Memo and memoing in qualitative research: a narrative review


Tehran university


Abstract Introduction: Memoing is a logical recording of that which the researcher learns from the data. Lack of memoing in qualitative researches is a major problem which has a negative effect on the final outcome of a project. Therefore, this research was conducted with the purpose of evaluating different aspects of memoing in qualitative research. Method: This was a narrative review study performed through searching the keywords of "memo", "memoing", and "qualitative research" in databases and available printed materials related to qualitative research. Therefore, 42 books and articles published between 1978 and 2013 were reviewed. Results: A qualitative research is a developmental journey. The researcher should expect the formation of different ideas and changes in performance. These differences can be detected and affected through memoing. Memoing is a process in which events, thoughts, and their changes are recorded in chronological order according to reasons and circumstances without a specific writing style. Memoing is a kind of reflection written to consider and explain the meanings ascribed to codes related to the participants and researchers, to clarify, arrange, and develop ideas, to record important quotations or statements, and to identify relationships between codes and hypotheses related to a topic. Memos are divided into code, theoretical, and operational memos. Conclusion: Memoing is an effective tool for a rich research experience in all qualitative research methods. Qualitative researchers, through a comprehensive view of memoing, can stay true to the data and data context and increase the validity and reliability of their research.


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