Publication Date

Spring 2014


Each student investigator (n=14) in Qualitative Methods Research Class (SW781), 2014, recruited a study participant (graduate students from across the university) and trained them in the appropriate and ethical use of photography in this context. Study participants were asked to define and explore the concept of pressure in their daily lives and were instructed to use their smart phones or digital cameras to document their exploration over one week. Using participant-generated photographs each member of the research team conducted a photo-elicitation interview with a participant. Additionally each student investigator recruited between 3 and 5 members of the Penn community (n=75) and asked them to answer 2 freelisting questions designed to help us explore the meaning of pressure.

Preliminary review of the audio recordings from the interviews resulted in the identification of several themes. Examples include time, health, money, depression, sleep, and self-care. Here, we share with you a sample of these themes through participant generated photos and associated quotes. Additionally, we share the preliminary analysis of freelist data.


Researchers: Dana Belletiere, Kristin Bouchard, Luke Butler, Amanda Cafaro, Katharine Cunningham, Mollie Dugan, Alison Flukes, Sally Goebel, Kimberly Kleiman, Kimberly Levin, Joshua Littlejohn, Lindsay Mapes, Laura Rocek, Beth Stelson, Ashley Tomlinson

Professor: Rosemary Frasso, Ph.D

Consultant: Shimrit Keddem

Scientific Advisor: Carolyn Cannuscio, Sc.D

Design: Lauren Hallden-Abberton

Please also see our PennWIC blog post for more description and photos.



Download Poster (34.6 MB)

Download Class Photo with Exhibit (42 KB)

2014photo.jpg (42 kB)
Class Photo with Exhibit

Pressure: Students use qualitative methods to explore the meaning of pressure among graduate students here at the University of Pennsylvania