Methods online: Andong Li on doing online focus groups in the pandemic

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The Methods online series is being organised by PhD students at KCL to present and discuss ways of doing research online.

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Many of us PhD students are researching and developing methods to suit our thesis projects; for some of us online formats are becoming a bigger part of our work in the pandemic. Some of us from DDH and CMCI at KCL have come together to organise a Methods Series on ‘doing research online’ for PhD students. This series of methods sessions is a way to draw on resources we have amongst ourselves to solve issues we are facing in our ( solitary) research.

We are thrilled to announce the fourth sessions which will be led by Andoing Li.

Methods Online: Andong Li on Doing Online Focus Groups in the Covid-19 Pandemic

Due to the travel bans implemented in many countries, researchers have been forced to change their fieldwork plans and switch their data collection methods from the offline to the online. In this session, I will review my journey of changing my research methods in the pandemic when planned face-to-face focus groups were impossible. Besides reflecting on my experience of dealing with challenges and uncertainties during the pandemic, I will also focus on the benefits, data richness and practical tips of conducting synchronous online focus groups.

Link: This is an online event so please register on Evenbrite and we will share the zoom link for this virtual meeting about 30 minutes before the meeting.


Daniels, N., Gillen, P., Casson, K., & Wilson, I. (2019). STEER: factors to consider when designing online focus groups using audiovisual technology in health research. International Journal of Qualitative Methods, 18, 1-11.

Abrams, K. M., Wang, Z., Song, Y. J., & Galindo-Gonzalez, S. (2015). Data richness trade-offs between face-to-face, online audiovisual, & online text-only focus groups. Social Science Computer Review, 33(1), 80–96.

Tuttas, C. A. (2015). Lessons learned using web conference technology for online focus group interviews. Qualitative Health Research, 25(1), 122–133.

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