TheProcessofDataAnalysis • Interviews
• Field Notes
• Scanned Material
• Transcription of the data
• To get general sense of the dataReading
• Identifying segments of text
• Assigning a label or "code" to them
• Identifying text with descriptive
value for report
• Identifying text with thematic value for
Studies one or more cases bounded by a
Case(s) studied over time for in-depth
Employs multiple data collection
Generates a rich description of the cases
Examines themes which emerge from
the study of each case
Explores the “lived experiences” of
Describes the meaning that individuals assign
to their experience
Illuminates commonalities of experience
Distills descriptions to find the “essence of the
phenomenon of study
Aims to generate theory
Is emergent and dynamic in nature
Researcher derives theory which is based or “grounded”
Produces a broad explanation of a process, action, or
Theory is formed from the collective perspectives of a cast
number of participants.
Performed by Researcher or Transcriptionist
Use detailed descriptive information
Time, setting, participant, session type
Use wise margins to enable note-talking
Clearly distinguish between speakers
Clearly demarcate interview/survey questions
Make note of incidental noises
Pauses, inaudible remarks, laughter, crying, or
other noises that occur during the interview
Computer files, filing folders, or index cards
By type of document, participant, location, or data
Systematic naming of files for easy identification
Duplicate physical and/or digital copies of data
Analyzing Data by Hand
More helpful for smaller
Uses hard copies of data
Organization of data occurs
Margins used for note-
Retain original copies of
Analyzing Data with Computer Assisted
Qualitative Data Analysis Software (CAQDAS)
Assists with organization and management of data.
Enables researcher to sort data, assign labels or
codes to data, and search data.
Uploading data into software.
Selecting data within a test to sort under a chosen code, or category.
Searching for text within all data sources that correspond to code.
Reviewing coded data.
Variety of CAQDAS programs exist including: Nvivo,
Atlas.ti, HyperRESEARCH, and MAXQDA.
Using Codes to Build Themes
Process by which the researcher
makes sense of the data.
Coding process begins with
repeated readings of the data.
The data is segmented into text
or image fragments.
Each fragment is labeled with a
short, descriptive word or phrase
The identified codes are refined
to eliminate redundancy.
Codes are combined to form
I really wasn’t happy with the outcome. I
almost started to cry when I found out. I had
worked so hard to get a good grade in the
class. I felt bad that all my hard work was for
nothing. I knew that this would have a big
impact on my GPA. I had to get and get myself
together before anyone from class saw me. I
didn’t want them asking why I was misty-eyed
all of a sudden.
Report Findings: Narrative Form
Chief form of reporting in most qualitative
Includes supportive excerpts from the
Includes multiple perspectives, and negative-
Explore within-participant contradiction.
Example of Narrative Reporting
All 11 students noted subject eating habits due to environmental factors, such as cultural upbringing
and religious affiliation. Student 1 indicated their cultural perception of rice as a norm in the
household, “We’ve always had rice in the house. My mom, my uncles, [and] everyone else I knew just
ate rice. That’s how I was brought up and we eat it every day.” Student 2 also demonstrated support
for this theme by stating, “We are Hispanic people and we like meat: pork, lamb, [and] beef. You
name it… I know it’s fatty, but that’s what makes it delicious. I grew up on loving it and it’s not
goanna [sic] change.” Student 2 mentioned their eating habit due to their religious affiliation, “…so,
on every Sunday we made sure to not eat any meat. Fish was ok, but that’s all. I think it’s kinda [sic]
stuck with us, and we just started eating healthier because of our faith; we practiced it.” ….
Three students indicated using food as a tool to help cope, manage, and deal with stressful situations.
Student 2 stated that they ran to food when their parents would argue, “I’d see them fight and I felt
so useless. I guess, I kinda [sic[ just ate to shut them out. Just ran to the cupboard. I was crying a lot
then [and] the food helped.” Student 1 however had a different take on food as a coping tool: I hated
food. The idea of it made me sick. My friends used to say that I was letting him [boyfriend] take
control over me like that. But I didn’t care. I loved him and wanted him to like me….wanted to be a
supermodel or something, but it wasn’t going to happen. I just avoided food like I avoided my issues
Reporting Findings: Grounded Theory
Interview Question 1. “What have your experiences been like in feeding your twins?”
Open coding revealed three sets of theme related information based on planning, level of
difficulty, and type of blood. The majority of participants cited the level of difficulty associated with
feeding their twins. Level of difficulty was related to overall feeding and difficulty of individual
children. Plans for feeding and the types of food the twins were fed were also noted. See Table 1 for
Feeding Interview Question 1 Open Coding Responses
Lincoln and Guba (1981) suggest four criteria for
How “true” are the findings?
Can the findings be generalized?
Can the study and findings be replicated?
How free are the results from researcher bias?
Pitfalls in Qualitative Research
Choosing an Inappropriate Design
Lack of Research Focus
Not Achieving Saturation
Unclear or Irrelevant Interview Questions
Leading Interview Questions
Data Analysis and Interpretation