Meaningful Member-Checking: A Structured Approach to Member-Checking

Courtney McKim 1 *

AM J QUALITATIVE RES, Volume 7, Issue 2, pp. 41-52

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Validity is essential to establish in any qualitative research study. There are numerous approaches to establish validity. One common technique utilized to establish validity is member-checking. The goal of member-checking is to provide credibility to the data (Elo et al., 2014). Member-checking is commonly conducted by presenting data transcripts to some or all participants for feedback (Varpio et al., 2017). This process is relatively easy and requires little effort from researchers and participants. However, this process has some weaknesses. One weakness is the information gathered during member-checking. Participants typically do not provide much feedback when reviewing transcripts, and therefore relying on this approach to establish validity is questionable. Member-checking is a valuable tool, but the approach should be more structured. This paper presents a structured approach, complete with interview questions and data analysis steps, to member-checking that minimizes the weaknesses and emphasizes the strengths.

Keywords: Member-checking, trustworthiness, validity, qualitative research, consistency