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Analysis of Sociological Journal Article by Cherly Regerh Coursework

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Updated: Jun 18th, 2022

Introduction

Cherly Regerh, the author of the article Bringing the Trauma Home: Spouses of Paramedics wrote the article from a symbolic interaction perspective, for she describes social interactions within the families relative to work places. She argues that social interactions in work places affect family interactions, a clear indication that she is a symbolic interactionist. In her argument, she asserts that paramedics’ work experiences such as death of patients, increasing casualties, and other sad experiences traumatize them. The traumatizing experiences of the paramedics spread to the family members through social and emotional interactions. Other studies show that emotional states of police officers in work places depend on their relationships with spouses. This means that there are reciprocal interactions between work and home environments, which influence social and emotional interactions of the people. Conclusively, researchers have established that job related experiences of stress are very contagious in that, they affect quality marital interactions and can even lead to family breakup.

Inductive Research

In her article, Cherly Regerh employed inductive research approach. It is an inductive research approach because the research begins with specific observations that lead to formulation of general theory that supports the main argument. The first hypothesis of the inductive research is that traumatic experiences of the paramedics in work places extend to their spouses and children, thus affecting the quality of social and emotional interaction in the family. This shows that traumatic experiences related to job are contagious in that if a spouse experiences trauma in the work place, other family members too would experience the same due to social and emotional interaction. The second hypothesis holds that family support is very essential in alleviating the traumatic experiences associated with the work environment. Therefore, workers’ support services should extend their services to the families to enhance their capacity of providing basic nurturance to the workers.

Variables

The research examined different kinds of variables that significantly interact to give robust findings. The independent variable consisted of fourteen spouses of paramedics who have mean relationship period of approximately 14 years. The research subjected the paramedics’ spouses to long interview processes and recorded their responses. The dependent variable measured the conditions of the family in terms of work shifts, traumatic experiences, the roles of paramedics, social challenges, and family support. The interactive variable involved diverse attributes of the paramedics’ spouses such as type of marriage, age of marriage, gender, race, number of children, type of employment and the number of years in service.

Surveys

In research design, Cherly Regerh used surveys in collecting valuable data for the study. Data collection involved interviews that used semi-structured questions, which guided the interview process while the researchers tape-recorded and noted down the responses from the participants. In addition to the interviews, the researchers got extra sources of data from respondents’ expressions and impressions expressed during the interviewing sessions. The research collected nominal data that described the conditions of the families in terms of traumatic experiences, the roles of paramedics, periods of work, social challenges, family support, and tentative impressions. Varied nominal data collected provided robust basis of analyzing contagious nature of the traumatic experiences due to work.

Although the research design and methodology are very effective in collecting nominal data, there are errors due to the subjective nature of the interviewing process. The semi-structured interview questions cannot provide sufficient guideline, which ensures that all possible questions have appropriate answers. In the case of interviews, the researchers can influence the respondents to give certain answers; moreover, respondents too can answer certain questions to please the researchers. In addition, the researchers took notes concerning the impressions expressed by the participants, which were very subjective. The research could have employed the use of questionnaires because it is very appropriate and effective in answering all questions with minimal bias. Despite the subjective errors of the research, the findings are valid because the research design has no biases in selection of the participants, thus ensuring diversity of the data collected. The research design and process is very reliable because the nominal data collected is standard and other researchers can reproduce it.

Conclusion

The conclusive research findings show that traumatic experiences from work environment are very contagious because they extend into homes and affect the quality of family interactions. Since family support alleviates the traumatic experiences of the workers, the workers’ support services should consider including other family members in their programs. Family support is invaluable in alleviating traumatic experiences of their members; therefore, the extent to which these experiences affect them calls for more research. Although the research findings are robust, data collection using interviews is inappropriate because it is less reliable as compared to the use of questionnaires. Redesigning the research to give numeric data would strengthen and enhance the validity and reliability of the research findings. Ultimately, the research has revealed that traumatic experiences related to work do not only affect the workers, but also family members, hence the need to extend worker’s support services to all family members.

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