Here's what the course includes...

Course Overview

Learn how to manage a focus group project, even if you have never done so before. In this 4-part class, Instructor Ronda Slaven guides students through the process of planning and managing a focus group project step-by-step. In Part 1, students learn about specifying objectives and documenting a plan (which sets you up for an efficient screener and discussion guide development process). In Part 2, we cover facility selection, online focus group platforms, screening, and managing the recruitment process. Part 3 prepares students for working with a moderator, discussion guide basics, and coordinating with facilities. And finally, in Part 4, students explore project conclusion best practices and reporting options.

This class only covers reporting options briefly. For a more in-depth class on reporting, see Writing Qualitative Research Reports.

Upon course completion, you will be able to: 

  • Plan the focus group project from start-to-finish
  • Choose & manage focus group facilities
  • Maximize your moderator’s effectiveness
  • Troubleshoot common problems including those that occur during the focus groups

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Course Curriculum

  • 1

    Welcome

    • Getting Ready to Rock!

    • Access Your Live Sessions Here

  • 2

    Focus Group Basics: Applications, Objectives, Screening, Recruiting, Incentives

    • Lesson Plan

    • Focus Group Basics: Applications, Objectives, Screening, Recruiting, Incentives [Lecture]

    • Focus Group Basics: Applications, Objectives, Screening, Recruiting, Incentives [Slide Viewer]

    • Focus Group Basics: Applications, Objectives, Screening, Recruiting, Incentives [Slide File Download]

    • Rockstar Practice [Action Required]

  • 3

    All About Moderator Guides (Plus Projective Techniques)

    • Lesson Plan

    • All About Moderator Guides (Plus Projective Techniques) [Lecture]

    • All About Moderator Guides (Plus Projective Techniques) [Slide Viewer]

    • All About Moderator Guides (Plus Projective Techniques) [Slide File Download]

    • Checkpoint 2: Discussion Guide Critique

    • Rockstar Practice [Action Required]

  • 4

    Managing Participants, Choosing Facilities, Managing Observers

    • Lesson Plan

    • Managing Participants, Choosing Facilities, Managing Observers [Lecture]

    • Managing Participants, Choosing Facilities, Managing Observers [Slide Viewer]

    • Managing Participants, Choosing Facilities, Managing Observers [Slide File Download]

    • Rockstar Practice

  • 5

    Managing Moderators, Facilitating Debriefs, Preparing for Reporting

    • Lesson Plan

    • Managing Moderators, Facilitating Debriefs, Preparing for Reporting [Lecture]

    • Managing Moderators, Facilitating Debriefs, Preparing for Reporting [Slide Viewer]

    • Managing Moderators, Facilitating Debriefs, Preparing for Reporting [Slide File Download]

  • 6

    Bonus Resources

    • Coding Qualitative Data [Downloadable Job Aid]

    • Recommended Reading & Viewing

    • Bonus Examples and Tools

  • 7

    Bonus Video

    • COVID-19 & Online Qual Tips

  • 8

    Assessment

    • Your Rockstar Status Awaits: Final Assessment

  • 9

    Our Short Feedback Survey

    • Your candid feedback helps us improve

Meet Your Instructor

Ronda Slaven

Market & Consumer Insights Professional and Educator

Ronda Slaven is a Market Research & Consumer Insights professional with over 20 years of experience leading strategic research initiatives across a variety of industries such as financial service, consumer packaged goods and retail. ​ Ronda is currently the Market Insights Leader at Synchrony Financial where she manages a team focused on business, consumer and competitor insights as well as macro-trends. In 2014, Ronda aided Synchrony Financial through its' separation from General Electric; helping guide the build of a new brand position in the market through research and insights. ​ Prior to Synchrony, Ronda held various research leadership roles at Heinz North America, Alliance Data Systems, and spent 5 years on the supplier side managing a focus group facility in Columbus, OH. ​ In addition to her research expertise, Ronda considers herself a strong consumer advocate, always looking for opportunities to bring the voice of the customer to the forefront of business. Recently, Ronda has enjoyed spending time mentoring and educating college students in a variety of areas related to market research and consumer insights. ​ Ronda lives in Beavercreek, OH with her husband and two daughters. ​

Frequently Asked Questions

We are committed to advancing the work, and careers, of Market Research & Insights Professionals

  • What is 'hybrid eLearning'?

    Many Research Rocksktar students enjoy the schedule flexibility of our on-demand training format. That's great! But for those seeking an interactive experience with real-time instructor demonstrations and support, nothing beats our real-time sessions! All Research Rockstar courses are offered twice a year in real-time. And 24/7 in the on-demand format.

  • Why memberships?

    Most of our students are working professionals with busy schedules. Sometimes they intend to complete training more quickly than the reality of looming project deadlines allow. With a membership, students have access to all of their classes. No time-outs!

  • Can I get a Free Sample?

    Yes. We offer free previews of 5 courses. Just select the course—or courses—of interest. Be sure to watch a lecture, read a case study or even try a sample quiz.

  • Can I get a group discount?

    Teams of 5 or more students are offered team pricing. For more information, please see our Team Pricing page.

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