Subjective ≠ invalid: Insights into a qualitative-explorative case study


  • Nora Benitt


Researchers of different fields of study have been debating advantages and disadvantages of qualitative and quantitative research designs for decades. However, many terms used in connection with research, such as objectivity, representativeness, validity and reliability, rather relate to quantitative than to qualitative research. Thus, what are quality criteria of qualitative research? In my paper, I would like to present insights into a qualitative-explorative case study, which was conducted within a blended-learning teacher education programme in Germany. Twelve student teachers have been observed and queried over a period of two years. The study focussed on their perceived professional development through engaging in action research, i.e. the critical and systematic investigation of their own teaching. Numerous studies have shown that action research greatly helps in-service teachers understand the connection between theoretical concepts and their daily teaching practice. However, the systematic integration of action research into pre-service language teacher education is a fairly innovative approach and has not yet been researched. The insights gained from the case study at hand are neither objective nor representative. Nonetheless, they can make a valid contribution to research as the findings are relevant for different fields of education and transferable to various contexts.


How to Cite

Benitt, N. (2015). Subjective ≠ invalid: Insights into a qualitative-explorative case study. Humanity. Retrieved from