Important Research Methodology Considerations 
when trying to ensure Validity & Reliability for research within the "Soft Sciences" 
How you design a study will determine the quality and accuracy of the result of your study, the degree of certainty, and the weight that should be given to findings, and how much credence should be given to the words & conclusions of the researcher.
Quantitative vs Qualitative Research...
Which is preferable?
Depending upon what it is you intend to study, the kind of research you conduct will vary. For instance, If you are studying inanimate objects, attempting to assess things in the physical world around us, or probability, then a quantitative approach to research tends to be best. That is the kind of research used within the "hard sciences." However, when it comes to the "soft sciences" (Psychology, Counseling, Human Services, Sociology, etc), and trying to research not just the "what" or "how", but "why" (e.g. trying to discern what contributory factors or influences underly motives, decisions, attitudes, choices, inclinations, etc), a qualitative approach is preferable.
  
 
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The Implications of
Being Wrong
When producing findings on Sexual Predators which will ultimately be used in influencing public policies, laws, and the decisions made by Judges and Parole Boards, it is imperative that researchers get it right. It is not enough to assume you've properly researched those who've harmed others, or those who say they fight the urges not to... but supposedly are "non-offending" (despite not being able to see what they do online via their virtual private networks when they are away from the therapy session and behind closed doors). Too much lies on the line in terms of public safety and the possibility of future victims to not get it right
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In the world of Soft Science research, it is far too easy for studies to be conducted which produce either sloppy, biased, predetermined, or downright deceptive results or findings, from which faulty, inaccurate, and even agenda-driven "researchers"  or "advocates" can craft a false narrative or influence people, organizations, or public policy and opinion toward a desired outcome. The following will help you see that "not all research is alike", and, depending upon  how the research was obtained, its reliability and validity can vary significantly.
Important Research Methodology Considerations 
when trying to ensure Validity & Reliability for Qualitative Research 
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Important Research Methodology Considerations 
when Studying Sexual Predators
(How you study an elusive creature makes all the difference,
in terms of the truths you will uncover and the insights you will gain)
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Though it cost Jon K. Uhler, MS, LPC, much in terms of retaliation (false charges were leveled against him, which were subsequently dismissed by a judge who saw it clearly as an act of retaliation for whistle blowing), he is heartened by the recent findings of the PA Board of Psychology, which found Chief Psychologist, James Harrington guilty on multiple charges of unprofessional conduct and sanctioning the abuse of vulnerable mental health inmates. As a result, the permanently revoked his professional license. As Jon served a key witness for the State of PA against James Harrington, he is heartened to have been commended for his credibility and his character, for being willing to "put it all on the line" to speak up for those who were being abused within a very closed system.
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What Truths Can Be Revealed Using 
Advanced Technology in the Research of 
Predatory Child Sexual Psychopaths...
men driven to sexually offend children by grooming, exploitation, corruption, touching, violating, defiling, etc.,... who are now unscientifically being reframed and referred to as MAPs ("Minor Attracted Persons")?
(To what extent do brain scans reveal the hidden secrets & the definitive underlying reasons why certain men offend children?)
 
Research Consideration & Implications 
when Studying Sexual Predators
(How you study an elusive creature makes all the difference,
in terms of the real-world implications in the lives of Victims, Survivors, and Public Safety)
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Research Consideration & Implications 
Should Researchers Become
Biased & Agenda-driven
(How dangerous it is when a researcher's personal or political bias skews or colors the outcomes, findings, and conclusions?  What are the real-world implications of such unreliable findings in the lives of Victims and Survivors, and toward ensuring Public Safety?)
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Research Methods Unique to Sex Offenders

When doing any kind of research into behavior and human motivation, especially as it relates to ascertaining the truth behind why predators offend, the challenge is to ensure the information is both valid and reliable.

To ascertain truth when studying such individuals, we must understand that, at this level of offending, the subjects are:

(1) notoriously deceptive and profound liars,

(2) invested in ensuring they appear in the best light possible,

(3) only going to be giving information which cannot incriminate them,

(4) willing to only provide information that does not give away "trade secrets" lest they hinder their own attempts at re-offending once paroled, and

(5) do not want to be viewed as dark-hearted, calloused, and falling on the continuum of psychopathy, lest that information negatively impacts them in the future.

 

The challenge when studying the motivations of profoundly deceptive and predatory individuals is to figure out how to "blend in" in such away that they begin to "drop their guard" and act naturally in terms of who they are and what motivates them. That is a tall order, a kin to trying to grasp the unique nuances of the ways of animal life, sufficiently to be able to understand them in their natural habitat, as opposed to "observing " them in a laboratory or zoo. The only real way of deriving the truth is to try to "blend in" and make them forget that they are being observed. That kind of research necessitates an embedded approach, enabling extensive interaction and observation, from which tendencies, motivations, inclinations, and themes can be derived.

Simply put, when studying people who have demonstrated the capacity and inclination toward doing great harm to others, there is too much on the line to not get it right.

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