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Qualitative Content Analysis

Empirical Methods for Bioethics: A Primer

ISBN: 978-0-7623-1266-5, eISBN: 978-1-84950-383-9

ISSN: 1479-3709

Publication date: 5 December 2007


Content analysis is a family of systematic, rule-guided techniques used to analyze the informational contents of textual data (Mayring, 2000). It is used frequently in nursing research, and is rapidly becoming more prominent in the medical and bioethics literature. There are several types of content analysis including quantitative and qualitative methods all sharing the central feature of systematically categorizing textual data in order to make sense of it (Miles & Huberman, 1994). They differ, however, in the ways they generate categories and apply them to the data, and how they analyze the resulting data. In this chapter, we describe a type of qualitative content analysis in which categories are largely derived from the data, applied to the data through close reading, and analyzed solely qualitatively. The generation and application of categories that we describe can also be used in studies that include quantitative analysis.


Forman, J. and Damschroder, L. (2007), "Qualitative Content Analysis", Jacoby, L. and Siminoff, L.A. (Ed.) Empirical Methods for Bioethics: A Primer (Advances in Bioethics, Vol. 11), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 39-62.



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