Four Qualitative Methods for Understanding Diverse Lives (for academics)



Organised by:

NCRM, University of Southampton


Dr Amy Barron


Entry (no or almost no prior knowledge)


Jacqui Thorp
Training and Capacity Building Coordinator, National Centre for Research Methods, University of Southampton

video conference logo

Venue: Online


In this one-day online training workshop you will be introduced to four qualitative research methods to better understand diverse lives - Photo Go-Alongs, Collage, Life History Interviews and Participant Packs. When researching social groups, researchers may focus on categories such as age, gender, sexuality and so on. These categories can turn catch-all terms into catch-all agendas. Treating groups of people with one shared characteristic as homogenous risks a cookie-cutter approach which overlooks diverse lives and needs. Given the complexity of what it means to be a person, a one-size fits all approach to engagement cannot suffice. The methods introduced in this training workshop are beneficial in exploring diverse lives and can be used when researching with any group. 

The session is aimed at PhD students and academics of all career stages across the UK who want to better understand: 

  • The specific place-based needs of people 

  • The everyday practices of people

  • The world from participants’ perspectives

  • How to work with people in an inclusive and accessible way

This online training workshop will be structured as follows:  

  • Introductions

  • Origins and Approach 

  • Methods deep dive: 

  • Photo Go-Alongs

  • Participant packs

  • Collage 

  • Life Histories 

  • Workshops 

  • Learnings and close 

By the end of the course participants will:

  • Be able to think critically about how creative, participatory methods might be incorporated into their research and/ or teaching. 

  • Have broadened their understanding of research methods from tools of data collection to techniques for capacity building.

  • Have workshopped four qualitative methods for creatively engaging with people (Photo Go-Alongs, Collage, Life Histories and Participant packs).

This online training workshop will take place over the course of 1 day on Wednesday 11th December between 10:00 and 16:00, with 1 hour for lunch between 12:30 and 13:30. 


The fee per teaching day is: • £35 per day for registered students • £75 per day for staff at academic institutions, Research Councils researchers, public sector staff, staff at registered charity organisations and recognised research institutions. • £250 per day for all other participants In the event of cancellation by the delegate a full refund of the course fee is available up to two weeks prior to the course. No refunds are available after this date. If it is no longer possible to run a course due to circumstances beyond its control, NCRM reserves the right to cancel the course at its sole discretion at any time prior to the event. In this event every effort will be made to reschedule the course. If this is not possible or the new date is inconvenient a full refund of the course fee will be given. NCRM shall not be liable for any costs, losses or expenses that may be incurred as a result of the cancellation of a course. The University of Southampton’s Online Store T&Cs also continue to apply.

Website and registration:


South East


Qualitative Data Handling and Data Analysis, Frameworks for Research and Research Designs, Inclusive research, User engagement, Collage, Life-History Interviews, Photo Go-Alongs, Participant Packs, Arts-based methods, Alternative methods of dissemination

Related publications and presentations:

Qualitative Data Handling and Data Analysis

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