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We continually use qualitative research methodologies to study attitudes, behaviours, values, cultures, lifestyles, and how these factors cause an individual to react. Essentially, qualitative research uncovers the how and why of human decision making at an in-depth and detailed level.

Here at Validity Research, we use various qualitative techniques to delve into the mind of consumers, business stakeholders and decision makers, health care practitioners, just to name a few.

Focus Groups

A focus group is a group discussion between 8-10 people over a specific topic, led by a well informed moderator who generates discussion via questions and comments. Respondents are encouraged to express their views and opinions on the topic, product, or service being discussed


Triads and Dyads are essentially the same as focus groups, the only exception being sample size. While focus groups can have up to 20 respondents in each discussion, triads and dyads are limited to three and two respondents respectively.

In Depth Interviews

In depth Interviews or IDI’s follow a very similar format to Focus Groups and Triads, except that this is a discussion with one respondent only. The main purpose of conducting an in-depth interview as opposed to a focus group is to avoid “group think,” which refers to the notion of respondents influencing each other’s views.

Telephone Depth Interviews

Telephone depth interviews or TDI’s follow the exact pattern of an in-depth interview. It is a one-on-one discussion between a respondent and an interviewer, conducted over the phone instead of in-person.

Ethnographic Research

Ethnographic Research or simply ethnographies follow a ‘day in the life of…’ format. The intent is to provide a detailed, in-depth description of everyday life and practice or ‘the insider’s point of view.’ This could take the form of a shop-along, where a researcher accompanies a respondent to a store, to observe their reactions to various stimuli and products. ‘In-home interviews’ are another popular form of ethnographies, where a researcher would visit a respondent at home and observe how they use a certain product in their natural everyday environment.

Online Bulletin Boards

An online bulletin board involves conducting qualitative research using computer software. It allows respondents to log into and connect to a centralized system. Once logged in, users can have discussions, upload or download content, and even video-chat. Like focus groups, triads, and in depth interview, online bulletin board sessions are also led by a moderator who would post questions each day for a specified time period. During this time, respondents can log in and participate in the discussion started by the online moderator.