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Document Analysis as a Qualitative Research Method

Glenn A. Bowen (Western Carolina University)

Qualitative Research Journal

ISSN: 1443-9883

Article publication date: 3 August 2009



This article examines the function of documents as a data source in qualitative research and discusses document analysis procedure in the context of actual research experiences. Targeted to research novices, the article takes a nuts‐and‐bolts approach to document analysis. It describes the nature and forms of documents, outlines the advantages and limitations of document analysis, and offers specific examples of the use of documents in the research process. The application of document analysis to a grounded theory study is illustrated.



Bowen, G.A. (2009), "Document Analysis as a Qualitative Research Method", Qualitative Research Journal, Vol. 9 No. 2, pp. 27-40.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2009, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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