While, I still don’t see a benefit to relying upon quantitative studies to the exclusion of all others when complex conversations, action research, and asset-based community development yield so much more nuance into a study, I do see the benefits of employing some quantitative methods to determine a direction for a qualitative study, but I’ll never see it as an exclusive fix. Quantitative data is too dry and cold for me, and effecting real change in my world is going to necessitate qualitative research and activism.
Rashid, et al (2005) account for socioeconomic status but there is no mention of cultural barriers. While not the case in every family, I experienced books as something that was not exactly encouraged (I obviously disobeyed.). I expect there are other cultures and children that have experienced this, but the authors don’t account for this. Given that the parameters of this study didn’t exist prior to this, the study is obviously overdue and welcomed. The authors utilized only a cross-section of 65 children, a majority of boys, and Black American children. This skews the results and excludes most other political minorities and, therefore, does not provide adequate results that can be utilized except for a more extensive study. As a result, I suspect, only a minority of the respondents were read to multiple times each week. The results were also not conclusive and there is no consensus regarding how best to measure home literacy environment. Given all of these flaws and the skewed cross section of ethnicities, it’s very clear to me that the authors should have increased the diversity in the numbers, respondents, genders, and they most definitely should have utilized some qualitative research to incorporate some nuance into their understanding of the topic and the results.
Zelinski, et al, employ multiple measures to gauge the happiness of employees which varies from previous studies. Additionally, the authors found it difficult to compare the results of previous studies due to the differing means of measuring happiness based upon work and/or home life so their results differed in that respect, though to their benefit, they utilized a cross section of measurement tools to determine happiness from several perspectives. However, the study recipients were all Director-level who reported to a VP level. There were also no hourly employees, no service sector employees, though the authors admit that the results are specific to Canadian Directors only so there is also an opportunity to expand the research beyond the Director level. Additionally, it would be beneficial to expand the study to European countries with a daily traditional siesta that includes a two-hour break for dinner in the middle of the day where participants return home to family and a nap before returning to work. Since expanding the study beyond Director-level would increase the study beyond anything manageable that may not be practical.
Locke, L. F., Silverman, S. J., & Spirduso, W. W. (2010). Chapters 6, 7, 8, 9. In Reading and understanding research (3rd ed., pp. 158-279). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Rashid, F. L., Morris, R. D., & Sevcik, R. A. (2005). Relationship between home literacy environment and reading achievement in children with reading disabilities. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 38(1), 2-11.
Zelenski, J. M., Murphy, S. A., & Jenkins, D. A. (2008). The happy-productive worker thesis revisited. Journal of Happiness Studies, 9(4), 521-537.