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Intercoder Reliability in Qualitative Research: Debates and Practical Guidelines

O'Connor, C; Joffe, H; (2020) Intercoder Reliability in Qualitative Research: Debates and Practical Guidelines. International Journal of Qualitative Methods , 19 pp. 1-13. 10.1177/1609406919899220. Green open access

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Abstract

Evaluating the intercoder reliability (ICR) of a coding frame is frequently recommended as good practice in qualitative analysis. ICR is a somewhat controversial topic in the qualitative research community, with some arguing that it is an inappropriate or unnecessary step within the goals of qualitative analysis. Yet ICR assessment can yield numerous benefits for qualitative studies, which include improving the systematicity, communicability, and transparency of the coding process; promoting reflexivity and dialogue within research teams; and helping convince diverse audiences of the trustworthiness of the analysis. Few guidelines exist to help researchers negotiate the assessment of ICR in qualitative analysis. The current article explains what ICR is, reviews common arguments for and against its incorporation in qualitative analysis and offers guidance on the practical elements of performing an ICR assessment.

Type: Article
Title: Intercoder Reliability in Qualitative Research: Debates and Practical Guidelines
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1177/1609406919899220
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1177%2F1609406919899220
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions
Keywords: intercoder reliability, interrater reliability, qualitative analysis, interviews, coding
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10091273
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