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Who am I?: The Challenges of Multiple Positionalities in Nursing Research


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A participatory action research (PhD) study was conducted to critically explore the issues surrounding children and young people visiting acutely ill patients in a large UK hospital. A continuous reflexive analysis of the researcher’s positionality and values enabled self-study of both clinical and research practice, locating the researcher as an insider for the duration of the study. During this reflexive analysis it was evident that the researcher had experienced multiple positionalities. Within the hospital the researcher had been positioned as an insider collaborating with other insiders to an outsider collaborating with insiders. When working with local college students the researcher had considered herself as an outsider collaborating with outsiders, whereas the college students may have perceived the researcher as an insider collaborating with outsiders. It became evident that the positionalities of the participants were also affected by the multiple identities they associated with; the professional identify of a nurse or the personal identify of a parent, child, sibling, patient or relative. During the research these multiple positionalities allowed for in-depth discussion and the challenging of personal and professional values. This presentation will describe the analysis of the researchers and participants multiple identities and positionalities, and the effect these may have had upon the research process, a posteriori knowledge. It will explore how these identities and positionalities seemed to underpin the values and attitudes of the participants and the researcher; resulting in a reimagining of professional identities.

Conference Name 2018 Qualitative Methods Conference
Conference Location Banff
Start Date May 1, 2018
End Date May 3, 2018
Acceptance Date Dec 18, 2017
Publication Date Nov 15, 2018
Series Title Qualitative Methods Conference
Publisher URL


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