REVIEW: Workshop/lecture on Grounded Theory Method

About Graham R Gibbs

Reader in Social Research Methods at the University of Huddersfield. National Teaching Fellow.

Research Training 2 day Workshop – Grounded Theory Method
by Prof Tony Bryant

Reviewed by Graham R Gibbs

This is a video of a 50 minute lecture by Prof. Tony Bryant (Leeds Metropolitan University, UK) on grounded theory, its history and some of the debates amongst its advocates. Prof. Bryant is the co-editor of the recent Sage Handbook of Grounded Theory (with Kathy Charmaz). So he knows the field very well. Bryant examines the origins of grounded theory and the way that Barney Glaser and Anselm Strauss, its founders, positioned their approach in relation to the dominant empiricist approaches in American sociology at the time. He discusses the key characteristics of the grounded theory approach, such as coding, theoretical sampling, memos, inductive discovery of theory (abduction) and constant comparison. He looks at the development of grounded theory over the decades, including a brief examination of the work of some of Glaser and Strauss’ students.

The lecture was given as part of a two day event for postgraduate students at Leeds Metropolitan University, UK on September 15, 2009. Bryant takes one or two questions at the end. He uses PowerPoint, but these are not always visible on the screen. However, near copies are available  from  here or here. Picture and sound quality is generally good, with some sound interference from the audience but this is not intrusive.

It could be used in class, as is, that is to say as a 50 minute lecture, perhaps as an advance session on grounded theory. However, it is most likely to be used as supplementary material for other sessions on grounded theory. The general approach Bryant takes is high level and philosophical and historical, so for most students this needs to be complemented with more practical sessions on the techniques and procedures of grounded theory – the kind of hints and heuristics that Corbin and Strauss give in their book on grounded theory.

It is suitable for use by postgraduates who have a basic understanding of thematic and coding based qualitative analysis, or possibly as supplementary material for undergrads who have already had some sessions introducing them to grounded theory.

It does have a creative commons license (CC – Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 UK: England & Wales) and is openly available for educational use.

It can be found on YouTube:

It is linked to from Jourm

And the Leeds Metropolitan University Repository:


Related materials

  • Charmaz, K. and Bryant, A (Eds) (2007) The SAGE Handbook of Grounded Theory. London: Sage. This is now available in a paperback version.
  • Glaser, B. G., & Strauss, A. L. (1967). The Discovery of Grounded Theory: Strategies for Qualitative Research. Chicago: Aldine. The original text on the grounded theory approach.
  • Four videos of short talks by Barney Glaser ” The Literature Review in Grounded Theory”, “Jargonizing: Using the Grounded Theory vocabulary”, “High impact dependent variables”, “Grounded Theory is the study of a concept!” <>


Gibbs, Graham R (2011) ‘Workshop/lecture on Grounded Theory Method’. Review of Bryant, A. (2009) Research Training 2 day Workshop – Grounded Theory Method, Methods Website <>

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