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Content Analysis

Definition

Content analysis involves the systematic coding of information in archival records. It is a research tool used to determine the presence of certain words or concepts within a set of texts. The process of content analysis involves first selecting the texts from which the information will be gathered and then deriving the coding categories that will be used. The coding categories must be objectively defined to ensure reliability and consistency across various texts and different coders. Content analysis is most often used in exploratory and descriptive research.

Background

Historically, content analysis was a time-consuming process. Analysis was done manually, or slow mainframe computers were used to analyze punch cards containing data punched in by human coders. Single studies could employ thousands of these cards. Human error and ...

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