9th Conference European Sociological Association

RN20 Qualitative Methods

2009-09-05 09:00:00 2009-09-05 10:30:00 Saturday, 5 September 09:00 - 10:30 Innovative Methods Building II, B2.01

The vignette technique: advantages and limits of a technique of reconstruction of the real

Using the vignette technique is not very frequent yet in sociological research. This technique is however frequently used by psychologists and politists, both in their quantitative and qualitative studies. J. Finch (1987) defines it as ?short stories concerning hypothetical characteristics in a specific context, about which the interrogated person is invited to answer?. The use of this technique in sociology has grown and diversified, and its application is more rigorous. First I will briefly describe its use by sociologists in the last 50 years, then I will recall some of its principles. Finally, I will try to show the advantages and limits of this technique of reconstruction of the real, using an ongoing qualitative research on family education as an example.