Bracketing as a skill in conducting unstructured qualitative interviews
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Bracketing as a skill in conducting unstructured qualitative interviews

Minna Anneli Sorsa Co-ordinator, Pirkanmaa Hospital District, Tampere, Finland
Irma Kiikkala Docent in nursing science, University of Eastern Finland, Kuopio, Finland
Päivi Åstedt-Kurki Professor in nursing science, University of Tampere, Pirkanmaa Hospital District, Tampere, Finland

Aim To provide an overview of bracketing as a skill in unstructured qualitative research interviews.

Background Researchers affect the qualitative research process. Bracketing in descriptive phenomenology entails researchers setting aside their pre-understanding and acting non-judgementally. In interpretative phenomenology, previous knowledge is used intentionally to create new understanding.

Data sources A literature search of bracketing in phenomenology and qualitative research.

Review methods This is a methodology paper examining the researchers’ impact in creating data in creating data in qualitative research.

Discussion Self-knowledge, sensitivity and reflexivity of the researcher enable bracketing.

Conclusion Skilled and experienced researchers are needed to use bracketing in unstructured qualitative research interviews.

Implications for research/practice Bracketing adds scientific rigour and validity to any qualitative study.

Nurse Researcher. 22, 4, 8-12. doi: 10.7748/nr.22.4.8.e1317

Peer review

This article has been subject to double blind peer review

Conflict of interest

None declared

Received: 11 April 2014

Accepted: 24 June 2014

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