About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 188-191
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-615-0441-1
ISSN: 2340-1117

Conference name: 3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2011
Location: Barcelona, Spain

NARRATIVE METHODOLOGY: WHERE DID WE COME FROM AND WHERE ARE WE NOW?

S. Buydens

University of Victoria (CANADA)
Narrative inquiry has become a common research methodology used in education and counselling. Due to growing popularity and the acceptance of narrative forms of inquiry in mainstream research, students and researchers are forgetting how narrative methodology emerged and how its development has shaped contemporary theory. To better understand the contemporary position of narrative inquiry, where methodological tools originated and how the field has shifted from its origins, it is necessary to look back on history to re-inform ourselves of the story where narrative inquiry came from so we can understand our current story in more detail.
What is Narrative Inquiry
Narrative inquiry is an in-depth process of studying whole persons in a social context and time (Josselson, Lieblich, & McAdams, 2003). Narratives are social by nature, reflecting broad ideological, social, historical, and cultural conditions (Young & Collin, 2004). Narrative is a process of meaning making that encompasses three spheres of inquiry: scientific or physical, human experience, and metaphysical (Hendry, 2009). The commonalities within narrative research provide a cohesion to the research paradigm; however the diversity within the framework initially cloud a clear identification of unity within the methodology. The intention is not to create confusion, but to provide inclusiveness to a broad range of research phenomena being studied in varied ways. Through engagement with the diverse elements of narrative inquiry, clarity of the unity of the methodology can be gained. Pinnegar and Daynes (2007) state the commonalities that bind narrative inquiry are the underpinning it is the study of stories, narratives, or descriptions of a series of events, and the assumption the story is the unit that provides a description of human experience. Narrative is both the method and phenomena of study. The data being studied always has an experiential starting point, and narrative inquiry involves reconstructing this experience to increase understanding of it (Clandinin & Connelly, 2000). Clandinin and Connelly (1990) summarise that researchers who utilise narrative inquiry collect and tell stories about people’s lives, describe the lives of individuals, and reconstruct narratives of individual experience. The authors also comment that narrative inquiry is one of the most used methodologies in education.
Conclusion
Narrative inquiry is currently a popular method for conducting research in education and psychotherapy. But this was not always been so. There once was a time when narrative inquiry struggled and developed itself into being a reputable research methodology. Researchers are part of a narrative story involving beliefs about the stories of research and research methodologies. True to the epistemology of narrative inquiry, it is important to understand how the emergence of this methodology impacts and alters the current concept of it. In order to understand this story, it is important to look back to history to re-remind us of the development of narrative inquiry through literary theory and how, similar to a river, the ideology moved and shifted with every rock and current it encountered until it formed itself into the full-bodied stream of thought and research methodology it currently is.
@InProceedings{BUYDENS2011NAR,
author = {Buydens, S.},
title = {NARRATIVE METHODOLOGY: WHERE DID WE COME FROM AND WHERE ARE WE NOW?},
series = {3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN11 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-615-0441-1},
issn = {2340-1117},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {4-6 July, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {188-191}}
TY - CONF
AU - S. Buydens
TI - NARRATIVE METHODOLOGY: WHERE DID WE COME FROM AND WHERE ARE WE NOW?
SN - 978-84-615-0441-1/2340-1117
PY - 2011
Y1 - 4-6 July, 2011
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN11 Proceedings
SP - 188
EP - 191
ER -
S. Buydens (2011) NARRATIVE METHODOLOGY: WHERE DID WE COME FROM AND WHERE ARE WE NOW?, EDULEARN11 Proceedings, pp. 188-191.
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