Skip Nav

Phenomenology (philosophy)


❶The term should not be confused with "intention" or the psychoanalytic conception of unconscious "motive" or "gain".

An encyclopedia of philosophy articles written by professional philosophers.

Navigation menu

The emphasis in ethnography is on studying an entire culture. Originally, the idea of a culture was tied to the notion of ethnicity and geographic location e. That is, we can study the "culture" of a business or defined group e.

Ethnography is an extremely broad area with a great variety of practitioners and methods. However, the most common ethnographic approach is participant observation as a part of field research. The ethnographer becomes immersed in the culture as an active participant and records extensive field notes.

As in grounded theory, there is no preset limiting of what will be observed and no real ending point in an ethnographic study. Phenomenology is sometimes considered a philosophical perspective as well as an approach to qualitative methodology. It has a long history in several social research disciplines including psychology, sociology and social work. Phenomenology is a school of thought that emphasizes a focus on people's subjective experiences and interpretations of the world.

That is, the phenomenologist wants to understand how the world appears to others. Field research can also be considered either a broad approach to qualitative research or a method of gathering qualitative data. Data analysis will be the focus of the next module in this series. Phenomenological Research Methods — Contains a detailed descriptive of different types of phenomenological research methods.

This pin will expire , on Change. This pin never expires. Select an expiration date. About Us Contact Us. Search Community Search Community. List and describe the steps involved in a phenomenology study. Describe the basic principles applied to phenomenological methodology and data collection. Discuss ways in which phenomenological data can be collected. Summarize tips for conducting an effective interview. Following is a list of principles and qualities applied to phenomenological methodology and data collection: Phenomenology searches for the meaning or essence of an experience rather than measurements or explanations.

Researcher should begin with the practice of Epoche. He or she will describe their own experiences or ideas related to phenomenon to increase their own awareness of their underlying feelings. Phenomenology is different in that the researcher is often participatory and the other participants are co-researchers in many cases. This type of research focuses on the wholeness of the experience, rather than its individual parts. Phenomenology differs from other research in that it does not test a hypothesis, nor is there an expectation that the results predictive or reproducible.

On the other hand, there is a paradigm for research in psychology as a natural science that seeks to isolate subjective phenomena, for example qualia , for example,, for the sake of discovering a correlation with natural phenomena such as electro-chemical activity of the central nervous system. At this point, a number of different ways to identify generally the relation between psychology and phenomenology are available. In this way, the study of such topics and themes should lead ultimately to consideration of the transcendental features involved.

Thirdly, psychology as a whole may be divided into the different attitudes of the naturalistic and personalistic with research in psychology as a natural science and as a human science resulting from these, respectively, and with both attitudes subordinated to the properly phenomenological attitude compare Husserl, , p. Notice, in this way all phenomena, as phenomena of human experience, fall within the scope of phenomenology proper; however, it points to a significant confusion on the part of the psychologist when the non-universal, non-necessary aspects of the phenomena are taken as the features to be studied through phenomenological science.

Hence, it is as if these three general identifications relate to one another circularly, since failure to accomplish the transcendental-phenomenological viewpoint of the third may place the psychologist, studying merely subjective phenomena, back at the first. From the properly phenomenological perspective of the third general identification, then, the following comments by Kant and Husserl are understood more easily. Kant famously argued in the Preface to his Metaphysical Foundations of Natural Science that empirical psychology can never be a proper natural science Kant, , p.

For Kant, the naturalization of psychology suggests a denial of free will in humans, a position his philosophy fundamentally rejects. Yet, as indicated with the primary division of psychology into natural and human science, psychology tends to take a psychophysical understanding of human being as a point of departure for further research compare [..

In fact, psychologists may be classified by a taxonomy of relations between the psychological and the physical. Next, there are those who seek a reduction of either one of the psychological, or the physical, to the other. Though, again, it seems more popular and plausible today to find the reduction of the psychological to the physical advocated. Lastly, there are those who seek to characterize the relation in terms of supervenience.

The perhaps most popular articulation suggests that psychological states cannot be eliminated in favor of, or reduced to, physical states; however, there can be no changes to psychological states without there being accompanying changes to physical states compare Kim, ; compare Kim, What one has here, from the point of view of natural science, is a number of individual human beings each with a particular consciousness, a particular psyche … belonging to each.

In the psycho-physical interrelated context that is made possible by the material interrelations of the animate organisms, there arise in the individual psyches acts that are intentionally directed at something psychically external. But what appears here is always only new states of the individual psyches Husserl, , p. As we know, there come continually into consideration in the phenomenological exploration of the acts both consciousness itself and the correlate of consciousness, noesis and noema.

Wherever we go, we bring the necessary and universal conditions for the possibility of experience to our experiences. Both the naturalization project and the merely subjective point of view project are misidentified with phenomenological psychology, considering phenomenology proper; moreover, both of these projects may fail at avoiding psychologism compare Husserl, b, p.

However, as the above discussion of the progressive movement to transcendental phenomenology shows, there is a continuity to be discerned across the introductions compare McKenna, According to Carr, Husserl attempts an introduction to phenomenology in all of the following books: Since each of the ways explained by Kern are ways into the transcendental phenomenological attitude, only their differences will be briefly characterized here.

The characterization of their differences is helpful toward clarifying what is meant by phenomenological psychology. This is because across the differing introductions, it is not difficult to lose sight of the many different unifying themes with which to coherently understand the relation between phenomenology and psychology.

The Cartesian way seeks an absolute starting point from which philosophy may be understood as a science. This starting point demands absolute evidence, and this means simply clear and distinct evidence that cannot be doubted.

Belief in the mind-external world is then to be doubted, since there is supposed to be no absolute evidence for belief in the mind-external world. Though an exhaustive list of phenomenologists is outside the scope of this article, what follows is a brief list of major figures in phenomenology.

The purpose of this list is to suggest that, despite the heterogeneity of approaches across the figures peopling the list, as far as these individuals were engaged in phenomenology, they participated in a method grounded in the transcendental attitude. As should be clear, phenomenological psychology, as a science, concerns itself with what is necessary and universal in human experience. This is opposed to the approach to human experience that seeks to record subjective experience as subjective.

With this distinction in mind, there are a number of research methods classified as within phenomenological psychology to consider. Hence, the controversy and challenges remain for phenomenological psychology. That is to say, the psychological sciences that self-identify as phenomenological may be interrogated regarding whether they avoid psychologism and whether they might be better classified as phenomenographic.

As exemplified by work found in the Zollikon Seminars , Martin Heidegger has provided a number of valuable insights into how phenomenology may relate to psychology. From this discussion, Heidegger provides his understanding of the distinction between psychology and philosophy, and this distinction applies to phenomenology in essentially the same way it was reflected on above in Husserl. That is to say, Heidegger suggests phenomenological psychology is intermediate to phenomenological transcendental philosophy.

What this means for Heidegger is that when phenomenology is used as a method to understand being, then phenomenology is used philosophically, and when phenomenology is used as a method to understand being as human being, then it is used psychologically or anthropologically. Since being is a condition for the possibility of being-in-the-world, an analysis of being will yield ontological insights. To be clear, beings may be described in terms of cultural and historical facts.

However, such descriptions fall short of understanding being as the condition for the possibility of beings. Frederick Wilhelmsen famously described this difference in terms of beings as nouns and be-ing as a participle. What this means for phenomenological psychology is that insofar as it merely views the ontic fact domain of human being, then, according to Heidegger like Kant and Husserl before him , it falls short of the transcendental attitude.

That is to say, on the one hand, psychology is clearly delimited from ontology. On the other hand, psychology is grounded in ontology. There can be no human being, if there is no be-ing. So, what is the value of phenomenology for psychology?

As disclosing the existentials existentialia , then, phenomenology may be used as a method toward an awareness, which is psychologically therapeutic, in its affirmation of human freedom. Just as existentialism and freedom belong together, so too awareness of the conditions making human experiences possible, when considered from the first-person perspective regarding lived experience, may be therapeutic.

In essence this is the training of a client seeking psychotherapy to perform a phenomenological reduction to accomplish a transcendental attitude to their own lived experience.

This is Da-sein analysis. Ultimately this is ontology, through psychology, not psychology; however, it is still related to psychology as being psychotherapeutic. Further, such an understanding of phenomenology elucidates the consistent thread running through the heterogeneous styles of the major figures standardly considered phenomenologists.

In order to clarify further the meaning of phenomenological psychology as a science, phenomenology was contrasted with phenomenography.

Phenomenography refers to the study of the merely subjective aspects of experience.

Resource Links:

Main Topics

Privacy Policy

Phenomenology in business research focuses on experiences, events and occurrences with disregard or minimum regard for the external and physical reality. Phenomenology, also known as non-positivism, is a variation of interpretivism, along with other variations such as hermeneutics, symbolic interactionism and others.

Privacy FAQs

Through the collection of data the researcher must also identify the second element of phenomenological research, of “locating the universal nature of an experience” (Campbell, Introductive Methods to Qualitative Research: Course Notes, n.d., p. 3).

About Our Ads

Mar 15,  · In phenomenologically inspired methods research findings are analyzed using concepts from phenomenological philosophy to interrogate the findings and to enable greater theoretical analysis. However, the phenomenological approach covers different approaches, from pure description to approaches more informed by . METHODS OF QUALITATIVE RESEARCH: PHENOMENOLOGICAL RESEARCH Charisse Gennevieve Ballad Ralph Julius Bawalan 2. AT A GLANCEWhereas a narrative study reports the life of a single individual, a phenomenological study describes the meaning of several individuals of their lived experience.

Cookie Info

phenomenological research an inductive, descriptive research approach developed from phenomenological philosophy; its aim is to describe an experience as it is actually lived by the person. qualitative research research dealing with phenomena that are difficult or impossible to quantify mathematically, such as beliefs, meanings, attributes, . Phenomenology Methods & Data Collection This module provides an overview of research methods for phenomenological studies and describes means of data collection. Learning Objectives: List and describe the steps involved in a phenomenology .