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Qualitative Research: CINAHL


Qualitative Studies became a subject heading in CINAHL in 1988, whereas Qualitative Research became a MeSH heading in PubMed in 2003.


  • Explode the Qualitative Studies subject heading, and see what you get. Explode will include the following CINAHL Headings: Action Research, Ethnographic Research, Ethnological Research, Ethnonursing Research, Grounded Theory, Naturalistic Inquiry, Phenomenological Research.
  • Experiment with related CINAHL subject headings such as Focus Groups, Narratives, Interviews (explode Interviews to include Semi-Structured Interview, Structured Interview, Unstructured Interview), Descriptive Research, Descriptive Statistics, Audiorecording, Videorecording, Diaries, Observational Methods (explode to include Non-Participant Observation, Participant Observation, Structured Categories, Unstructured Categories), Projective Techniques (explodes to include Pictorial Methods, Verbal Projective Techniques), Vignettes, etc.
  • Refine/Limit the set to Clinical Queries. Select within the drop-down Clinical Queries menu: Qualitative-High Sensitivity; Qualitative-High Specificity; Qualitative-Best Balance. High Sensitivity is the broadest search, to include ALL relevant material, but may also include less relevant materials. High Specificity is the most targeted search to include only the most relevant result set, but may miss some relevant materials. Best Balance retrieves the best balance between Sensitivity and Specificity.
  • Refine/Limit the set to Publication Types that are qualitative by definition, for example Anecdote, Interview, Metasynthesis, etc.
  • Use Text Words to find articles missed by CINAHL headings (see General Strategies #2)
  • Use a Qualitative Research Filter for CINAHL. 
    • (MH "cluster sample+") or TX life experiences or TX human science or TX discourse* analysis or TX narrative analysis or TX lived experience* or TX field research or TX field studies or TX field study or TX giorgi* or TX husserl* or TX merleau ponty* or TX van kaam* or TX van manen* or TX spiegelberg* or TX colaizzi* or TX heidegger* or TX participant observ* or TX data saturat* or TX semiotics or TX heuristic or TX hermeneutic* or TX etic or TX emic or TX focus group* or TX purpos* sampl* or TX constant comparison or TX constant comparative or TX grounded research or TX grounded studies or TX grounded study or TX grounded theor* or TX phenomenol* or TX ethnon* or TX qualitative or (MH "ethnological research") or (MH "ethnography") or (MH "phenomenology") or (MH "focus groups") or (MH "discourse analysis") or (MH "theoretical sample") or (MH "field studies") or (MH "constant comparative method") or (MH "thematic analysis") or (MH "content analysis") or (MH "observational methods+") or (MH "purposive sample") or (MH "qualitative validity+") or (MH "grounded theory") or (MH “action research”) or (MH “naturalistic inquiry”) or (MH "ethnonursing research") or (MH "phenomenological research") or (MH "ethnographic research") or (MH "qualitative studies") or (MH "Interviews+") or (MH "Narratives") or (MH "Videorecording+") or (MH "Audiorecording") or (MH "Historical Records") 

University of Washington Libraries 

  • Last Updated: Feb 12, 2016 11:52 AM
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Mixed Methods Research Design

CINAHL has the following Subject Headings that may be of use: Multimethod Studies or Triangulation

You can also search your topic with the following suggested text words:

      mixed model* or mixed design* or multiple method* or multimethod* or triangulat*