Rejection letters are hard to take but more often than not they are based on legitimate critique.
However, from time to time it is obvious that the reviewer has little grasp of what constitutes rigour or quality in qualitative research. H.) recently submitted a paper that reported findings from a qualitative study about fertility-related knowledge and information-seeking behaviour among people of reproductive age.
Qualitative and quantitative research methods are often juxtaposed as representing two different world views.
In quantitative circles, qualitative research is commonly viewed with suspicion and considered lightweight because it involves small samples which may not be representative of the broader population, it is seen as not objective, and the results are assessed as biased by the researchers' own experiences or opinions.
The way in which parents conceptualise unused embryos and why they discard rather than donate was explored and understood via in-depth interviews, showing how and why the meaning of those embryos changed with parenthood (de Lacey, 2005).
In-depth interviews were also used to establish the intricate understanding by embryo donors and recipients of the meaning of embryo donation and the families built as a result (Goedeke , 2015).
In the rejection letter one of the reviewers (not from ) lamented, ‘Even for a qualitative study, I would expect that some form of confidence interval and paired t-tables analysis, etc. This comment reveals the reviewer's inappropriate application to qualitative research of criteria relevant only to quantitative research.
In this commentary, we give illustrative examples of questions most appropriately answered using qualitative methods and provide general advice about how to appraise the scientific rigour of qualitative studies.
In describing their responses to proposed legislative change, participants also talked about people conceived as a result of their donations, demonstrating various constructions and expectations of relationships (Kirkman , 2014).
Oral and written interviews also revealed the embarrassment and ambivalence surrounding sperm donors evident in participants in donor-assisted conception (Kirkman, 2004).