Focus Groups [S/C]

Focus groups explore what people know, think and feel about a particular topic. A focus group usually involves six to twelve people with some knowledge of, experience with, or interest in an issue.

A Focus Group is led by a facilitator who asks a series of open-ended questions and manages the discussion. A skilled facilitator will encourage everyone to participate by helping them to feel confident about expressing their views.

The information gathered through a focus group provides insight about participants’ attitudes and values (what they think and feel) in relation to a specific issue.

They are a good way of getting views from people who are less likely to respond to other forms of consultation, for example written surveys.

Holding multiple focus groups with different community members on the same topic can increase understanding about a topic from multiple dimensions.