PBH1101 - Introduction to qualitative research - 2018

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine

Chief examiner(s)




Not offered in 2018




This unit introduces students to qualitative research methods and why, when and how they are used in health research. The unit will develop students' understanding of both the theoretical underpinnings of qualitative research and the practical skills in research design using qualitative methods. In developing these skills students will learn about sampling, qualitative data collection and qualitative data analysis techniques and mixed methods designs in the arenas of clinical health service delivery, public health and health policy. The cultural, ethical and political contexts within which research takes place will be discussed to highlight that research takes place in the real world, which both enables and constrains research design and practice.


On successful completion of this unit students will:

  1. Develop a researchable question requiring a qualitative research design.
  2. Discuss the options and constraints associated with different types of mixed methods research design.
  3. Select sampling strategies appropriate to answering a posed researchable question.
  4. Describe and appropriately use qualitative data collection methods in qualitative research.
  5. Describe and use the appropriate tools for analysis of qualitative data.
  6. Choose appropriate strategies for designing, implementing and evaluating qualitative research accounting for ethical and cultural sensitivities.


  • Flipped tutorial activity (10%)
  • Literature review (1,500 words) (25%)
  • Research design protocol (1,500 words) (25%)
  • Examination (MCQs and short answer questions) (2 hours) (40%) Hurdle

Hurdle requirement:

80% attendance at tutorials

80% participation in online tasks

Workload requirements

1 hour lecture, 2 hour tutorial, 3 hours of directed online student learning activities, plus 6 hours of self-directed study per week.

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study