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Male and Female Perceptions on the Changing Roles of Women in Select Partner Peoples Organizations of the Norwegian Mission

Alliance Philippines

Karl Henessy B. Rafa 2000-27169

Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for SW 290: Research in Social Work Practice

Department of Social Work College of Social Work and Community Development Diliman, Quezon City First Semester, AY 2012-2013

17 October 2012

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Abstract

The phenomenon of womens participation and empowerment has had considerable attention and development in the past four decades. Development frameworks have been crafted and adopted by countries and organizations to help conceptualize and operationalize gender and development. Women grassroots leaders have risen up from the ground to form community organizations and hold key leadership positions. This resulted to positive effects in their individual and collective empowerment. However, an unforeseen and unintended result came about: conflicts and imbalances predominantly perceived by men who have not been educated or have not seen value in equalizing the triple roles (productive, reproductive and community management) between the sexes. This study aims to better understand and find possible links between different factors to define the contexts of mens and womens perceptions on gender roles and relations and how these perceptions as well as the changing roles of women as community leaders affect their relationships and dynamics at home. The exploratory study will employ the use of qualitative methods research like multiple case studies and focus groups, while using survey questionnaires as quantitative modality to find coherent links and relationships between variables, support and validate findings from qualitative methods, and permit logical generalizations. It is hypothesized that if changes in perceptions contributing to an appreciation of the womens community management role happen, then conflicts are replaced by acceptance and support between men and women. This particular research agendum is pushed forth to facilitate familiarization of the evolving issues in gender and development and draw lessons and insights that can be used to enhance integration of gender and development values, principles and concepts into community development programs and projects, sensitive and responsive to gender-based commonalities and differences.

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Table of Contents

Title Page Abstract Table of Contents Introduction Significance of Research Review of Related Literature Research Problem/Thesis Statement Theoretical Framework Conceptual Framework Operational Framework Research Design and Methodology List of References

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Male and Female Perceptions on the Changing Roles of Women in Select Partner Peoples Organizations of the Norwegian Mission Alliance Philippines

The concept of women empowerment has improved its depth and meaning over many years of struggle for equal treatment and participation in socio-cultural, economic and political arenas of everyday living. Many gender equality advocates have espoused different advocacies from the right to suffrage, right to compensation commensurate to work, right to accessible and affordable health care, and many others. The evolution of and revolution in peoples perspectives on gender roles and women empowerment have achieved great successes and milestones. Experiences internationally and locally attest to the development and promotion of new perspectives on gender and development, specifically on how the poor women should be helped to harness their potentials and contribute to their own development.

The history of mass movement in the Philippines also outlines the history of gender and development (Corpuz, 2003). From the time when the country was under foreign rule to experiences of grassroots organizing during the time of Martial Law and the emergence of civil society organizations and other forms of mass movement, the role of women has developed and expanded from being confined in the home and revolving around reproductive tasks to being part of a larger community beyond the family, contributing to changes and development in both reproduction and production, as well as in social and political decision-making and leadership.

Work with women in the country consisted of ways and strategies to improve their means of livelihood and social life while equipping them for leadership roles and greater participation in

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community management roles. Many programs and projects by the government and nongovernment organizations targeted poor women as beneficiaries and used a two-pronged approach to their development: their socio-economic well-being and political participation. It was clear to these agencies and organizations that for programs and projects directed towards the poor women to be successful, strategies should target the attainment of both their short-term and long-term needs. Besides such programs, several structures were established to institutionalize gender and development in the affairs of the government and the society as a whole.

In 1976, the Norwegian Missionary Alliance (NORMA), now known as Norwegian Mission Alliance Philippines (NMAP) started its work in the country. Its main program was educational sponsorship targeting poor children in Metro Manila and adjacent provinces. Being child-focused and constantly dealing with the children and their families, using parents, who were mostly women, as community leaders was a strategy that the organization practiced to help it achieve its goals. In the early 2000s, the organization decided to expand its framework of development by opening new communities, called Pilot Areas, to apply community development processes and approaches and implement interventions that not only targeted the sponsored children but the whole community. In these communities, organizing became the key strategy in ensuring the attainment of program outcomes. In the peoples organizations formed, majority were also women, as was the case in the other assisted communities of the organization with educational sponsorship as the sole program.

This research study will be carried out using the experience of NMAPs three partner peoples organizations in the communities of Sitio Pulo in Barangay Tanza, Navotas City,

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Barangay Salambao in Obando, Bulacan and Barangay San Antonio in San Pedro, Laguna. The three organizations started with mostly women leading them and remained dominated by women community leaders. This situation of women holding critical positions in their respective organizations caused both positive and negative effects to their individual, family and community life and has caused great concern both for the PO leaders themselves and NMAP as the supporting organization.

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Significance of Research

It is the studys aim to contribute to the body of knowledge that continues to expand in the area of women and development. The phenomenon of multiple burden among women, the supposed central task of promoting womens empowerment and gender equality awareness, acceptance and appreciation, and how peoples mindset, differentiated between the sexes, will be looked at in the course of the study.

Womens empowerment and participation will be seen in the context of the family and the gender-differentiated perceptions of the respondents will present their individual stances on gender roles and attributes. This will affirm whether or not efforts to advance womens rights and issues at the community level are translated into desired changes in the perspective of both men and women and further exhibited in actions that concretely show equality in roles performed and values ascribed to the performance of such roles.

The condition of multiple burden among women will play a key role in understanding how both men and women view their respective roles within the family and outside of it, and whether or not communication is made between them and decisions arrived at in dealing with this condition.

As an organization espousing holistic development among the communities it works with, the Norwegian Mission Alliance Philippines will benefit from a focused study of its community development program using the gender and development lens. Using the perceptions of both men and women in understanding how they view and give value to gender roles and how they relate

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these to their own development will present to the organization a critical analysis of how development affects men and women and will give possible ideas to improve its current development framework and resultant strategies to make sure that they genuinely transform the minds and hearts of the people they work with by instilling in them an appreciation of the complementary dynamics of different gender roles and the importance of accepting and giving equal value to these differences.

Review of Related Literature

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Numerous local and foreign studies have been undertaken to describe, explain and further explore changing gender roles and relations in the realm of constantly evolving societies. There have been changes in the way gender relation dynamics is shown by both sexes and a variety of gender classifications, but there are certain social structures and constructions on sex and gender that still remain unturned and unchanged, and their negative effects unmasked up to this day.

In the field of labor and industry, several studies have pointed out the inequality that a lot of women experience in terms of administration of wages and other benefits, the low potential of getting into leadership positions and the overall low regard to the quality of work that women are able to deliver. Industries are prioritizing the hiring of women workers, not only because they recognize their ability to produce expected outputs, but because they seldom complain and can be paid lower wages than what their work deserves (Moustasos, 2009). Hence, the feminization of labor (Standing, 1999) came about as a phenomenon where women labor becomes a preferred option of industries to save on costs while still getting the targeted outputs.

Women in most parts of the world as well as in the country are unable to get quality and timely education and health services from the government. While in some instances females are more favored by their parents to go to school (Schultz, 1993) because they are relatively more diligent than males, this is primarily because of the expectation that they will naturally work and earn a living for the family in the future, whether as paid worker in the country or as overseas worker. A lot of mothers, especially those in the remote rural areas still die from complications in

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child birth due to the absence or poor quality of health services in their localities (Tinker et al, 2000).

Most Filipino women are at the receiving end when it comes to discussions and decisions on family planning and reproductive health. In most cases, especially in the case of poor families, it is still the norm that husbands decide whether the couple or one of them, usually the wife, should have themselves sterilized to control family size. It is also the husband, more often than not, who has the final say about the use of contraception or any other family planning means (Biddlecom et al, 1997). Besides poor access to appropriate health information and relevant services, women are disempowered, such that their supposed right to choose whats best for their bodies and families family, given enough information, is practically denied or ignored. In other cases, both men and women do not have enough knowledge of contraception and other family planning means or are strongly influenced by cultural or religious traditions preventing them from practicing alternative means of family planning (Mason and Smith, 2000).

The decades-old phenomenon of labor migration among Filipinos does not exclude women as many of them are employed in different jobs across the world. Many of them are deployed in places like Singapore, Hong Kong, and Middle Eastern countries (DOLE, 2012). It has become normal for a lot of Filipino families to have one parent present and taking care of the children while the other parent is abroad and earning for them. It has also become a common occurrence that women go abroad to work (Sobritchea, 2007) in the hope of earning enough for the familys needs. In this situation, the parent left in the Philippines develops a new perspective on gender roles brought about by changes in the family set-up of gender role performance (Pingol, 2001).

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In poor and even rich families, domestic violence remains an uncontrollable occurrence. Studies report the negative effects to women and their children of the different forms of abuse and violence that some men expose their families to (Samonte-Hickley, 2004). Gender socialization plays a key role in how children at young ages are able to imbibe or learn social behaviors that they witness in their immediate environment, demonstrated and projected as normal by their parents who stand as their role models or teachers of social behaviors (Lee, 2004). The likelihood of acculturating destructive and developing depressive behaviors (Hindin and Gultiano, 2005; Fehringer and Hindin, 2009) is high in environments or households where children are constantly exposed to these behaviors and family dynamics allow for these behaviors to seem natural or normal in the eyes of children.

The spurt of women and development movements and initiatives in the country signaled the rise in women leaders in almost all levels of governance: from the barangay level to the national sphere (Corpuz, 2003). Non-government organizations and grassroots organizations also sprang up to champion varied causes of the womens sector. In rural and urban settings, women play various roles in community management like as purok leaders, barangay health workers or nutrition scholars, security personnel, council members, grassroots organization leaders and members or heads of issue or project-specific committees or task forces as well as in major modes of production (Siason, 1998).

The involvement of women in these community structures gives them a deep sense of connection to their community and an elevated level of self-esteem from serving and leading the

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community. Their voices are heard, their ideas considered and their opinions included in making critical decisions for their organizations or communitys development. In participating in community management and leadership activities, women are able to expand their sphere of influence from the household to the larger community (Labani et al, 2009).

However, in several studies (Kapampara, 2000; Akerkar, 2001), it was found out that efforts and initiatives to increase womens participation in community management and leadership not only brought about positive results to them, their families and communities, but also undesirable and unintended effects to themselves and their families. The condition of multiple burden associated with women, related to their perceived inherent altruism (Brickell, 2010), did not seem to have improved with the introduction of some social development programs and projects targeting poor women and their families. Some women, albeit not discrediting the benefits they experienced from development projects, pointed to the added burden of participating in activities and meetings and attending to the demands of their organizations and roles or positions. This could be attributed to the prevailing perception that womens empowerment is equated with economic well-being and welfare services such as health and day care facilities (Atienza, 2000 cited by Akerkar, 2001) and seldom with community management or political leadership. This resulted to an imbalance in the performance of other roles as more time would usually be devoted to community management roles. Consequences were far from tolerable and acceptable in some instances where couples would fight over conflicts and imbalances in the performance of the different roles of women. While most gender-focused education and awareness-raising activities target the whole community, oftentimes, the womens families, specifically the husbands are unreached by these initiatives, overlooking the rationale and benefits (Flood, 2005) that their

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participation may contribute to development efforts. There are strong foundations for building the knowledge, skills and attitudes of women community leaders but these do not get utilized to serve as pillars in reaching and winning their husbands as well.

The conflicts arising from unmet expectations of role performance based on gender stem from peoples perceptions of what they should and should not do according to their gender. In some studies, perceptions of males and females on their genders supposed attributes affect their views on what roles they should perform at home, in the family (Blair and Johnson, 1992; Greenstein, 1996) and in the community. These socialized perceptions also determine their views of leadership (Bunyi and Andrews, 1985) based on what a certain sexs or genders strengths and weaknesses are and what sets it apart from the other.

The foregoing studies on the changing roles of women in society and the accompanying issues and challenges that go with them reflect the dominant ideological and structural perspectives that drive societys actions and policy declarations towards womens welfare and development. In situating womens needs, rights and issues in the localized contexts of their families and communities, discourses on women and development sharpen analyses on the relationship between perspectives on gender roles and relations and development. A closer look at the lived experiences of men and women and their families gives deeper meaning and definition to their problems and how these challenge their everyday decisions and actions. Research Problem/Thesis Statement

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In general, the study seeks to determine and understand the perceptions of both men and women on gender roles and relations and how such perceptions shape the value they give to these differentiated roles and influence their everyday decisions. Further, these perceptions as well as the changing roles of women in the communities under study will be looked at in terms of their implications or effects to gender roles and family relations.

Specifically, this research will attempt to determine the positive or negative perceptions of both men and women on the latters community management role, the effects or changes, if any, in the performance of gender roles and relations within the family, and draw lessons and recommendations in the integration of gender and development in the community development program of NMAP in its new and future communities.

It is hypothesized that if individual perceptions on gender roles and relations do not subscribe to male-biased or patriarchal norms and standards, then acceptance of and support to womens participation and sharing in responsibilities of meeting household and family demands without perceived disparities across the different roles, become possible.

Theoretical Framework

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The study is informed and use as main foundations two broad theories: gender roles theory and community participation theory. Concepts and elements that define and describe these theories will be related to how the concepts in the study are formulated and how they will be analyzed to measure the achievement of the desired results.

Gender roles refer to the collection of beliefs of what males and females ought to do as influenced by social roles. Gender role theory posits that gender roles are socially structured resulting to sex-differentiated expectations and behaviors (Eagly et al, 2004). It is argued, further, that most societies are socially structured in a way that favors males and puts females at a disadvantage (Wood and Eagly, 2002). This is exemplified in everyday situations where differences in treatment, division of labor and distribution of decision-making authority are experienced differently by males and females. In analyzing gender roles, it is necessary to have a closer look at the different social roles that males and females perform.

Participation in the context of community development is defined as the involvement of people in decision-making processes and problem-solving steps to meet common goals. Further, it is the collective effort of people to pool in and maximize the use of resources to help achieve desired outcomes, share in the benefits of collective action and evaluate every step undertaken throughout the process (Nikkhah and Redzuan, 2009).

It is important to note that participation is a continuum of involvement (Wilcox, 1999 cited by CAG Consultants, 2009) where people get involved at certain levels depending on their motivation or agenda, level of commitment, actual role in the process, confidence and capacity,

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and ownership, among others (Wilcox, 1999). The success of community participation is measured in its ability to (1) influence and promote change, (2) include and involve different sectors especially those directly affected and the larger community in the whole process, (3) facilitate sharing of information and procedures that lead to better understanding of issues and (4) develop the knowledge and skills of people for improved capacity to respond to issues and problems (Wilson and Wilde, 2003 cited by CAG Consultants, 2009).

Gender and Developmen t Approach

Community Participation Theory


Ladder of participation Influence Inclusivity Communication Capacity

Gender Role Theory


Gender roles Gender stereotypes

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Figure 1. Relationship between Gender Role Theory and Community Participation Theory; locating Women and Development Approach between the two theories

Gender and development (GAD) refers to an approach in development where development projects are framed, planned, analyzed, implemented, and evaluated using gender analysis. This analysis seeks to answer the questions:
(1) How will gender relations affect the achievement of sustainable results? (2) How will proposed results affect the relative status of men and women?

Common gender analysis frameworks used in developing GAD projects are the (1) Harvard Analytical Framework, also known as the Gender Roles Framework, (2) Moses Gender Planning Framework, (3) Gender Analysis Matrix, (4) Womens Empowerment Framework; and (5) Social Relations Approach (DevTech Systems Inc, 2004).

The Harvard Analytical Framework and Moses Gender Planning Framework will be useful in the study particularly in the adoption of specific concepts like the triple roles (productive, reproductive and community management), the analysis of practical and strategic needs and the technical and political aspects of gender integration in development. Perception of men and women on gender roles and relations will be juxtaposed with gender-based needs and development initiatives, resulting to an analysis of what perspectives or perceptions support or derail the realization of intended outcomes of development, or of what modifications in programs and projects are necessary to have better impact to both men and women. Rafa 17

In sum, the GAD approach will help guide the researcher in analyzing the link between and among the perceived needs of men and women, their actual life situations and the benefits that they should be enjoying with regards to or regardless of their gender.

Conceptual Framework

Using general concepts of social norms and roles borne out of constructs that shape how people view gender roles and relations, the figure below illustrates the different concepts that are sought to be studied and further understood in the research.

Perceptions, as informed by social construction and social structures are given emphasis in the research. In this regard, perceptions of men and women on their self identity will be determined to understand and underscore similarities, differences and value-attribution that both give their respective sexes. Perceptions on the roles that they perform in the household and community settings will also be looked at. Perceptions of Men and Women Males/females in community leadership roles

Changes in Gender Roles and Relations


Decision-making Productive Role Reproductive Role

Males/females role in the household Rafa 18

Community Management Role

Self identity (masculinity/femininity) Perceived traits, strengths and weaknesses

Figure 2. Perceptions of men and women and changes in gender roles and relations within the family

In addition, changes in gender roles and relations within the context of the family will be highlighted. It is expected that both mens and womens perceptions on gender roles and community leadership as well as the expanding role of women in community management will have corresponding effects or changes in the way couples and their whole families function and perform their roles. Implications in couple and family decision making, performance of productive, reproductive and community management roles will be explored.

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Operational Framework

Dependent Variables Independent Variables


Self identity of men and women Community management role of women

Intervening Variables
Occupation of men and women Age of men and women Family size Ages of children Presence/absence of support system

Conflicts between men and women regarding womens community management role Acceptance and support between men and women regarding womens community management role

Figure 3. Independent, Intervening and Dependent Variables The figure above shows the relationships between and among the identified variables of the study. Mens and womens perception of themselves is interpreted as contributing to how they will look at womens involvement in community development activities. In addition, the community management role performed by women is seen as another factor that may contribute to either of the results or dependent variables above.

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Presumed effects or results of the independent variables are either conflicts between men and women or acceptance and support in relation to the womens community participation.

The study will look at intervening factors or variables that may indirectly have an effect on the dependent variables. These are predicted as those factors that may be the other angles of the phenomenon that may or should be considered to understand it more deeply, allow generalizations to an extent, or highlight specific cases that may explain the relationship more coherently. Independent Variables Self identity of men and women
Number of men and women under study Kinds of traits and characteristics perceived as masculine Kinds of traits and characteristics perceived as feminine Types of social roles perceived as masculine Types of social roles perceived as feminine

Intervening Variables Dependent Variables Occupation of men and women Conflicts between men and women regarding womens Types of occupations of men and women community management role
Amount of income derived from occupation Types of conflict situations encountered by men and women Frequency of conflict instances

Age of men and women


Ages of mean and women

Family size
Number of families under study Number of members per family

Acceptance and support between men and women regarding womens community management role
Instances by which acceptance and support is shown

Community management role of women


Number of women performing community management role Types of community management activities participated in and attended to Frequency of community management activities

Ages of children
Number of children Ages of children

Presence/absence of support system


Kinds of support system present Frequency/availability of support system present

Table 1. Operational indicators to support and measure relationships between variables

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To establish relationships between variables and help identify data sets or categories that need to be gathered for analysis and conclusion, the above operational indicators are set. These indicators will help explain the logical coherence of the concepts and variables and how they relate with one another. The following sets of questions are formulated to serve as guide in understanding the concepts of perception and changes in gender roles and relations.

Perception of men and women On self identity of men and women: What traits and characteristics do men attribute to themselves? What traits and characteristics do women attribute to themselves? On performing household or reproductive roles: What do men perceive as their roles at home? What do men perceive as womens roles at home? What do women perceive as their roles at home? What do women perceive as mens roles at home? To what extent do men value household or reproductive roles? To what extent do women value household or reproductive roles? On community leadership: What do men perceive as good qualities of a leader? What do women perceive as good qualities of a leader? What value do men ascribe to women leaders? What value do women ascribe to women leaders? What limitations do men see in having women leaders? What limitations do women see in having women leaders? Changes in gender roles and relations On decision making in the family: Who decides what in the family? What is done in case of disagreement in decisions? Who has the final say? On productive roles: Who performs productive roles in the family?

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What value is given to productive roles? On reproductive roles: Who performs reproductive roles in the family? What value is given to reproductive roles? On community management roles: Who performs community management roles in the family? What value is given to community management roles? Research Design and Methodology

The study is exploratory and highly qualitative in nature in that it is concerned about having a deeper familiarity of and new insights on the phenomenon being studied with the conscious intention to sharply define the problem and suggest a hypothesis (Rubin and Babbie, 2005). Although heavy on the qualitative side, the study will also employ quantitative methods in data gathering and analysis. It is particularly important to gain a better appreciation of the lived experiences of the subjects under study through the use of qualitative methods, while validating these with quantitative methodologies to support conclusions and allow logical generalizations.

Multiple case study method will be used to understand and explore the context of the phenomenon of women community participation and leadership and the accompanying gender and familial issues and challenges that come with them. Perceptions of both men and women respondents will delve into their real life situations and how these are linked to their perspectives of what their role should be based on their gender. Their ideas and opinions on several other gender-focused issues will also be brought to the fore. Data using the multiple case study design can be gathered through individual interviews, observation and document review.

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Six men respondents and six women respondents from three covered communities will be selected as cases for the study, using non-probability, purposive sampling, specifically critical case sampling where: A single case or small number of cases can be decisive in explaining the phenomenon of interest. It is this decisive aspect of critical case sampling that is arguably the most important. To know if a case is decisive, think about the following statements: "If it happens there, it will happen anywhere"; or "If it doesnt happen there, it wont happen anywhere"; and "If that group is having problems, then we can be sure all the groups are having problems" (Patton, 2002 cited by Lund Research, 2010). While such critical cases should not be used to make statistical generalizations, it can be argued that they can help in making logical generalizations. However, such logical generalizations should be made carefully (Lund Research Ltd, 2010). In addition to the multiple case study methodology, the research will also use focus groups as another qualitative data gathering method. A series of focus group discussions will be facilitated with at least ten men and ten women for each of the three communities to support data gathered from the multiple case studies. The focus groups will also provide for an opportunity to solicit and factor in the inputs and answers of other respondents that are not part of the case studies. Findings from the case studies may need comparison, contrasting or validating through the use of findings from the focus groups.

To support the qualitative modes, the use of survey as quantitative method in data gathering and analysis will be used. A survey questionnaire will be prepared and administered to the study population to get the information and inputs of everyone, including those respondents which have stake in the research agenda within the communities under study but are not selected as samples in the case studies or as participants in the focus groups. The use of the written survey to determine relationships between and among the variables, especially the intervening variables

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which mostly are demographic characteristics of the respondents, will help in establishing such relationships and either support or negate findings from the qualitative methodologies. Sample size for the survey, estimated at 50 to 60 for the three communities totaled, will be bigger than those of the case studies and focus groups, therefore aiding in logical generalizations. The survey questionnaire will be composed of questions that describe and assess themselves and the phenomenon under study using evaluative scales, agreement questions and other rating or ranking scales, eliciting information about attitudes and perceptions that are otherwise difficult to measure using qualitative tools and methods (McIntyre, 1999 cited by Glasow, 2005). These scales and questions will be particularly useful in helping the respondents have a careful self-assessment to bring out their views, opinions and perceptions on the topics or questions being asked.

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