Use of qualitative methods across the software development lifecycle in health informatics

Elizabeth M. Borycki, Mowafa Househ, Andre W. Kushniruk, Craig Kuziemsky

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contribution

9 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper the authors review and discuss four different qualitative approaches as they are used to evaluate health information systems: (1) grounded theory, (2) ethnography, (3) verbal protocol analysis/usability engineering and (4) action research. The authors describe the historical origins, current uses, strengths and weakness of the three qualitative methodologies that are frequently used in health informatics and they discuss an emerging approach: action research. More importantly, they identify how each of the approaches can be used across the SDLC to inform planning, analysis, design, implementation and support of health information systems.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational perspectives in health informatics
EditorsElizabeth M. Borycki, John A. Bartle-Clar, Mowafa S. Househ, Craig E. Kuziemsky, Ellen G. Schraa
Place of PublicationAmsterdam, Netherlands
PublisherIOS Press
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781607507093
ISBN (Print)9781607507086
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes
EventInformation Technology and Communications in Health, ITCH 2011 - Victoria, BC, Canada
Duration: 24 Feb 201127 Feb 2011

Publication series

NameStudies in health technology and informatics
PublisherIOS Press
ISSN (Print)0926-9630
ISSN (Electronic)1879-8365


OtherInformation Technology and Communications in Health, ITCH 2011
CityVictoria, BC


  • grounded theory
  • ethnography
  • usability engineering
  • verbal protocol analysis
  • action research
  • qualitative methods
  • software development lifecycle
  • evaluation


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