Starting with focus group research method

Starting with focus group research method, involves group of people interested in a ways people as members of group discuss issues rather than individuals as well as focus on how people respond to each other’s views during the interaction with certain characteristics generate narrative data in a focused discussion exploring potentially sensitive topic, further defined as “a form of group interview in which ; there are several participants in addition to the moderator and facilitator in which there is an emphasis in the questioning on particular fairly tightly defined topic and the accent is upon interaction with the group and the joint construction of meaning” (Bryman,2001).An interview or discussion is carried out by an expert moderator in a natural manner with a small group of respondents, this type of method is very common method particularly in conducting marketing research. Focus group combines group interview as normal interview and focussed interview which involves interviewees selected because they are known to have been involved in a certain situation.”The goal of focus groups is to create conversation that allows participants to explore a topic in depth”. (J.A.Hatch,2002,p.132). Interaction and group dynamics are essential to provide widens range of responses with common experience, activates forgotten details, releases inhibitions by making individual feel comfortable while explaining their experience. Emphasize specific theme-explored in depth and not carried out as a way of saving time since most participants are likely to engage in long topic discussion to gain understanding through sharing and comparing with the rest of the group based on their experience hence consuming time.
Focus group method is applied to people who have same experience or are in the same situation especially in media and cultural studies-audience reception example; research on nationwide television programme presented different groups of people comprised of managers, students ,trades and unionists , had different views on the programmes being shown based on their perceptions and interpretations of what was being presented. (Morely,1980) . To understand why people feels the way they do, allows people to probe each other’s reasons for holdings views, individuals may modify or qualify views after listening to others whereby moderator has to relinquish some of his/her control .This allows interviewees’ views to be challenged by other interviewees, argument produces more realistic accounts as a mutual challenge
Design focus group studies and methodology requires as many as are needed to get a range of views with theoretical saturation (ground theory) when no more variation in views is detected. Comprising of 5 to 10 participants per group so as everyone can have time to participate with number of questions, very few commonly 5or 6 ,sometimes only 2 the fewer the better or 3 to 5 groups per strata to ensure some of each type of respondent, smaller group is better in general so long as small group dynamics each person will say more but forsake of wide range contributions big groups is better though kind expensive to implement .Selection of participants depends on random selection or snow ball methods otherwise those likely to have similar experience or views issues being investigated. But mostly a group of strangers or natural groups having something in common is preferred such as co-workers, friends are very commonly used since those who know each other may operation be taken for granted assumptions, not obvious to facilitator. “Interaction is a key characteristic of focus groups, the idea of individuals assists each other to explore and clarify their point of view, referred as the group effect or groupthink” ( Pranee Liamputtong,2011). Be aware of participants limit time, attentions, language, cultural issues and communication skills to engage in discussion as one of the tasks of the moderator .