committee and Request for Nominees. Federal Register, 77(145), 44263-44264.

Schuler, D. A. (2012). A club theory approach to voluntary social programs: Multinational companies and the extractive industries transparency initiative. Business & Politics, 14(3), 1-24. doi:10.1515/bap-2012-0024

Shenton, A. K., & Hay-Gibson, N. V. (2009). Dilemmas and further debates in qualitative method. Education for Information, 27(1), 21-37.

Sovacool, B. K., & Andrews, N. (2015). Does transparency matter? Evaluating the governance impacts of the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in Azerbaijan and Liberia. Resources Policy, 45183-192. doi:10.1016/j.resourpol.2015.04.003

Topal, J., & Toledano, P. (2013). Why the Extractive Industry Should Support Mandatory Transparency: A Shared Value Approach. Business & Society Review (00453609), 118(3), 271-298. doi:10.1111/basr.12011

Walden, R. R., Jerome, R. N., & Miller, R. S. (2007). Utilizing case reports to build awareness of rare complications in critical care. Journal of the Medical Library Association, 95(1), 3-8.

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Ethical Issues in Qualitative Research

Ethical Issues in Qualitative Research
Ethical Issues in Qualitative Research

Ethical Issues in Qualitative Research

            Ethical consideration in the process of research plays an imperative role in promoting research authenticity. Three of the most common qualitative research ethical dilemmas are discussed below.

Conflict of interest

            This dilemma arises when financial or personal considerations threaten to compromise objectivity and professional judgment, thus leading to bias during qualitative research. Conflict of interest may emerge from interpersonal relationships, academic interests, financial partnerships, association with particular organizations, and multiple roles within organization among other incentives that may compromise the researcher’s integrity or respect for policy (Quimby, 2012). Conflict of interest has the potential to imperil the integrity of research and impact on participants’ protection. It may also distract the researcher.

Research with vulnerable and protected populations

            This refers to research that involves obtaining information from individuals who are incapable or relatively incapable of safeguarding their own interests. Examples include children, mentally disabled, handicapped, institutionalized, very sick, racial minorities, economically disadvantaged, prisoners and neonates (Henry, 2012). This ethical dilemma is based on the Belmont Report on ‘respect for persons and justice,’ which puts two ethical convictions: that individuals need to be dealt with as autonomous agents, and that individuals with diminished autonomy and who require protection have a right to protection.

Self as subject

            This dilemma represents a situation in which the researcher is involved in the research as a subject. This rises ethical concerns over whether the researcher can be objective in analyzing information that directly relates to them or whether they will be biased based on their experiences (Wang, 2016). In the case of self-experimentation, the ethical issues emerging include why the researcher does not want other people to benefit from the research and whether the issue of consent is a matter of concern. This is not directly applicable in my research, given that I am not a subject in the study.

Ethical issues in my study

            In my study, ethical issues that may arise include privacy, where the respondents may want to keep their involvement in the study confidential. To counter this, I will ensure confidentiality is promoted throughout the research (Leew, Hox & Dillman, 2012). I will also give respondents an opportunity to choose between conducting the interview at work or in a different setting. The second ethical issue is informed consent. This concerns the willingness of the respondents to be involved in the research. Before the commencement of the research, I will ensure that the respondents have agreed to participate, by way of signing a consent form.


Henry, D 2012, Human Subjects Research with Vulnerable Populations, Retrieved from

Leew, E. D., Hox, J & Dillman, D. (2012). International Handbook of Survey Methodology European Association of Methodology Series. London:  Routledge.

Quimby, E. (2012). Doing Qualitative Community Research: Lessons for Faculty, Students and the Community. UAE: Bentham Science Publishers.

Wang, S 2016, More Medical Researchers Engage in Self-Experimentation, Retrieved from

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Family background effect on Career choices

Family background effect on Career choices
Family background effect on Career choices

A qualitative research analysis of how family background influences their career choices for the international students at the University

2.0  Rationale of the Project

The issue of accountants’ shortage has been reported in many areas across the globe with countries such as New Zealand, UK., Ireland, Australia, Japan and the USA was reported the greatest impact (Jony Hsiao, 2015).There has also been an occurrence of high profile scandals in businesses such as Worldcom, Parmalat, and the Enron that are outstanding in global economy where there is a predominance of service as well as knowledge.

Such occurrences have triggered a rise in the demand for recruiting highly skilled and experienced accountants who can offer extensive services in auditing. With the introduction of the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley Act, there emerged the Big 4 public accounting corporations along with the public listed organizations that have been craving for the services of qualified auditors, which offers accounting students an opportunity to maximize their advantages in accounting education through obtaining chances for employment as well as evaluate their capabilities in the accounting profession (Yew Ming Chia, 2008).

In recent years, the majority of the students take their courses in accounting in foreign countries where they need funding of greater magnitude but they still have expressed strong desire to study. The family background could be poor therefore posing a challenge to the students who aspire to complete their courses. While western vocational psychology has conventionally focused on the individual’s values and interests in making career choices, it is suggested that social factors such as family background is of vital role to be considered in one’s career development (Fouad et al., 2010).

The shortage of talent accountants therefore is an important forecast that point at the necessity for establishment of programs for training and retention of accountants, especially international students who can acquire the requisite qualities for successfully uplifting satisfaction in the dynamic professional accounting area, thus deduce the job turnover rate and alleviate the declining enrollment trend of accounting systems.

3.0 Preliminary Review of the Literature

The review of literature shall be executed in view of identification of the family background influences on international accounting students’ career choice for their preferred career path. Based on past research in the same filed, some factors that have been identified to have significant contribution include intrinsic as well as extrinsic interests and the perception of intrinsic has been taken more focus.

It shall also be prudent to revisit the previous literature because there is evidence to suggest an inadequacy examination of the impact of family influences and anticipated work-family conflicts in predicting the intentions of the student to choose accounting as a future career. Available information indicates that, earlier investigations focused mainly on evaluation of the perception of the student towards accounting as well as the roles of accountants in attempts of addressing the declining trend of students’ enrolment in accounting programs.

Earl & Bright (2007) conducted an investigation to analyze the relationship that exists between the work outcomes and career decisions. The findings indicated that, the decision of the career graduate was moderated by the extent to which the expectations of the job role were addressed. This decision was also related to the level of job satisfaction. In this regard therefore, the students who made independent decision to take a program in accounting made effective contributions to the organizations where they worked.

When intrinsic value was observed as major influential driver of accounting students, job availability and flexibility in career options ranked relatively high among various career predictions. The extrinsic factors are also mainly based on the size of financial rewards and working environment that associate with job satisfaction (S. Sugahara and G. Boland, 2009).

Research findings also indicate that, the beliefs of the accounting graduates changed soon after they were hired and that the dissonance in the job contributed significantly to job dissatisfaction, thus increasing the tendency for job turnover. This was therefore deemed as a potential explanation to the high rates of job turnover of the newly hired accounting employees in the majority of the accounting firms (Liu, B., Liu, J. and Hu, J., 2010)

Intrinsic interest can generally be explained as individual’s pursuit in enjoyment, creativity and challenge derived from job (S. Sugahara and G. Boland, 2009). An investigation targeted towards Japanese accounting students indicated that the nature of job and the chance to make contributions that compose intrinsic value was a major factor of accounting graduates’ career prospects.

The influence of persons, such as parents, classmates, close friends and business people in workplace, however, was revealed to have a weak impact for accounting students. Similarly, Zauwiyah Ahmad Hishamuddin Ismail R. N. Anantharaman, 2015 has discovered that  internal satisfaction that contained challenging, interesting and exciting was positively linked to accounting students’ career decisions, but social factors were neglected in this investigation.

There are however some researches claiming that family influences within collectivistic cultures are of increasingly significant role in career development especially for those non-White people. Fouad, 2010 discovered that family expectation and information support were the most potential attributes among ethnic groups.

Compared with African American and Whites, Asian American posed to be heavily attached to hard work and achievements on both education and career development. They indicated their path way determined by parents from very early age while their self-attributes failed to be considered, thus leading them to place higher value on prestige and initial salary when making career choices.

It was also found that information support of family was of extensive effect on Korea’s accounting students’ career beliefs and decisions. Family financial support as well as emotional support linked directly to the anticipation of future jobs (S. Kim., T. Ahn and N. Fouad, 2015).

Weer et al. (2006) has also investigated the contribution of anticipated conflict between family and work life in the choice of an accounting career. The majority of the students are keen to analyze the potential conflict or the possibility interference between the family roles and their future job as a career program in accounting. There is evidence that, work-family conflict can exist in the accounting profession.

This relationship has further been extended to have implication on the job turnover as evident in the majority of accounting firms (Aizzat & Khor, 2008). Research highlighted that appropriate work time, active work involvement positively contribute to a responsible family role. Family-related factors such as the number of independent children as well as the family involvement also weigh among work-family conflicts (Aminah , 2008).

Further literature in the career development points out that, most students are likely to change their career in the future as a result of the conflicts (Pasewark and Viator, 2006). Cinamon, (2010) indicated that, such students tend to choose a career that has lower anticipated risks. It is, therefore certain that the students with high anticipated conflict in accounting as their future career shall have lower intentions to pursue a program in accountancy.

, classmates, close friends and business people in workplace,

4.0 Research objectives and questions

4.1 research objectives

  1. To determine whether or not family background influence the career choices
  2. To establish whether or not classmates and friends influence career choices of international students.
  3. To determine whether career choices by people influence career choices of international respective?

4.2 Research Questions

  1. Does family background influence career choices of international students?
  2. Do classmates and friends influence career choices of international students?
  3. Do career choices by people influence career choices of international respective?

4.3 Hypothesis

1: H0 There is not any single association between family background and career choices

2: H1 There is a direct association i.e. single association between family background and career choices

3: H0 There is not direct relationship between family member persuasion and professional option

4: HThere is a direct relationship between family member persuasion and profession        option

5= H0 Career choices by people do not influence career choices of international students

6= H1 Career choices by people influence career options of international students  

5.0 Research Plan

5.1 Research Design

Positivism research design complies with the standpoint that factual knowledge can be collected through measurement (Muijs, 2011). In a positivist project, the researcher is in charge of data collection as well as interpretation in an objective manner and the collected data is quantified. Owing to the fact that this is quantitative project will adopt positivist paradigm to increase understanding of how family background influences career choice of international students in the University. In this case, the paradigm will allow the researcher to draw knowledge from positive data because it is easier to present numerical evidence of each rationally justified allegation (Collis & Hussey, 2013).

In addition, the reality of incidents is not connected to what is being explored; therefore, positivism design allows researchers to build knowledge of a reality beyond individual intelligence (Muijs, 2011). Based on this fact, a quantitative researcher creates hypothesis from existing theory and use suitable statistical tests, to determine if the finding is in line with theory or theoretical framework. Ultimately, the hypothesis is either accepted or rejected.

5.2 Data collection

This study will use questionnaires to collect primary information. In a quantitative research project, the aim of the researcher is to assess mathematical or statistical analysis of the collected information (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill 2012). In addition, the researcher purposes to make general views of the entire population. This means that quantitative research places emphasis on gathering mathematical data and generalize it to the whole population to explain an occurrence (Bryman, 2016). 

For that reason, questionnaires will present detailed information on how family background influences career choice of international students in the University. Primary information is also suitable for this study when it comes to recognizing different family backgrounds of an international student. Again, primary information will offer useful insights important in understanding the link within data.   

The questionnaire is an appropriate data collection technique in this study because I will allow the research to collect detailed information from international students on how family background affects their career choices in short period (Leedy & Ormrod, 2014). Much as the questionnaire is cost-effective, it will suitable for this project since it will enable the researcher to gather international students’ views with limited impact on reliability and viability. 

Moreover, the questionnaire is fit for this study since it results can be quantified easily and quick with the help of software like SPSS.  Compared to other data collection methods, questionnaires can be analyzed objectively and such information is vital in developing not just theories but also testing hypotheses.

5.3 Data Analysis

While there are several programs applicable in data analysis, the SPSS application will be used in this study. SPSS is the most suitable application for the study because it’s comprehensive, flexible and generates tabulated graphics, distribution trends as well as complex data analysis. Again, the SPSS software is user-friendly and intuitive for all users. There is quite a number of tests that may be employed to evaluate data, however, the selection of test is informed by the data collected and what we intend to achieve in the first place (Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill, 2012).                                                                                      

The t-test, for instance, is employed to determine whether the means of two clusters are different from each other statistically. So this type is pertinent for means in two clusters. When determining the relationship between two variables, the Pearson’s correlation is the best approach. The analysis of variance, on the other hand, is important when comparing the association between a number of groups.

5.4 Limitations

According to Saunders, Lewis & Thornhill (2012), the research method works as the backbone of the study. Its central purpose, however, is the enumeration of statistics. It enables the broad view of the outcomes by determining the conceptions and feedbacks of the sample populace. However, the improper representation of the target populace is a major drawback for this approach.

This prevents the researcher from realizing its expected purposes and objectives. Regardless of a suitable sampling schedule, the representation of subjects relies on the possibility of observed statistics. This often culminates into the misrepresentation of the proposition. Nonetheless, a large sample size is often needed in for quantitative research methodology, and yet, owing to minimal resources, the broad-based research becomes a mirage (Collis & Hussey, 2013).                                                                 

The researcher is also unable to control the environment because feedbacks to the question are provided by respondents. In addition, because of the closed nature of questions in a quantitative study, it restricts the outcomes of a research, as such; the outcomes may not necessarily represent the reality of the ground. To ensure a far-reaching randomization and correct description of control groups, considerable time is needed. Furthermore, the process is capital intensive. In the end, data analysis may be so complex to realize especially when the researcher does not have a background in statistics.

6.0 Ethical Considerations

The consideration of ethical issues in a quantitative research, where human beings are involved is essential. Previously, various studies have caused a mental and physical impact on respondents an issue that necessitates the moral consideration. For instance, the researcher is required not just to obtain informed consent from respondents but also inform respondents about the dangers and advantages that come with the study (Creswell, 2014).

Moreover, confidentiality of respondents should be guaranteed with regards to disclosing values, beliefs, and characters. The confidentiality implies that the researcher will not be required to collect and record data in stealth mode. Again, the researcher should not falsify information; in any case, the researcher should ensure that the collected information is as accurate as possible. In this respect, the use of fictitious respondents is not only unethical but defeats the very purpose of research.


Aizzat, M.N. and Khor, L.H. (2008), “The influence of support at work and home on work-family conflict: does gender make a difference?” Research and Practice in Human Resource Management, Vol. 16 No. 1, pp. 18-30.

Bryman A. 2016. Social research methods. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Cinamon, R.G. (2010), “Anticipated work-family conflict: effects of role salience and self-efficacy”, British Journal of Guidance and Counselling, Vol. 38 No. 1, pp. 83-94.

Collis, J. & Hussey, R. (2013) Business Research: A Practical Guide for Undergraduate and Postgraduate Students. 4th ed. London: Palgrave-MacMillan.

Creswell, J. W. 2014. Research Design Qualitative, Quantitative, and Mixed Methods Approaches (4th ed., p. 304). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.

Earl, J.K. and Bright, J.E.H. (2007), “The relationship between career decision status and important work outcomes”, Journal of Vocational Behaviour, Vol. 71 No. 2, pp. 233-46.

Leedy, P. D., & Ormrod, J. E. 2014. Practical research: Planning and design (10th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Liu, B., Liu, J. and Hu, J. (2010), “Person-organization fit, job satisfaction, and turnover   intention: an empirical study in the Chinese public sector”, Social Behaviour and Personality, Vol. 38 No. 5, pp. 615-26.

Muijs D. 2011. Doing quantitative research in education with SPSS. Los Angeles, [Calif.]: SAGE.

Pasewark, W.R. & Viator, R.E., (2006), “Sources of work-family conflict in the accounting profession”,Behavioral Research in Accounting, Vol. 18 No. 1, pp. 147-165.

Saunders, M., Lewis, P. & Thornhill, A. (2012) Research Methods for Business Students, 6th ed. Pearson Learning Solutions

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