• Doing mental health research with children and adolescents: A guide to qualitative methods.

      O'Reilly, Michelle; Parker, Nicola; University of Chester; Leicester University (Sage, 2014-07-07)
      Researching child and adolescent mental health can be a daunting task, but with the right practical skills and knowledge your students can transform the way they work with children and young people, giving them a ‘voice’ through their research in the wider community. Michelle O'Reilly and Nikki Parker combine their clinical, academic and research expertise to take your students step-by-step through each stage of the research process. From first inception to data collection and dissemination, they’ll guide them through the key issues faced when undertaking their research, highlighting the dilemmas, challenges and debates, and exploring the important questions asked when doing research with this population. Providing practical advice and strategies for dealing with the reality of conducting research in practice, this book will; - Provide your students with an overview of the theories that underpin methodological choice and the value of using qualitative research. - Guide them through the planning stage of your project, clearly outlining important ethical and legal issues. - Take them through the most popular qualitative data collection techniques and support them with their analysis. - Help them write up their findings and demonstrate how research evidence translates into effective clinical practice. Supported by helpful hints and tips, case examples and definitions of key terms, this highly practical and accessible guide throws a lifebelt to any students or mental health practitioner learning about the research process for the first time.
    • Ethics in Praxis: Negotiating the Role and Functions of a Video Camera in family therapy

      Hutchby, Ian; O'Reilly, Michelle; Parker, Nicola; University of Leicester (Sage, 2012-12-01)
      The use of video for research purposes is something that has attracted ethical attention and debate. While the usefulness of video as a mechanism to collect data is widely agreed, the ethical sensitivity and impact of recording equipment is more contentious. In some clinical settings the presence of a camera has a dual role, as a portal to a reflecting team and as a recording device to obtain research data. Using data from one such setting, family therapy sessions, this article shows how the role played by recording equipment is negotiated in the course of talk and other activities that constitute sessions. Analysis reveals that members of the therapy interaction orient in different ways and for different purposes to the value of recordings. The article concludes that there are layers of benefit to be derived from recording of clinical interactions, including for members themselves, and this has wider implications for the ways in which qualitative research designs in health sciences are evaluated.
    • ‘Gossiping' as a social action in family therapy: The pseudo-absence and pseudo-presence of children

      Parker, Nicola; O'Reilly, Michelle; Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust; University of Leicester (Sage, 2012-08-01)
      Family therapists face a number of challenges in their work. When children are present in family therapy they can and do make fleeting contributions. We draw upon naturally occurring family therapy sessions to explore the ‘pseudo-presence’ and ‘pseudo-absence’ of children and the institutional ‘gossiping’ quality these interactions have. Our findings illustrate that a core characteristic of gossiping is its functional role in building alignments’ which in this institutional context is utilized as a way of managing accountability. Our findings have a number of implications for clinical professionals and highlight the value of discourse and conversation analysis techniques for exploring therapeutic interactions.
    • Ongoing processes of managing consent: the empirical ethics of using video-recording in clinical practice and research

      O'Reilly, Michelle; Parker, Nicola; Hutchby, Ian; University of Leicester (Sage, 2011-12-05)
      Using video to facilitate data collection has become increasingly common in health research. Using video in research, however, does raise additional ethical concerns. In this paper we utilise family therapy data to provide empirical evidence of how recording equipment is treated. We show that families made a distinction between what was observed through the video by the reflecting team and what was being recorded onto videotape. We show that all parties actively negotiated what should and should not go ‘on the record’ with particular attention to sensitive topics and the responsibility of the therapist. Our findings have important implications for both clinical professionals and researchers using video data. We maintain that informed consent should be an ongoing process and with this in mind we present some arguments pertaining to the current debates in this field of health care practice.
    • Reflections from behind the screen: avoiding therapeutic rupture when utilising reflecting teams

      Parker, Nicola; O'Reilly, Michelle; University of Chester; University of Leicester (Sage, 2013-03-06)
      Since Tom Andersen developed the use of reflecting teams to facilitate the progress and process of family therapy, little empirical evidence has emerged regarding their effectiveness or use in therapeutic practice. Reflecting teams are typically embraced by family therapists as a positive mechanism for enhancing practice and thus it is important that research explores how they are utilized. In this article, we draw upon videotaped data of naturally occurring family therapy from the United Kingdom. Using conversation analysis, we identified three performative actions related to interrupting the therapeutic conversation to consult with a reflecting team. We found that therapists had difficulty exiting therapy, that on some occasions exit was hindered, and that there were disturbances in feeding back the reflections of the team. By examining the use of teams in real practice, we were able to make a number of recommendations for practicing family therapists to facilitate the use of this valuable resource.
    • ‘She needs a smack in the gob’: negotiating what is appropriate talk in front of children in family therapy

      O'Reilly, Michelle; Parker, Nicola; University of Leicester; Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust Spring Road Centre (Wiley, 2012-06-11)
      Tackling the day-to-day challenges of family therapy can prove difficult for professionals. A particular issue arising in family therapy is the notion of what is appropriate for children. Families report events from their social world, out-there to the therapy in-here. There are occasions where the content is ‘adult’ in nature and this has to be managed in front of the children. On some occasions family members use derogatory or negative descriptions of their children while their children are present. Drawing upon naturally occurring family therapy sessions, we present a discourse analysis of how this is managed through a range of discursive resources. We show that adult family members construct what is inappropriate for children to be exposed to by positioning blame with others. This has implications for how family therapists deal with inappropriateness when children are present while maintaining the equilibrium of therapeutic alliances.
    • 'Unsatisfactory Saturation': A critical exploration of the notion of saturated sample sizes in qualtative research

      O'Reilly, Michelle; Parker, Nicola; University of Leicester; Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust, UK (Sage, 2012-05-17)
      Measuring quality in qualitative research is a contentious issue with diverse opinions and various frameworks available within the evidence base. One important and somewhat neglected argument within this field relates to the increasingly ubiquitous discourse of data saturation. While originally developed within grounded theory, theoretical saturation, and later termed data/thematic saturation for other qualitative methods, the meaning has evolved and become transformed. Problematically this temporal drift has been treated as unproblematic and saturation as a marker for sampling adequacy is becoming increasingly accepted and expected. In this article we challenge the unquestioned acceptance of the concept of saturation and consider its plausibility and transferability across all qualitative approaches. By considering issues of transparency and epistemology we argue that adopting saturation as a generic quality marker is inappropriate. The aim of this article is to highlight the pertinent issues and encourage the research community to engage with and contribute to this important area.