Meta-synthesis of Qualitative Research

  • Angela J. DawsonEmail author
Reference work entry


A meta-synthesis of qualitative health research is a structured approach to analyzing primary data across the findings sections of published peer-reviewed papers reporting qualitative research. A meta-synthesis of qualitative research provides evidence for health care and service decision-making to inform improvements in both policy and practice. This chapter will provide an outline of the purpose of the meta-synthesis of qualitative health research, a historical overview, and insights into the value of knowledge generated from this approach. Reflective activities and references to examples from the literature will enable readers to:
  • Summarize methodological approaches that can be applied to the analysis of qualitative research.

  • Define the scope of and review question for a meta-synthesis of qualitative research.

  • Undertake a systematic literature search using standard tools and frameworks.

  • Examine critical appraisal tools for assessing the quality of research papers.


Meta-synthesis Qualitative research synthesis Systematic review Meta-ethnography Meta-summary Narrative synthesis 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Australian Centre for Public and Population Health ResearchUniversity of Technology SydneySydneyAustralia

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