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Analysing interview transcripts and writing

Wednesday, March 11th, 2009 @ 3:06 pm
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Posted in  Data Analysis

It  has been nearly a month since i wrote a post in this blog, this having to do mainly with some health-related issues that have run me down but also cause i needed to withdraw from the public sphere and immerse in the interview transcripts that am working on…it is a slower and more time-consuming process than one may think!

I had some very positive feedback by two participants in response to the refelxive summaries of our interview that i had sent me which gave me a further boost to continue as i do, even if slow, i want to respect my heuristic pace and also make good justice to the transcripts.

A fellow research student was asking my advice about how to go about heuristic data analysis, in order to help her make a start with handling her own interview data. I am recording my email response to her below, which was agreed also by our supervisor that it is a good understanding of heuristics and good way forward:

I wrote to A. about heuristic data analysis:

“If you go in Moustakas (1990), p. 49-50, he uses an example of
research by Clark (1988) and he talks about the following steps of
analysing the data:

2. developing an INDIVIDUAL DEPICTION of each participant’s
experience. I quote “the individual depiction may include descriptive narrative, examples and verbatim exemplary material drawn from the tape-recorded interview.i may also include verbatim conversations, poetry and artwork” – see again my example attached

3. he then talks about a COMPOSITE DEPICTION, choosing two or three EXEMPLARY PORTRAITS and reaching the level of developing a CREATIVE SYNTHESIS, which he says may take a form of lyric poem, narrative description, story or metaphoric tale…am not there yer but this stage will come in the next few months i suppose”

1. developing a PORTRAIT for each participant. I am thinking of having a brief portrait of each interview, in a couple of paragraphs each, sothat the reader can have a quick look, without this being too wordyand get an idea of who are the participants. Am not sure if that willgo in an Appendix or in the main body of the thesis, that is somethingto decide later, depending on how i will see as best way to presentthe data…it is good start though

So, this is where i am at now, doing analysis whilst reading and writing pieces here and there. I am stressed about the clock ticking but i know that i cannot force the process, it develops as am flowing in it – my priority is to be keeping well (life has thrown many other issues at me) and progress as i can, doing my best really, for now

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2 Comments for
“Analysing interview transcripts and writing”


  1. individual counsellors…

    I found your site on google, great site, keep it up. Will return in the future. Submitted this post to Google News Reader….



  2. thanks for ur comment! i had a look at your website too, keep up the good work!


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