Studying Identity Development: Merging Theory and Phenomenon in the Methods

  • Mariann MärtsinEmail author
Part of the Sociocultural Psychology of the Lifecourse book series (SPL)


How can we study processes that are unique, varied and always in the process of changing? How does one make generalisations about psychological processes by examining the idiosyncratic life experiences of single individuals? These questions are discussed in this chapter that introduced the methodological approach used in the research presented in this book. It builds on Valsiner’s (From methodology to methods in human psychology, Springer, 2017) notion of the methodology cycle that is seen as a dynamic intertwinement between the theoretical assumptions of the researcher, the way the phenomenon is understood and the manner in which data collection methods are constructed. The chapter also gives a brief overview of the data analysis steps and the study participants.


Methodology cycle Multiple-case study Idiographic research Analytic generalisations Studying processes 


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Natural Sciences and HealthTallinn UniversityTallinnEstonia

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