That the sample is different enough from your own

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that the sample is different enough from your own population of interest that further appraisal of the study is not warranted. Informed consent was obtained ? - The authors should describe ethics procedures, including review by a research ethics board and describing how informed consent was obtained and recorded. Data Collection Descriptive Clarity Clear and complete descriptions ? - In qualitative research, the reader should have a sense of personally experiencing the event/phenomenon being studied. This requires a clear and vivid description of the important elements of the study that are connected with the data, namely the participants, and the site or setting. The researcher includes relevant information about the participants, often in the form of background demographic data. The unique characteristics of key informants help to explain why they were selected. The credibility of the informants should be explored. Particular to qualitative research, the types and levels of participation of the participants should also be
© Letts et al., 2007 Qualitative Review Form Guidelines 8. described, so it is clear what contribution each participant made to the data gathering, analysis, and interpretation of the findings. It is often useful to consider what information is missing. This sheds light on how the research can be understood. Role of the researcher and relationship with participants: Qualitative research involves the ‘researcher as instrument’, wherein the researcher’s use of self is a primary tool for data collection. Documentation of the researcher’s credentials and previous experience in observation, interviewing and communicating should be provided to increase the confidence of the reader in the process. The researcher’s role(s), level of participation and relationship with participants also needs to be described, as they can influence the findings. Identification of assumptions and biases of researcher : The researcher should declare his/her assumptions and biases about the topic under study to make the researcher’s views about the phenomenon explicit. A vivid but concise description of the participants, site and researcher should provide the reader with an understanding of the ‘whole picture’ of the topic or phenomenon of interest. Procedural Rigour Procedural rigour was used in data collection strategies ? The researcher should clearly describe the procedures used to ensure that the reader can understand the tasks undertaken to collect the data. All source(s) of information used by the researcher should be described. The reader should be able to describe the data-gathering process including issues of gaining access to the site, data collection methods, training data gatherers, the length of time spent gathering data, and the amount of data collected.

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