Throughout this project Stebbins has built on the work of Barney Glaser and Anselm Strauss and their notion of "grounded theory." First, Stebbins extensively observed the routine activities of amateurs and professionals in each field studied. Then, as he became more familiar with the life-styles of the participants, he conducted lengthy, unstructured, face-to-face interviews with, in most cases, thirty amateur or professional respondents. Each field demanded special methods of observation, analysis, interviewing, probing, and reporting. As much as possible, however, Stebbins asked similar questions of all respondents in all fields so as to permit generalizations across these diverse fields. The result was a "substantive grounded theory" of each field studied.
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