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LINGUIST List 21.1860

Sat Apr 17 2010

Disc: How Should I Code Textual Responses?

Editor for this issue: Elyssa Winzeler <elyssalinguistlist.org>

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        1.    Jessica Nelson, How Should I Code Textual Responses?

Message 1: How Should I Code Textual Responses?
Date: 09-Apr-2010
From: Jessica Nelson <jessicalnelsonhotmail.com>
Subject: How Should I Code Textual Responses?
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Hi All!

I'm a graduate student in the US and I'm writing my thesis on an analysis
of surveys completed by former priests and religious (a copy of the survey
may be found here www.surveymonkey.com/s/PG5B9F5). I've also included
excerpts from two different respondents (see below). I have 10 total
responses. I can't provide access to the total survey results because it
would compromise the anonymity of the participants (at least the way that
access to the online survey is currently set up).

My intention is to perform a critical discourse analysis, but I'm unsure of
how to analyze the material to receive the most informative result. My
advisor and I have discussed coding for neutral and non-neutral statements,
with sub-categories for each, but I don't feel that the responses have more
information to offer. I have also completed a first draft of the thesis
with essentially a 'close linguistic reading' of vocabulary and sentence
structure, but I'm still not completely happy with the results. Help! :)

Sample Responses:

'There were actually numerous intertwined reasons Falling in love and
wanting to take that relationship to a public committed relationship of
marriage... probably the key factor ... however, I think the other factors
below were contributory to finding that hole in my life that only a
'relationship' could heal.'

'I found parish life very stifling... while I was incredibly effective as a
parish priest (other people’s comments to me). I found living in a
‘fishbowl’ environment where everyone was able to comment on your life
toxic. At the same time, I found myself really seeking out opportunities
for service that went way beyond the ‘typical’ parish context.'

Linguistic Field(s): Discourse Analysis

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