ABSTRACT

The central assumptions in constructivism regarding the context-dependent nature of reality, multiple perspectives, many ways of knowing, and the impossibility of generalizable knowledge suggest that research design in constructivist research involves giving the most possible structure to an emerging process and product that is actually without predictable structure. Though the exact details of any constructivist inquiry cannot be envisioned in advance, certain aspects can be foreshadowed. When engaging in constructivist research design, the researcher will be the architect of a process that Guba and Lincoln (1989, pp. 186-187) have described as the “flow” of a constructivist inquiry. This flow begins with what was discussed in the last chapter: determining the fit, focus, and feasibility. It also includes organizing the inquirer for undertaking this activity by being certain that the inquirer or the inquiry team is trained in constructivist principles and methodology. One cannot expect to conduct an effective constructivist inquiry without training or practice beforehand.