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Qualitative Research Resources

Find sources of qualitative training & support at UNC. How to search for and evaluate qualitative research, integrate qualitative research into systematic reviews, report/publish qualitative research. Includes some Mixed Methods resources.

About this Page

Why is this information important?

  • The conventions of good writing and research reporting are different for qualitative and quantitative research.
  • Your article will be more likely to be published if you make sure you follow appropriate conventions in your writing.

On this page you will find the following helpful resources:

  • Articles with information on what journal editors look for in qualitative research articles.
  • Articles and books on the craft of collating qualitative data into a research article.

Writing Conventions for Qualitative Research

These articles provide tips on what journal editors look for when they read qualitative research papers for potential publication:

Belgrave, L., D. Zablotsky and M.A. Guadagno.(2002). How do we talk to each other? Writing qualitative research for quantitative readers. Qualitative Health Research, 12(10),1427-1439.

Hunt, Brandon. (2011) Publishing Qualitative Research in Counseling Journals. Journal of Counseling and Development 89(3):296-300.

Fetters, Michael and Dawn Freshwater. (2015). Publishing a Methodological Mixed Methods Research Article. Journal of Mixed Methods Research 9(3): 203-213.

Koch, Lynn C., Tricia Niesz, and Henry McCarthy. (2014). Understanding and Reporting Qualitative Research: An Analytic Review and Recommendations for Submitting Authors. Rehabilitation Counseling Bulletin 57(3):131-143.

Morrow, Susan L. (2005) Quality and Trustworthiness in Qualitative Research in Counseling Psychology; 52(2):250-260.

Oliver, Deborah P. (2011) "Rigor in Qualitative Research." Research on Aging 33(4): 359-360.

Sandelowski, M., & Leeman, J. (2012). Writing usable qualitative health research findings. Qual Health Res, 22(10), 1404-1413.

Schoenberg, Nancy E., Miller, Edward A., and Pruchno, Rachel. (2011) The qualitative portfolio at The Gerontologist: strong and getting stronger. Gerontologist 51(3): 281-284.

Smith, Mary Lee.(1987) Publishing Qualitative Research. American Educational Research Journal 24(2): 173-183.

Tracy, Sarah. (2010) Qualitative Quality: Eight 'Big-Tent' Criteria for Excellent Qualitative Research. Qualitative Inquiry 16(10):837-51.

Sample Size/Sampling:

Because reviewers are not always familiar with qualitative methods, they may ask for explanation or justification of your methods when you submit an article. Here are some articles that may be helpful.

Bonde, Donna. (2013). Qualitative Interviews: When Enough is Enough. Research by Design.

Guest, Greg, Arwen Bunce, and Laura Johnson. (2006) How Many Interviews are Enough?: An Experiment with Data Saturation and Variability. Field Methods 18(1): 59-82.

Small, Mario Luis. (2009) 'How Many Cases Do I Need?': On Science and the Logic of Case-Based Selection in Field-Based Research. Ethnography 10(1): 538.

 

Books

Search the UNC-CH catalog for books published in the last ten years about qualitative writing. Selected general books from the catalog are listed below.

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