Data Collection Continues!


Yes, those are follow up questions taped to my computer.


Technology is fueling my study.

I am on WhatsApp, Facebook, Skype, Google, Zoom, and Outlook a good portion of everyday. I am taking Spanish lessons online and using Spanishdict for language support. I use Sonix for quick translation and transcription. I compensate my participants using Xoom. I used Survey Monkey for scheduling.

These technologies have made my data collection much more flexible. Interviews are at 7:00AM and 9:00PM, and all hours in between.  If I was in person, I wouldn’t have been in people’s homes and I certainly wouldn’t have been there late at night.

There is something about talking to a stranger online that is socially easier. From a practical perspective, I can look up words and ideas more quickly, and I can type to clarify both sides of the conversation.

I, of course, wish I was in Guatemalan highlands. Online interactions can’t replace in person relationships. However, for my first study – this process is working. My rough goal was to leave Guatemala after 5 weeks with 10 – 15 interviews. I’ve completed 8 in the past two weeks, and am scheduling follow-ups. There are another 18 on the calendar, and ever few days more people sign-up.

Depth is still an issue for me. The reality is that I’m a new research, these are the first questions I have ever wrote, I am doing this online, and there is a language barrier. Guatemala isn’t expected to reopen to foreigners until at least January. So, for now, there are always follow-up interviews.


Update 7.5.20: 30 participants!



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