Skip to content
Register Sign in Wishlist

Focus Groups for the Social Science Researcher

$30.99 (P)

Part of Methods for Social Inquiry

  • Date Published: September 2019
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781316638798

$ 30.99 (P)

Add to cart Add to wishlist

Other available formats:
Hardback, eBook

Looking for an examination copy?

This title is not currently available for examination. However, if you are interested in the title for your course we can consider offering an examination copy. To register your interest please contact providing details of the course you are teaching.

Product filter button
About the Authors
  • What is a focus group? Why do we use them? When should we use them? When should we not? Focus Groups for the Social Science Researcher provides a step-by-step guide to undertaking focus groups, whether as a stand-alone method or alongside other qualitative or quantitative methods. It recognizes the challenges that focus groups encounter and provides tips to address them. The book highlights three unique, inter-related characteristics of focus groups. First, they are inherently social in form. Second, the data emerge organically through conversation; they are emic in nature. Finally, focus groups generate data at three levels of analysis: the individual, group, and interactive level. The book builds from these three characteristics to explain when focus groups can usefully be employed in different research designs. This is an essential text for students and researchers looking for a concise and accessible introduction to this important approach to data collection.

    • Offers a clear set of guidelines regarding how to present focus group data for article- and book-length research
    • Provides a theoretical grounding for the use of focus groups in the social sciences
    • Explains how to use focus groups as a stand-alone method or in a mixed-methods research design
    • Clarifies when focus groups may be useful for the social science researcher, as well as when they may not be
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    ‘Focus Groups for the Social Science Researcher by Jennifer Cyr articulates explicit, clear, and excellent suggestions on how to effectively use focus groups in social science research. It is likely to be the standard reference on this subject. In the future, whenever my students are considering using focus groups, I will direct them to this valuable work.' Scott Mainwairing, Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor of Brazil Studies, Harvard Kennedy School

    ‘Focus groups constitute a core and essential methodology, particularly in field research settings. Cyr provides an in-depth analysis of the core uses of focus groups in survey construction, etc. In addition she treats the new and important uses of focus groups for multimethod research in its various forms. It comprehensively ranges from the research design to practical details.' Gary Goertz, Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, University of Notre Dame, Indiana

    ‘Cyr's book is a unique and significant contribution to qualitative social science methodology. Her analysis not only provides step-by-step guidance on how to organize and facilitate a focus group but highlights why a scholar might take on what can be a daunting set of logistical, ethical and analytic challenges. Cyr unpacks what is distinctive about the method and shows us how to maximize the analytic leverage provided by the social interactions of focus group discussions.' Lauren M. MacLean, Arthur F. Bentley Chair, Indiana University, Bloomington

    See more reviews

    Customer reviews

    Not yet reviewed

    Be the first to review

    Review was not posted due to profanity


    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?


    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2019
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781316638798
    • length: 144 pages
    • dimensions: 228 x 151 x 9 mm
    • weight: 0.22kg
    • contains: 9 b/w illus.
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. When to use focus groups
    2. Preparing for the focus groups
    3. Undertaking focus groups
    4. Analyzing focus groups and presenting the results

  • Author

    Jennifer Cyr, University of Arizona
    Jennifer Cyr is Associate Professor of Political Science and Latin American Studies at the University of Arizona. She published The Fates of Political Parties: Institutional Crisis, Continuity, and Change in Latin America (Cambridge, 2017), and has published in several journals, including Comparative Political Studies, Comparative Politics, PS: Political Science and Politics, Studies in Comparative International Development, and Sociological Methods and Research. She is co-founder of the Southwest Workshop on Mixed Methods Research and co-editor of Qualitative and Multi-Method Research.

Related Books

also by this author

Browse by related subject

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner Please see the permission section of the catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×
warning icon

Turn stock notifications on?

You must be signed in to your Cambridge account to turn product stock notifications on or off.

Sign in Create a Cambridge account arrow icon

Find content that relates to you

Join us online

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.


Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.