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Assessing the effectiveness of online focus groups versus in-person focus groups

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Date Issued:
2018
Abstract/Description:
Increasingly researchers are turning to online focus groups as a qualitative research method, yet rigorous methodological studies regarding the quantity, quality and diversity of the data generated relative to traditional in-person focus groups are limited. This study experimentally tests the idea generation capabilities of online text-based focus groups versus traditional in-person focus groups using sustainability in the hospitality industry as the idea generation topic. Participants were purposively sampled from the hospitality program at a large Southeastern university and randomly assigned into one of two treatment groups: online text-based or traditional in-person focus groups. The in-person focus groups resulted in a larger word count, and a higher number of ideas generated, although both in-person and online generated an equivalent number of unique ideas. The online focus group generated a comparable average quality of ideas and number of good ideas. There was a high degree of overlap in themes generated by both groups. The results show that online focus groups are capable of generating a comparable level of idea quantity, quality and diversity relative to in-person focus groups.
Title: Assessing the effectiveness of online focus groups versus in-person focus groups.
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Name(s): Richard, Brendan, Author
Sivo, Stephen, Committee Chair
Boote, David, Committee Member
Witta, Eleanor, Committee Member
Ford, Robert, Committee Member
Murphy, Jamie, Committee Member
University of Central Florida, Degree Grantor
Type of Resource: text
Date Issued: 2018
Publisher: University of Central Florida
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Increasingly researchers are turning to online focus groups as a qualitative research method, yet rigorous methodological studies regarding the quantity, quality and diversity of the data generated relative to traditional in-person focus groups are limited. This study experimentally tests the idea generation capabilities of online text-based focus groups versus traditional in-person focus groups using sustainability in the hospitality industry as the idea generation topic. Participants were purposively sampled from the hospitality program at a large Southeastern university and randomly assigned into one of two treatment groups: online text-based or traditional in-person focus groups. The in-person focus groups resulted in a larger word count, and a higher number of ideas generated, although both in-person and online generated an equivalent number of unique ideas. The online focus group generated a comparable average quality of ideas and number of good ideas. There was a high degree of overlap in themes generated by both groups. The results show that online focus groups are capable of generating a comparable level of idea quantity, quality and diversity relative to in-person focus groups.
Identifier: CFE0007086 (IID), ucf:51945 (fedora)
Note(s): 2018-05-01
Ph.D.
Education and Human Performance, Dean's Office EDUC
Doctoral
This record was generated from author submitted information.
Subject(s): focus groups -- online focus groups -- idea generation -- qualitative methods -- multi-level analysis -- crowdsourcing -- sustainability -- tourism -- hospitality
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/ucf/fd/CFE0007086
Restrictions on Access: campus 2021-05-15
Host Institution: UCF

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