Quality Management in Large Research Groups Using Qualitative Content Analysis. Challenges and Opportunities in Research Practice Based on the perLen Study

Katriina Vasarik Staub, Marco Galle, Rita Stebler, Kurt Reusser


Implementing strategies of quality management is an increasingly popular and promising approach to assuring quality in qualitative research, especially in research projects involving a large number of researchers. In this contribution we study and reflect on the challenges and opportunities resulting from applying strategies of quality management to qualitative content analysis within the longitudinal research project "Personalized Learning Concepts in Heterogeneous Learning Froups – perLen." We show that positive effects on the quality of the whole research process and therefore on the overall results of the study can be expected when methods of data collection and analysis as well as application and documentation systems are coordinated, when all persons involved are acquainted with the research tools and their implementation, and when the quality checks conducted are not only specific to the method employed and process-oriented, but also integrated into in every single phase of the research project. The findings described here are based on a study using qualitative content analysis but can, in general, also be applied to research projects involving different qualitative research methods. This could contribute to enhancing quality within and between data collection points in longitudinal research projects and thus also the validity of multi-method research projects as a whole.


qualitative content analysis; quality management; large longitudinal research projects; intercoder-reliability

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17169/fqs-20.3.3391

Copyright (c) 2019 Katriina Vasarik Staub, Marco Galle, Rita Stebler, Kurt Reusser

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