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Qualitative Data Analysis: Practical Strategies

by Patricia Bazeley SAGE Publications Ltd
Pub Date:
Hbk 472 pages
AU$208.00 NZ$216.52
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Written by an experienced researcher in the field of qualitative methods, this dynamic new book provides a definitive introduction to analysing qualitative data.

It is a clear, accessible and practical guide to each stage of the process, including:

- Designing and managing qualitative data for analysis

- Working with data through interpretive, comparative, pattern and relational analyses

- Developing explanatory theory and coherent conclusions, based on qualitative data.

The book pairs theoretical discussion with practical advice using a host of examples from diverse projects across the social sciences. It describes data analysis strategies in actionable steps and helpfully links to the use of computer software where relevant.

This is an exciting new addition to the literature on qualitative data analysis and a must-read for anyone who has collected, or is preparing to collect, their own data.

AUDIENCE: Researchers and students across the social sciences.

Foundations for Thinking and Working Qualitatively
Thinking Qualitatively
Thinking Methods (and methodology)
Working Qualitatively
Working Qualitatively - Using Software
Foundations for Working Qualitatively
Working Qualitatively: Implications for Analysis
Writing About Foundations
Further Reading
Designing for Analysis
Design-giving Form to Ideas
Focusing the Study
Designing for Data That Can Be Analysed
Planning for Quality and Credibility of Conclusions
Putting It All Together
Writing About Design
Further reading
Managing and Preparing Data for Analysis
Before Data Collection
Keeping Organised, Available and Usable Data Records
Recording and Preparing Data for Analysis
The Importance of Context
Recording Sample Details for Analysis
Checks and Balances for Data
Managing Relationships in the Research Team
Writing About Data Management
Read, Reflect and Connect: Initial Explorations of Data
Read, and Read Again
Write As You Read
Purposeful Play-preliminary Explorations of Each Data Source
Explore the Storylines
Exploring Context
Identify Relevant Categories and Concepts
Involving Participants in Early Analysis
Re-focus, Ready For the Next Phase
Writing About Preliminary Analysis
Further reading
Codes and Coding: Principles and Practice
Using Codes to Work With Data
Practical Tools for Coding
Methods Decisions in Coding
Issues of Validity and Reliability in Coding
Managing the Process of Coding
A Final Reminder - Codes and Coding in Context
Writing About Coding Processes
Further reading
Naming, Organizing and Refining Codes
What's in a Name?
Naming Broad Topic Areas
Naming Codes to Capture Substance and Meaning
Automating Coding
Developing a Coding System
Reviewing and Refining Codes and the Coding Structure
Writing About Codes
Exercise - Generating Codes
Further Reading
Alternative Approaches to Breaking Open and Connecting Data
Building on Cases
Themes as an Alternative to Codes?
Focus on Interaction - Working With Focus Group Data
Focus on Stories and Accounts - Identifying Structure, Interpreting Meaning
Focus on Discourse - The Intersubjective Space
The Value of Case-based Approaches
Writing About Your Use of Case-based, Thematic and Narrative Methods
Further Reading
Describing, Evolving and Theorizing Concepts
Describing Categories and Concepts (or themes) as a Step in Analysis
Evolving Concepts with Analytic, Meta- or Pattern Codes
Theorising Concepts
Writing About Describing and Analysing Concepts
Further Reading
Comparative Analyses as a Means of Furthering Analysis
Why Compare?
The Comparative Process
Managing Data to Make Subgroup, Contextual or Case Comparisons
Comparing Concepts or Categories Across Groups or Situations
Comparing Cases
Interpreting Comparative Analyses
Writing About Comparisons
Further Reading
Relational Analyses
Coding and Connecting Working Together
Investigating Relational Patterns
Cross-case Analyses
Identifying Patterns of Association Between Sets of Related Phenomena, Using Coded Data
Relating Data to a Theoretical Model
Investigating Relationships Between Specific Categories and Concepts
Writing About Exploring and Testing Relationships in Data
Further Reading
IfGǪ ThenGǪ Is It Because? Developing Explanatory Models and Theories
Analytic Progression
Explanatory Theory as a Goal of Research
Foundations for Explanatory Theory
Logic-based Questioning - Finding the Major Premise
Puzzle-solving with "Conjectures and Refutations"
Case-based Strategies
Theoretical Development and Integration in Grounded Theory
Visual Tools for Theory-Building
Writing About Your Developing Theory
Further Reading
Developing Coherent Understanding
Coherent Understanding?
Coherence Through Description
Theoretical Coherence
Coherence Through Display
A Collection of Tips and Tricks for Bringing it Together
Writing About Developing Coherence
Further Reading
Defending and Extending: Issues of Quality and Significance
The Issue of Quality
Generalisation / Transferability
Theoretical Extension
Audiences and Representation
A Final Reflection
Writing About Quality and Significance
Further Reading

This is an amazing contribution to qualitative data analysis, it is a very thorough and scholarly book. I use it as the course text for my teaching, and as I dip in and out of your book I continue to be impressed. I actually think it stands in its own right as the best, most comprehensive book on qualitative data analysis.

Pat Bazeley was awarded a PhD in community psychology for an action research based thesis which argued that community development was an effective strategy for the promotion of mental health in a disadvantaged population (Macquarie U, 1980). After graduating she worked in community development and as a freelance researcher, undertaking projects in public health, welfare, education, law and community studies. From 1991-9 she was responsible for research development (and for four years, administration also) for academic staff at the University of Western Sydney. Currently, she holds a senior part time position in a research centre at The University of New South Wales (in the Centre for Primary Health Care and Equity) and until the end of 2012 was with the Australian Catholic University (in the Quality of Life and Social Justice Research Centre). In consequence, she has had experience with research design and methodology broadly across the social sciences.

As a research methodologist, through Research Support, Pat now provides research consulting and retreat facilities for researchers from a wide range of disciplines (and countries) at the Research Farm near Bowral, in the southern highlands of NSW. Additionally, she provides training and consulting services for academics, graduate students and practitioners in universities, government departments and commercial organisations both locally and internationally. Her particular expertise is in helping researchers to make sense of both quantitative and qualitative data and to use computer programs for management and analysis of data. Her passion is to help people move beyond simple descriptive analyses of rich data.

Pat's own research has been focused in two quite different substantive areas: around the motivation, development, performance and careers of researchers; and in public/community health issues. She has a particular interest in mixed methods research, where she is exploring tools and techniques for integrating analysis of qualitative and quantitative data, and the methodological implications of doing so.

Pat has served as an Associate Editor of the Journal of Mixed Methods Research, reviews articles and research proposals for a wide range of journals and international funding bodies, and has published books, chapters and articles on qualitative and mixed methods data analysis. She has also published on immunisation services, and on the career development and performance of researchers.


-Research Support Pty Limited, Australia and UNSW

Patricia Bazeley has a Web Site at: