Chapter 8: Focus Groups

For a video of a focus group with students, by Tony Wagner, visit:

This podcast offers an account of how focus groups are used in market research:

For a short video of a commercial focus group by Roy Cineus, go to:

To read Risco et al.’s (2016) dementia study, go to:

For a talk by James Woodall on thematic analysis of focus group data, go to:

Hannah Frith reviews what we can learn from how people interact in focus groups through a review of studies of sex and gender:

Halkier’s paper argues that there is a need for more attention to how we analyse focus group data. It is suggested that focus group data (like other types of qualitative data) are under­stood as social interactions. It shows how we can analyse focus groups as interactions using four different but related methodological tools of analysis:

  • Goffman-inspired interaction analysis
  • conversation analysis
  • discourse psychology
  • positioning theory.

The discussion is illustrated by focus group data-material from a study on how Danish women cook and relate to normative issues in cooking (Halkier, 2010):