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Participatory action research (PAR) reflects a commitment to expanding notions of expertise, democratic participation and social action more than a commitment to any single research method. However, PAR is more often associated with qualitative rather than quantitative methodologies. This is not a coincidence. The collaborative and engaged approach of PAR tends to overlap more naturally with the flexible, open-ended, thematic approach of qualitative research. Indeed, inferential quantitative approaches as they are traditionally practiced in the social sciences do create a set of challenges for PAR researchers who want to collaborate with individuals holding varying degrees of (in)numeracy. In order to work through these challenges a growing set of participatory quantitative processes/activities have recently emerged–what some have called “stats-n-action.” Inspired by a critical framing of statistics, this presentation will discuss perspectives and strategies useful to participatory action researchers employing quantitative methods.
Brett G. Stoudt, PhD is an Assistant Professor in the Psychology Department with a joint appointment in the Gender Studies Program at John Jay College of Criminal Justice as well as the Psychology and Social Welfare Doctoral Programs at the Graduate Center. He has worked on numerous participatory action research projects with community groups, lawyers, and policy-makers nationally and internationally. His interests include the social psychology of privilege and oppression as well as aggressive and discriminatory policing practices. He is also interested in critical methodologies, particularly critical approaches to quantitative research. Dr. Stoudt’s work has been published in volumes such as Geographies of Privilege as well as journals such as The Journal of Social Issues. He is the recipient of The Michele Alexander Early Career Award for Scholarship and Service from The Society for the Psychology Study of Social Issues. He has also received the Haupert Humanitarian Award from Moravian College and, with his participatory collective, received the Truth to Power Award for Excellence in Collaborative Research from the Education Node of the Urban Research-Based Action Network. Dr. Stoudt is currently the Associate Director of the Public Science Project. He is also actively involved with Communities United for Police Reform (CPR) as a steering committee member.