Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Critical Appraisal Resources for Nursing Research and EBP

What is Qualitative Research?

Qualitative research, in contrast to quantitative research, analyzes words and text instead of numbers and figures.  Qualitative research is exploratory and non-experimental.  It seeks to explore meaning, experiences and phenomena among study participants.  Qualitative data is generated from participants' stories, open-ended responses, and viewpoints collected from focus groups, interviews, observations or detailed records (Schmidt & Brown, 2019, pp. 221-224).  

Level of Evidence: VI

PRO TIPS: Qualitative Research Checklist

Each JBI Checklist provides tips and guidance on what to look for to answer each question.  These tips begin on page 4. 

Below are some additional Frequently Asked Questions about the Qualitative Research Checklist that have been asked students in previous semesters. 

Frequently Asked Question Response
Nearly every question asks about "congruity." What exactly does this mean in terms of qualitative research, and what should I be looking for?  In a qualitative study, it is important that all elements of the study - the objectives, methods, theoretical/conceptual framework, qualitative data gathering - all fit together in agreement and that they make sense. Please see page 4 of the JBI Qualitative Checklist for explanatory notes for each question, which elaborate on this concept further. 
For Question 6, where can I find a statement in my article about the researcher's cultural or theoretical orientation?  Sometimes, authors of a qualitative study will provide details about their own cultural or theoretical background. Look for this information in the beginning of the study or in the methods section.