Verbal protocol analysis (VPA) is a qualitative, process-tracing technique whereby participants think aloud while engaging in a task, arriving at a decision, or making a judgment. Verbal protocols are divided into task-relevant sequences, then content coded in an effort to better understand the cognitive processes involved in performing the activity in question (e.g., what information was used, how it was used, and in what order it was used). Although more common in fields such as cognitive science, education, consumer behavior, and human factors psychology, VPA has also proven to be a useful (albeit somewhat rare) tool in job analysis, performance appraisal, and job choice.

Conducting Verbal Protocol Analysis

Like any data collection or analysis technique, there is no best way to conduct VPA; however, the following general ...

  • Loading...
locked icon

Sign in to access this content

Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

  • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
  • Read modern, diverse business cases
  • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles