The article featured in this critique discusses an analysis of the lived experience of student veterans that uses photovoice methodology. The author postulates that the population group has trouble adjusting to student life. He then evaluates a group of volunteers who used cameras to convey their transition experience. As a result, four key themes emerge reminiscence on the past, transition from military to civilian life, entry to a new stage, and the student’s current environment. The author concludes that the findings can contribute to the creation of a transition model that will help veteran students adjust. This paper provides a critique of the paper-based on criteria established by O’Brien, Harris, Beckman, Reed, and Cook (2014).
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The title and abstract provided by the author are detailed and informative, covering the essential elements, fulfilling objectives 1 and 2. The introduction section establishes the problem and relevant research in addition to postulating the questions explicitly, and so goals 3 and 4 are also met. The approach used is explicitly defined as phenomenology with guiding theory supplied, but researcher characteristics have been omitted. As such, criterion 5 is satisfied, but not criterion 6. The context has not been described in detail, either, despite the central assumption that the participants are students at a college or university. As such, objective 7 remains inadequately covered in the Methods section.
The paper describes participant selection in detail, though it does not discuss saturation, and the author explains that an institutional review board approved the study. Thus, objective 8 is fulfilled partially, and objective 9 is satisfied entirely. The author discusses data collection methods and instruments in considerable detail, satisfying goals 10 and 11. The units of study and data processing are also explained in detail, with Tomar (2013) mentioning the use of triangulation to obtain improved accuracy. These aspects correspond to goals 12 and 13, satisfying them completely. An extensive data analysis section that discusses the researcher’s influence is present, and so the study fulfills condition 14.
As was mentioned above, the author discusses triangulation and uses it to enhance the study, satisfying criterion 15. He conducts an extensive synthesis of the findings, identifying the main themes and creating a model with the support of extensive empirical evidence. Thus, the Results section fulfills objectives 16 and 17 satisfactorily. The Discussion section satisfies criterion 18 by discussing the integration of the work with prior theory and its potential future implications. Lastly, the study discusses its limitations and funding, though the latter is covered in the Methods chapter but does not mention conflicts of interest. As such, objective 19 is fulfilled, objective 20 is partially fulfilled, and objective 21 is unfulfilled.
The paper is a mostly adequate report on the study, though it has some weaknesses that should be addressed. The researcher should consider his impact on data collection and the context in which the investigation takes place in more detail. He should also consider sample saturation and move information about the funding for his research to the Discussion chapter. An explicit explanation of the conflicts of interest, or absence thereof, would also improve the work considerably. The paper satisfies every other criterion, and most of these improvements are minor, and so it is possible to assert that its quality is generally high. Nevertheless, there is potential for improvement without extensive effort on the author’s part, and he should use the suggestions offered herein future reports.
O’Brien, B.C., Harris, I.B., Beckman, T.J., Reed, D.A., & Cook, D.A. (2014). Standards for reporting qualitative research: A synthesis of recommendations. Academic Medicine, 89(9), 1245-1251.
Tomar, N. (2013). Examining the lived experience of student veterans using photovoice methodology. Web.
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