Laddering & Pyramiding-Correction
Sun, 19 May 1996 22:35:37 +0000

Beverly Walker corrects me on laddering:

>devi, you don't just use these techniques with repgrids. i've had students do
>their theses just using say laddering. Not a repgrid, or any other grid, in

Sure, point taken. The example I gave started with a grid before laddering
to arrive at values, because I was interested in the particular kind of
content analysis that I described, which takes grid information as its
starting point. Granted, there are other ways of obtaining constructs than
by eliciting a grid!

What I _do_ find useful, though, is to start with a construct _however_
derived, and I can see why Landfield, in Beverly's account, would use a
fairly formal approach.

I find it helpful to obtain both poles of the construct at whatever level
of the hierarchy we've reached during the laddering process. This is
because, sometimes, it makes less sense for the interviewee to answer a
question about "why, for you, is (the preferred pole) preferred" than to
answer a question about the less-preferred pole, couched along the lines of
"why, for you, is (the less-preferred pole) unacceptable... what sort of a
world would it be if you _had_ to choose it?

It's the old story, really: a construct, wherever it lies in the hierarchy,
is most usefully understood in terms of both poles.

But sure, you can arrive at this without doing a grid!

Kind regards,

Devi Jankowicz