Qualitative data analysis requires a 5-step process:

1. Prepare and organize your data.

Print out your transcripts, gather your notes, documents, or other materials. Mark the source, any demographics you may have collected, or any other information that will help you analyze your data.

2. Review and explore the data.

This will require you to read your data, probably several times, to get a sense of what it contains. You may want to keep notes about your thoughts, ideas, or any questions you have.

3. Create initial codes.

Use highlighters, notes in the margins, sticky pads, concept maps, or anything else that helps you to connect with your data. See the attached document that demonstrates how one might highlight key words and phrases as well as make notes in the margins to categorize the data:

4. Review those codes and revise or combine into themes.

Identify recurring themes, language, opinions, and beliefs.

5. Present themes in a cohesive manner.

Consider your audience, the purpose of the study, and what content should be included to best tell the story of your data.


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