Qualitative Methods


The Qualitative Methods RIG was established to advance the use of qualitative research and mixed methods to study problems of interest to nurse clinicians, educators, and administrators. The use of naturalistic inquiry, phenomenology, ethnography grounded theory, case study, content analysis, and other qualitative methodologies have become increasingly important to understanding the experiences of individuals, families, and groups in confronting a variety of health care issues.

Comprised of nurse researchers from around the Midwest, the Qualitative Methods RIG promotes research across nursing specialties. Members have a wide range of experiences in studying such diverse health problems as dialysis and renal transplants, obesity, Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, diabetes, mental health, genetics, palliative and end of life care. Members have also applied qualitative methods to study web-based nursing courses, the image of nursing, and perceptions of quality of care. Members are increasingly successful in obtaining small local grants as well as large, federally-funded grants to support their work, and provide a strong network for others wanting to adopt qualitative and mixed methods research designs.

Who Should Join?

Anyone who has an interest in qualitative and mixed methods methodologies to advance nursing research.

RIG Communication

Listserv address:
LinkedIn page:


Meet the RIG Leadership for 2020-2021


Lisa Burkhart, PhD, RN, MPH, ANEF
Associate Professor, Loyola University Chicago


Tanya Trotter, MSN, APRN, PHCNS-BC
PhD Candidate, University of North Dakota


Richard Clark, PhD, RN, MA
Assistant Professor, University of Louisville


Rebecca Johnson Beller, PhD, RN, MPH, ANEF
Associate Professor, University of Nebraska Medical Center

Past Chair

Cherrill Stockmann
Assistant Professor, Illinois State University

Grant Representative

Barbara Bowers, PhD, RN, FAAN
Professor and Associate Dean for Research, University of Wisconsin – Madison

Grant Representative

Briana Snyder, PhD, TN-BC, CNE
Assistant Professor, Towson University

Grant Representative

Sandra Siedlecki, PhD, RN, APRN-CNS
Senior Nurse Scientist, Cleveland Clinic

Grant Representative

Samia Abdelnabi, CNM, FNP-C
Laborist, Wayne State University

2019-2020 RIG Awards

Qualitative Methods:
Graduate Research Award
Anne W. Shagavah, BSN, MSN, CRNP
Saint Louis University

Qualitative Methods:
Graduate Research Award
Jennifer Kowalkowski, RN, MS, MPH
University of Wisconsin – Madison

Overall/Long Term Goals

  • Continue exploring networking opportunities, with a plan for two pop-ups (informal discussions done synchronously via video technology) in the next 12 months.
  • The first goal is to develop a network among MNRS members who are experts in qualitative methods to have a database of researchers for possible collaboration and mentoring.
  • The second goal is to facilitate a pre-conference workshop on qualitative methods for new nurse scientists.

Recent Activities/Highlights

  • Dr. Paul Clark partners with bedside & stretcherside pediatric nurses to develop a critical incident debriefing process and recently published an article on this topic in the Journal of Emergency Nursing.
  • Dr. Candace recently completed the 3rd revision of an evidence-based clinical practice guideline for assessing heart failure in long-term care settings with publications in the Journal of Gerontological Nursing and Series on Evidence-based Practice Guidelines.
  • Dr. Marie-Anne Rosemberg has studied occupational health and reproduction with publications in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Hygiene and the Journal of Advanced Nursing.
  • Dr. Sandra Siedlecki will be inducted as a fellow in the American Academy of nursing in October this year.

CLICK HERE to read more about the RIG Activities/Highlights.


RIG Minutes/Summary

If you are interested in learning more about the Qualitative Methods RIG, please explore the minutes from the past meetings:
Qualitative Methods RIG minutes from the 2020 Annual Research Conference.
Qualitative Methods RIG minutes from the 2019 Annual Research Conference.
Qualitative Methods RIG minutes from the 2018 Annual Research Conference.
Qualitative Methods RIG minutes from the 2017 Annual Research Conference.
Qualitative Methods RIG minutes from the 2016 Annual Research Conference.

Member in the Spotlight

Meet our Dissertation Award Winner:
Anne Winnie Shagavah, PhD, MSN, APRN, FNP-BC

My passion in maternal health was ignited during my childhood in Kenya where I witnessed the repercussions of inadequate health care. As I saw first-hand, insufficient health care services contributed to poor health outcomes, including premature deaths in women and children. I acquired knowledge on the complexities surrounding women’s and children’s health when I relocated to the US and enrolled in nursing school. During my undergraduate studies in nursing, I came to a better understanding of the importance of breastfeeding and its association to improved maternal-child health. Having being born and raised in a culture that embraced and supported breastfeeding women, I became interested in infant feeding research, especially in minority populations that have suboptimal breastfeeding rates.

My professional background in nursing began 15 years ago when I started working as a certified nursing assistant. I gradually continued my nursing education while working and going to school full time. Through the years, I have worked in different healthcare settings, including hospitals, acute rehabilitation and long-term care centers, and as a certified Family Nurse Practitioner in outpatient clinics. I have also worked as an adjunct faculty in an academic setting. This breadth of experience has given me a broad understanding of a range of roles, and healthcare needs of diverse populations.

Dr. Shagavah successfully defended her dissertation research at St. Louis University in which she explored the lived experiences of 12 African American mothers and their 13 identified family support persons residing in an urban Mid-western city located in the U.S. using an interpretative phenomenological analysis approach to gain an in-depth understanding about these families infant feeding and breastfeeding practices and negotiations.  Results suggest that African American mothers’ breastfeeding goals can be met if they are provided with multifaceted support from their families, communities, places of work, and the healthcare system.