• We are sorry, but NCBI web applications do not support your browser and may not function properly. More information
Logo of straninfSexually Transmitted InfectionsCurrent TOCInstructions for authors
Sex Transm Infect. Apr 2002; 78(2): 87–89.
PMCID: PMC1744432

The application of qualitative research methods to the study of sexually transmitted infections


Qualitative methods have gained support in health sciences research and have a role to play in STI studies. This article reviews the main techniques used by qualitative researchers, with illustrations taken from the field of STIs.

Full Text

The Full Text of this article is available as a PDF (78K).

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Pope C, Mays N. Reaching the parts other methods cannot reach: an introduction to qualitative methods in health and health services research. BMJ. 1995 Jul 1;311(6996):42–45. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Mays N, Pope C. Rigour and qualitative research. BMJ. 1995 Jul 8;311(6997):109–112. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Day S. Choosing and using services for sexual health: women's views. Sex Transm Infect. 2001 Oct;77(5):305–306. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Malterud K. Qualitative research: standards, challenges, and guidelines. Lancet. 2001 Aug 11;358(9280):483–488. [PubMed]
  • Seal DW, Ehrhardt AA. Heterosexual men's attitudes toward the female condom. AIDS Educ Prev. 1999 Apr;11(2):93–106. [PubMed]
  • Dixon-Woods M, Stokes T, Young B, Phelps K, Windridge K, Shukla R. Choosing and using services for sexual health: a qualitative study of women's views. Sex Transm Infect. 2001 Oct;77(5):335–339. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Quirk A, Rhodes T, Stimson GV. 'Unsafe protected sex': qualitative insights on measures of sexual risk. AIDS Care. 1998 Feb;10(1):105–114. [PubMed]
  • Manhart LE, Dialmy A, Ryan CA, Mahjour J. Sexually transmitted diseases in Morocco: gender influences on prevention and health care seeking behavior. Soc Sci Med. 2000 May;50(10):1369–1383. [PubMed]
  • Gifford SM, Bakopanos C, Dawson MT, Yesilyurt Z. Risking for protection: discourses around 'safe sex' among Chilean, Turkish and second-generation Greek women living in Melbourne, Australia. Ethn Health. 1998 Feb-May;3(1-2):95–116. [PubMed]
  • Reddy P, Meyer-Weitz A, van den Borne B, Kok G, Weijts W. The learning curve: health education in STI clinics in South Africa. Soc Sci Med. 1998 Nov;47(10):1445–1453. [PubMed]
  • Nuwaha F, Faxelid E, Neema S, Eriksson C, Höjer B. Psychosocial determinants for sexual partner referral in Uganda: qualitative results. Int J STD AIDS. 2000 Mar;11(3):156–161. [PubMed]
  • French R, Power R, Mitchell S. An evaluation of peer-led STD/HIV prevention work in a public sex environment. AIDS Care. 2000 Apr;12(2):225–234. [PubMed]
  • Grund JP, Kaplan CD, Adriaans NF, Blanken P. Drug sharing and HIV transmission risks: the practice of frontloading in the Dutch injecting drug user population. J Psychoactive Drugs. 1991 Jan-Mar;23(1):1–10. [PubMed]
  • Power R. The role of qualitative research in HIV/AIDS. AIDS. 1998 May 7;12(7):687–695. [PubMed]
  • Martin MA, Rissmiller P, Beal JA. Health-illness beliefs and practices of Haitians with HIV disease living in Boston. J Assoc Nurses AIDS Care. 1995 Nov-Dec;6(6):45–53. [PubMed]
  • Caprara A, Seri D, De Gregorio GC, Parenzi A, Salazar CM, Gozé T. The perception of AIDS in the Bété and Baoulé of the Ivory Coast. Soc Sci Med. 1993 May;36(9):1229–1235. [PubMed]
  • Donovan C, Mearns C, McEwan R, Sugden N. A review of the HIV-related sexual behaviour of gay men and men who have sex with men. AIDS Care. 1994;6(5):605–624. [PubMed]
  • Cohen E, Navaline H, Metzger D. High-risk behaviors for HIV: a comparison between crack-abusing and opioid-abusing African-American women. J Psychoactive Drugs. 1994 Jul-Sep;26(3):233–241. [PubMed]
  • Caplehorn JR, Saunders JB. Factors associated with heroin users' AIDS risk-taking behaviours. Aust J Public Health. 1993 Mar;17(1):13–17. [PubMed]
  • Moneyham L, Seals B, Demi A, Sowell R, Cohen L, Guillory J. Experiences of disclosure in women infected with HIV. Health Care Women Int. 1996 May-Jun;17(3):209–221. [PubMed]
  • Watt RG, Croucher R. Dentists' perceptions of HIV/AIDS as an occupational hazard: a qualitative investigation. Int Dent J. 1991 Oct;41(5):259–264. [PubMed]
  • Corby NH, Wolitski RJ, Thornton-Johnson S, Tanner WM. AIDS knowledge, perception of risk, and behaviors among female sex partners of injection drug users. AIDS Educ Prev. 1991 Winter;3(4):353–366. [PubMed]
  • Duncan B, Hart G, Scoular A, Bigrigg A. Qualitative analysis of psychosocial impact of diagnosis of Chlamydia trachomatis: implications for screening. BMJ. 2001 Jan 27;322(7280):195–199. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Kahn RH, Moseley KE, Johnson G, Farley TA. Potential for community-based screening, treatment, and antibiotic prophylaxis for syphilis prevention. Sex Transm Dis. 2000 Apr;27(4):188–192. [PubMed]
  • Rhodes T, Stimson GV, Fitch C, Ball A, Renton A. Rapid assessment, injecting drug use, and public health. Lancet. 1999 Jul 3;354(9172):65–68. [PubMed]
  • Beardsell S, Coyle A. A review of research on the nature and quality of HIV testing services: a proposal for process-based studies. Soc Sci Med. 1996 Mar;42(5):733–743. [PubMed]
  • Oakley A, Fullerton D, Holland J. Behavioural interventions for HIV/AIDS prevention. AIDS. 1995 May;9(5):479–486. [PubMed]
  • Stephenson J, Imrie J. Why do we need randomised controlled trials to assess behavioural interventions? BMJ. 1998 Feb 21;316(7131):611–613. [PMC free article] [PubMed]
  • Crosby RA, Newman D, Kamb ML, Zenilman J, Douglas JMJr, Iatesta M. Misconceptions about STD-protective behavior. Project RESPECT Study Group. Am J Prev Med. 2000 Oct;19(3):167–173. [PubMed]
  • Hoffman V, Cohen D. A night with Venus: partner assessments and high-risk sexual encounters. AIDS Care. 1999 Oct;11(5):555–566. [PubMed]
  • Greenhalgh T, Hurwitz B. Narrative based medicine: why study narrative? BMJ. 1999 Jan 2;318(7175):48–50. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from Sexually Transmitted Infections are provided here courtesy of BMJ Group


Related citations in PubMed

See reviews...See all...

Cited by other articles in PMC

See all...


  • PubMed
    PubMed citations for these articles

Recent Activity

Your browsing activity is empty.

Activity recording is turned off.

Turn recording back on

See more...