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This one-day workshop is led by Professor Catherine Pope, and is aimed at researchers and post-grads with some previous experience of undertaking qualitative research. The workshop is based around four papers, which participants will read in advance. These papers will be used to identify key concepts and begin the process of ‘reciprocal translation’ – comparing and developing the analytical concepts. The workshop will outline the stages of meta-ethnographic process, and participants will use mapping and charting to display the emerging findings. The final part of the workshop will consider different approaches to presenting of the results of synthesis and will also provide an opportunity to reflect on the process and all its strengths and weaknesses.

Who can attend this course? You will need some previous experience of undertaking qualitative research, although no prior experience of qualitative synthesis or systematic reviewing is necessary.

Course tutor Catherine Pope is a Professor of Medical Sociology at the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford. She has undertaken a variety of research synthesis projects in the past decade, including meta ethnographies of the experience of diabetes, medicine taking, help seeking for cancer and the nurse-patient relationship. She is co-author with Nicholas Mays and Jennie Popay of the text book, Synthesizing qualitative and quantitative health evidence: A Guide to Methods. (2007, translated into Japanese in 2009, Maidenhead : Open University Press).

Learning outcomes

By the end of this workshop you should be able to

  • Describe the 7 steps of Noblit & Hare’s approach to meta-ethnography  
  • Identify key concepts from primary papers
  • Undertake reciprocal translation of concepts across papers
  • Describe a meta-ethnography on medicine-taking
  • Consider the strengths and weaknesses of meta-ethnography.