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Pivoting to online focus groups: an evaluation of general practitioner training in Wales

Cserzo, Dorottya ORCID: 2022. Pivoting to online focus groups: an evaluation of general practitioner training in Wales. SAGE Research Methods: Doing Research Online, SAGE. 10.4135/9781529799040

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This case study discusses an evaluation of the general practitioner (GP) training program in Wales. The original research design included face-to-face focus groups with GP trainees in order to explore their experiences of the program. These plans had to be rapidly adapted for remote data collection under the social restrictions introduced in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The research team decided to use videoconferencing to conduct the focus groups, decreasing the target group size from eight to 12 participants to a maximum of six participants per group. The research team had experience in conducting face-to-face but not remote focus groups at the start of the project. This case study discusses the main challenges we encountered and provides recommendations for researchers new to video-mediated focus groups. I examine the role of gatekeepers and the structure of the focus group discussion. I highlight the ethical, legal, and practical considerations that need to be taken into account for choosing appropriate tools (i.e., videoconferencing platforms, recording tools, transcription tools, and online data storage). I reflect on the unexpected issues we faced in the first round of data collection (December 2020 and January 2021) and identify strategies for building flexibility into the research design.

Item Type: Book
Book Type: Authored Book
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Cardiff Unit for Research and Evaluation in Medical and Dental Education (CUREMeDE)
Additional Information: SAGE Research Methods Cases
Publisher: SAGE
ISBN: 9781529799040
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 21 March 2022
Date of Acceptance: 17 August 2021
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2023 01:06

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