Using focus groups to facilitate culturally anchored research

Diane Hughes, Kimberly DuMont

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Scholars have acknowledged the need to anchor scientific knowledge about social and psychological processes in the norms, values, and experiences of the partticular population under study. This article describes how focus groups can be incorporated into the planning stages of a research pogram to facilitate these goals. After a brief overview of teh central components of focus group research, and example from a program of research involving dual-earner African American families is used to as an illustration. The article describes how (a) the identification of cultural knowledge and (b)access to the language participants use to think and talk about a topic can help researchers formulate a conceptual framework, identify important constructs, and develop appropriate instruments for assessing constructs. Some strengths and limitations of focus group research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)775-806
Number of pages32
JournalAmerican journal of community psychology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1993


  • African-American families
  • focus groups
  • methodology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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