Join us at ResearchTalk’s Qualitative Data Collection Camp

October 23-26, 2017, Carrboro, NC

This event is now over. Please check our Upcoming Events page for future events.



The main goal of the Qualitative Data Collection Camp is to position you to develop an active and engaged posture toward data collection.  To accomplish this goal, we will emphasize strategies to employ a posture of openness, flexibility, and responsiveness in our data collection practices.

Course content will direct interaction with four qualitative data collection strategies:

  1. Interviews
  2. Focus Groups
  3. Observation
  4. Online data collection

Ten data engagement strategies, listed here, will direct our course content and provide you with a checklist and action plan for your fieldwork:

Understanding Aligning
Following Preparing
Shifting/adjusting  Opening
Closing Asking
Processing Contextualizing


  • Understanding:  How well do you understand the topic of and audience for your project?   Are you familiar with the properties, dimensions, and dynamics of your topic and how further work in your field will affect audiences for your work?
  • Aligning: How do your data collection strategies and the questions in your interview/focus group guide assist you in achieving project goals?
  • Preparing: Who are your participants?  How does knowledge of the participants inform your data collection format and approach? How do you foster a sense of ownership for participants in the data collection experience?
  • Opening: What are ways to open the interaction and conversation appropriately and comfortably?
  • Asking: What do you ask participants when and why? What questions open conversation topics? When and how do you probe and ask for further detail and example? What do you note from the field? How do you develop your observation skills?
  • Following:  How do you maintain a proper posture to discover, but not unduly influence, your participants’ experiences? How do you manage the conversation and observation in a way that allows you to follow your participants’ unfolding narratives while keeping them interested and involved in their own story telling?
  • Shifting/adjusting: When and why do you make adjustments to data collection protocols and interview or focus group approaches? How can you shift your approach, language, and direction on the spot as you listen to and observe people’s unfolding narratives?
  • Closing: How can you naturally and affirmatively reach the conclusion of each data collection episode?
  • Processing: How do you track and understand the evolution of your interview/focus group guide and data collection protocols to process the meanings these changes have for your project?
  • Contextualizing:  How do considerations of ethical, political, and social implications related to your study, your participants, and the communities in which your study is located guide and direct your practices and what you present?

Employing these strategies through the life of your project will enhance the quality of the data you collect.  This practice will also help you to understand how the conversations and interactions occurring during data collection fit what is currently known about, and practiced in, your field.


Alison Hamilton

Alison B. Hamilton, Ph.D., M.P.H., a Research Anthropologist in the UCLA Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, received her Ph.D. in medical and psychological anthropology from UCLA in 2002, and her M.P.H. in Community Health Sciences from UCLA in 2009.

Dr. Hamilton is the Director of the VA-funded EMPOWER (Enhancing Mental and Physical Health of Women through Engagement and Retention) Quality Enhancement Research Initiative (QUERI), focused on improving women Veterans’ health and health care through implementation science. She is Associate Director for Implementation Science and Director of the Qualitative Methods Group at the VA Health Services Research and Development (HSR&D) Center for the Study of Healthcare Innovation, Implementation and Policy, specializing in women Veterans’ health, mental health services research, and implementation science. She was a fellow in the inaugural cohort of the NIMH/VA Implementation Research Institute and she serves on the editorial boards of Implementation Science and Women’s Health Issues. She currently leads two HSR&D-funded women’s health studies, including a four-year mixed methods study of women Veterans’ attrition from VA healthcare use and a multisite study of improving multilevel stakeholder engagement in women’s health services research.

Dr. Hamilton has been a consultant with ResearchTalk for over 18 years, providing direct support to clients as well as serving as faculty for several of the Qualitative Research Summer Intensives and mentor at ResearchTalk’s Qualitative Data Analysis Camps. At recent Intensives, she taught courses on qualitative methods in implementation research, rapid qualitative research methods, qualitative grant-writing, qualitative interviewing, mixed methods research, and enhancing the usefulness of qualitative research. Dr. Hamilton is a co-author on Dr. Ray Maietta’s Sort and Sift, Think and Shift forthcoming publication.

Ray Maietta

Raymond C. Maietta, Ph.D. is president of ResearchTalk Inc., a qualitative research consulting company based in Long Island, New York and Cary, North Carolina. A Ph.D. sociologist from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, with postdoctoral training at Indiana University, Ray’s interests in the art of qualitative research methods motivated him to start ResearchTalk in 1996. ResearchTalk Inc. provides project consultation and co-analysis services on all phases of qualitative analysis to university, government, not-for-profit, and corporate researchers.

More than 20 years of consultation with qualitative researchers informs Dr. Maietta’s publications and a current methods book he is writing:

  • “Systematic Procedures of Inquiry and Computer Data Analysis Software for Qualitative Research,” co-authored with John Creswell, in Handbook of Research Design and Social Measurement (Sage Publications, 2002)
  • “State of the Art: Integrating Software with Qualitative Analysis” in Applying Qualitative and Mixed Methods in Aging and Public Health Research, edited by Leslie Curry, Renee Shield, and Terrie Wetle (American Public Health Association and the Gerontological Society of America, 2006).
  • “The Use of Photography As a Qualitative Research Method” in Visualizing Social Science, edited by Judith Tanur (Social Science Research Council, 2008).
  • “Qualitative Software” in the Sage Encyclopedia of Qualitative Research Methods, edited by Lisa Given (Sage Publications, 2008).
  • “Integrating Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis with MAXQDA” in Journal of Mixed Methods (Sage Publications, April 2008)
  • “The Symbolic Value and Limitations of Racial Concordance in Minority Research Engagement”, co-authored with Craig S. Fryer, Susan R. Passmore, et al., in Qualitative Health Research, March 13, 2015 (Sage Publications)
  • Sort and Sift, Think and Shift, (Guilford Press) in progress.

Ray’s work invites interactions with researchers from a range of disciplinary backgrounds. He is an active participant at conferences around the country including invited presentations at American Evaluation Association, American Anthropological Association, and American Sociological Association.

Kevin Swartout

Kevin Swartout is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology with a secondary appointment in the School Public Health at Georgia State University in Atlanta, GA. He earned his Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. His research focuses on violence and aggression, specifically how it relates to social influences and substance use, as well as trajectories of violent behavior and victimization across time. He has received early-career awards from the International Society for Research on Aggression, Southeastern Psychological Association, and Georgia State University. Dr. Swartout has published several peer-reviewed research articles and frequently speaks at national and international conferences. He has been a qualitative research consultant with ResearchTalk Inc. for nine years. In this capacity, he has regularly taught short courses on qualitative and mixed methods research as well as qualitative data analysis software. Dr. Swartout frequently serves as a scholar at ResearchTalk’s Qualitative Research Summer Intensive and as a mentor at ResearchTalk’s Qualitative Data Analysis Camps and he is also a co-author on Dr. Ray Maietta’s Sort and Sift, Think and Shift forthcoming publication.

SCHEDULE (click):
Daily Schedule

Monday, October 23
9:00 am – 4:00 pm: Camp sessions

Tuesday, October 24
9:00 am – 4:00 pm: Camp sessions
6:00 pm – 9:00 pm: Group dinner (this dinner is included in the registration fee)

Wednesday, October 25
9:00 am – 4:00 pm: Camp sessions

Thursday, October 26
9:30 am – 12:30 pm: Camp sessions



Click HERE to register online.

Early Registration

  • Early Registration ends Thursday September 28, 2017
  • Early Registration Fee = $ 825.00

Standard Registration

  • Standard Registration ends Tuesday October 10, 2017
  • Standard Registration Fee = $ 975.00

*Single day attendance not accommodated

Student Discount

  • 15% Discount for Students – use Discount Code “RT-Student15”
    Student discount cannot be combined with any other discount offers

Registration Notes

  • All payments should be made to “ResearchTalk.”
  • Seats for courses are not officially held until payment is received in full.
  • If full payment is not received the day before courses begin, your registration will be canceled and you will not be able to attend courses.

Arrival and Departure Times

  • The opening session for the Qualitative Data Collection Camp begins at 9:00 am on Monday, October 23, 2017
  • The Qualitative Data Analysis Camp ends at 12:30 pm on Thursday, October 26, 2017

Nearest Airport

  • Raleigh Durham Airport (Airport Code: RDU)

Venue and Accommodations

Hampton Inn & Suites Chapel Hill-Carrboro/Downtown
370 East Main Street, Unit 100
Carrboro, North Carolina 27510
Phone Number: 919-969-6988

Website for Hotel Reservations:

    • The ResearchTalk rate is $ 124 per night plus tax.
    • The ResearchTalk room rate will be available until September 25, 2017, or until the group block is sold-out, whichever comes first.


Click HERE to register online.