From Concourse to Q Sample to Testing Theory
Misunderstandings have arisen about the nature and purpose of structured statement samples in Q methodology and their relation to concourses (the parent populations of statements) and to theory testing. Moreover, there is little discussion or understanding of proposition sets, or theoretical conditions under which participants are invited to perform Q sorts. A case study in program evaluation is presented as a way to illustrate procedures for collecting a concourse, converting its narratives into Q statements, and selecting a Q sample from the statement universe. An example is then presented of rationality in voting and how theoretical propositions are converted into conditions of instruction that provide facts bearing on theory.