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How to reference interviews/research data
Interviews and other research data
Data obtained through your research is not cited in the same way as other data in order to protect the identity of the participants. Any research data discussed in a project or thesis should not in any way identify the participants, either directly or incidentally (such as identifying the school where the research was conducted). Refer to participants by identifiers other than their names, such as:
- their roles (e.g., participant, teacher, counsellor, student, patient),
- pseudonyms or nicknames,
- descriptive phrases,
- case numbers, or
- letters of the alphabet
Treat quotations from interviews or surveys in the same way as other quotations. Explain within the text that the data is from research participants. A quotation less than 40 words is quoted within a sentence. A quotation longer than 40 words is formatted as a block quotation. Here are a few examples of how participant data might be presented in the text. The most appropriate presentation will depend on context.
- One respondent stated she had employed various classroom management techniques in order to manage her class.
- “Madge,” a 45-year-old teacher, used various classroom management strategies. “I think a positive classroom environment is critically important,” she said.
- MJ, an Australian teacher, said that “a positive classroom environment” was very important.
- Case 24 commented on the need for a positive classroom environment.
- Participant M said she varies her classroom management strategies in order to achieve a positive classroom environment.