Lesson 8: Data analysis in qualitative research

Lesson 8: Data analysis in qualitative research

Unquestionably, data analysis is the most complex and mysterious of all of the phases of a qualitative project, and the one that receives the least thoughtful discussion in the literature. For neophyte nurse researchers, many of the data collection strategies involved in a qualitative project may feel familiar and comfortable. After all, nurses have always based their clinical practice on learning as much as possible about the people they work with, and detecting commonalities and variations among and between them in order to provide individualised care. However, creating a database is not sufficient to conduct a qualitative study. In order to generate findings that transform raw data into new knowledge, a qualitative researcher must engage in active and demanding analytic processes throughout all phases of the research.

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