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Benefits of Structured Recreational Activities for At-Risk Youth

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Education
Wordcount: 1254 words Published: 18th May 2020

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The purpose of this qualitative case study is to explore how structured programs such as recreation, sport, and leisure activities can help at-risk youth graduate from high school when offered in a structured environment with the mentors/support of classroom teachers. The primary investigator will interview six to 10 participants who actively work with youth in after school programs who are identified as “at risk.”

Study Method

The qualitative case method is suitable for this investigation (Creswell & Poth, 2017).  This study will use semi-structured, open-ended interviews from six to 10 classroom teachers to gain an understanding of how structured programs such as recreation, sport, and leisure activities can help at-risk youth graduate from high school when offered in a structured environment with the mentors/support of classroom teachers.

Study Design

The study will use a qualitative case study design.  According to Brinkmann and Kvale (2015), interviews with participants should be conducted independently.  Interviews in qualitative study are wide-ranging, probing issues in detail.  Research into this phenomenon requires depth rather than breadth to extract and analyze this data.  Open-ended questions will allow the researcher to cover lived experiences per participant, depending on the years.  A decision will be made to determine what specific questions to ask; collect data from participants; evaluate and examine the information in an unbiased, neutral style (Creswell, 2016).  An audio recorder will be used to record participant responses and help with transcribing the interviews.  Individual participation will be voluntary, and involvement in the study can be terminated at any time.  The voluntary basis of involvement in the investigation is limited by the participant availability, time constraints, interest, and willingness.  The participants who withdraw from the study will have the opportunity to (a) edit or delete transcripts of sessions or (b) not

Population and Sampling Frame

Taherdoost (2016) explained samples sizes in qualitative research show the intent and aim of the investigation.  Creswell and Poth (2017) explained sample sizes in qualitative research should be enough to allow saturation of data and redundancy in information.  The size of the sample cannot restrict from completing a comprehensive, case-oriented analysis becomes difficult.  According to Creswell and Poth (2017), a small sample size is reasonable in connection to the nature of getting qualitative data. 

A collaborated effort will be made with the building principal to get a list of potential participants in accordance to the participation guidelines of the study.  Real names will not be used and will be replaced with pseudonyms.

Participant selection will have the approval of the school administrator.  It is the intent to select participants who can provide useful information to increase insight and awareness into the phenomenon. 

Data Collection and Instrumentation

Data will be collected using one-on-one interviews with classroom teachers.  An interview guide consisting open-ended questions will be presented to each participant (Clark & Vealé, 2018).  Each interview using an interview guide of 15 to 20 questions, will be audio recorded.  Data collection will occur in a private setting with adequate lighting and ventilation to ensure comfort for the participant.  Each interview will be conducted in a setting where the participant is relaxed and comfortable.  Efforts will be made to ensure each participant is comfortable and able to respond to all questions completely during the interview. 

Data Analysis Method

 Data will be analyzed immediately after the first interview and continued with each interview until all interviews are finished (Mihas, 2019).  Qualitative researchers use qualitative investigation tools to handle information more competently during the duration of an investigative study (Mihas, 2019).  Emotional statements, responses, or those mainly characteristic of the investigation findings will be selected.  The data will be analyzed and interpreted using a coding method.  Coding is an important process used to help examine and classify data.  Mihas (2019) explained for interviews and focus groups, code development is inductive after collecting data and during the analysis of data.  For qualitative studies, coding can help the investigator create a broad theory.  Codes are associations among positions in the data and sets of ideas or thoughts,guiding discovery or investigation, which allowed further exploration than the data (Mihas, 2019).  Coding involves searching for actions, occurrences, events, states, tactics, meanings, involvement, associations, circumstances, results, outcomes and locations. 

Software for Data Analysis

The software NVivo12 will be used to analyze and evaluate data.  Participant interviews will be reviewed, and the collected data will be transcribed to identify themes and ideas.  The data will be entered in Nvivo12 to analysis and identify themes.  Notable testimonials and expressions connected to the phenomenon under study will be taken out from each transcription.  Important statements will be formulated and used to form meaning. 

Closing Statement

Through the interview process, all participants will information on being a support to help change the cycle for many youths deemed at risk. This information will help to propose recommendations to existing educational theory.  Further research is needed to better understand the value of mentees for at risk youth and could help to increase our understanding the importance of these relationships and matching the needs from the mentees’ perspectives. Existing literature supports the importance of having one caring adult in a youth’s life to build resilience, personal growth, academics and behavior.


  • Brinkmann, S., & Kvale, S. (2015). Interviews: Learning the craft of qualitative research interviewing (Vol. 3). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
  • Clark, K. R., & Vealé, B. L. (2018). Strategies to enhance data collection and analysis in qualitative research. Radiologic technology, 89(5), 482CT-485CT.
  • Creswell, J. (2016). Research design.: Qualitative, quantitative, mixed methods approaches.
  • Creswell, J. W., & Poth, C. N. (2017). Qualitative inquiry and research design: Choosing among five approaches. Sage publications.
  • Mihas, P. (2019). Qualitative data analysis. In Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Education.
  • Taherdoost, H. (2016). Sampling methods in research methodology; How to choose a sampling technique for research.


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