After collecting qualitative data from in-depth interviews, focus groups, or field observations, students and researchers often struggle to make sense of it. This step-by-step guide draws on the authors' many years of experience carrying out qualitative research and conducting trainings on the subject. Their book describes how to analyze qualitative data in a systematic and rigorous way. The authors introduce and outline applied thematic analysis, an inductive approach that draws on established and innovative theme-based techniques suited to the applied research context. Chapters follow the sequence of activities in the analysis process and also include discussions of mixed methods, choosing the most appropriate software, and how to write up and present the results.

“This book presents what all of the books I've tried to use in the past have failed to present—how to analyze qualitative data.”—Catherine C. Schifter, Temple University

“This book does a wonderful job of explaining how important thematic analysis is for producing good research, and it uses rich and detailed examples to do it.”—Matthew Hartley, University of Pennsylvania

Writing Up Thematic Analyses

Learning Objectives

Upon finishing this chapter, you should be able to:

  • Appropriately customize a research report for different types of audiences
  • List criteria that are important to include in a qualitative (thematic) research report and explain why each is important
  • Effectively structure your presentation of findings from a thematic analysis, including within a mixed methods context

A cardinal rule of writing is to avoid annoying your audience. Although raising the blood pressure of your reader may be the goal of polemical rhetoric, for a research report (or proposal) it can be the fast-track to rejection. Yet we have often read manuscripts or published works that suffer from poor organization, lack of transparency, too much or too little information, unsupported assertions and conclusions, or a convoluted discussion. ...

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