Guidelines on reporting qualitative research
To ensure all important themes regarding your study design and results are reported in your scientific articles, it is important to follow internationally recognized guidelines. Most academic journals state that authors are expected to follow these guidelines, and some journals will ask authors to state and/or upload the reporting guideline that was used when writing the article. You can find reporting guidelines for different study types on the equator-network. It is important to use and incorporate relevant guidelines from the start of your research project, as they provide items of importance.
This chapter is focused on reporting guidelines for qualitative research. You can find a broader overview of reporting guidelines in chapter on Reporting Guidelines.
There are several guidelines on reporting qualitative research, but the three most widely used are the COREQ (Consolidated criteria for Reporting Qualitative research), the SRQR (Standards for Reporting Qualitative Research and the ENTREQ (Enhancing Transparency in Reporting the synthesis of Qualitative research).
• The COREQ offers a 32-item checklist that can help researchers to report important aspects of the research team, study methods, context of the study, findings, analysis and interpretations. It is particularly useful for qualitative research in which interviews and/or focus groups were conducted. You can find the COREQ here (1).
• The SRQR (Standards for Reporting Qualitative Research) offers a standard for reporting qualitative research, based on a review of different guidelines. It aims to improve the transparency of qualitative research and assist authors during manuscript preparation. You can find the SRQR here (2).
• The ENTREQ helps researchers to report a synthesis of findings from multiple qualitative studies. The ENTREQ covers multiple stages herein: searching and selecting qualitative research, quality appraisal and methods for synthesising qualitative findings. You can find the ENTREQ here (3).
Journals usually state which reporting guideline they expect you to use for your qualitative research, you can find this information in the ‘author information’ section.