Discourse Analysis Research Methodology – Meaning, Uses and Procedure

02/19/2020 | George Orwell | 301

Discourse analysis is basically an analytical technique that researcher utilities for analyzing language. You can also utilize it for identifying the way people use language. The main objective of discourse analysis is to develop perception. It also intends to classify the meaning, networks, and procedure. In simple words, the main objective of discourse analysis is to categorize the data.  Another objective is to help in the extraction of meaningful information from it. This type of analysis mainly emphasizes on negotiation, change, and production of meaning.

It is basically a qualitative research technique which mainly utilizes in the field of humanities and social science. Material which researcher use for performing discourse analysis include books, newspaper, etc. You can perform discourse analysis for developing an in-depth understanding of various aspects of communication. Discourse analysis mainly emphasizes on the contextual meaning of language. Discourse analysis is basically an analytical procedure that mainly involves criticizing and deconstructions language that researcher utilizes in a social context.

For example:Suppose researcher conduct research in medical field for determining whether misunderstanding has taken place between doctor and patients or not. Researcher has organize interview   for gathering the information about the experience and feeling of woman in relation to diagnosis of breast cancer.

While performing discourse analysis in research you need to mainly emphasize on

  • Objective and impact of different kinds of languages.
  • Code of conduct in specific culture and principles in the context of communication.
  • The way believes ideas and opinions are communicated
  • The way people use language  in relation to historical, political and social contexts.

Uses of discourse analysis

You can perform discourse analysis for developing an understanding of the functions of language. It can be useful in terms of analyzing the way meaning is generated in various social contexts. By performing the discourse analysis you can gain knowledge about the different social groups. You will be able to develop an understanding of the way they communicate. Discourse basically the type of research technique that you can use for analyzing the large volume of material. You can also apply it to smaller samples all things depend on the aims, objectives, and time period of investigation.

Sources which you can analyze at the different communication level

Level of communication  Things that could be analyzed
languageThis includes analysis of phrases or words
sentence structureFramework of text
language rulesIt involves the analysis of the way you structure different sentences.
Genre It involves an analysis of political speeches.
Non- verbal communicationIt includes analysis of gesture, voice, tone, volume, pauses
Code which people  for conversationConversation between people, the response of the listener.

4 Steps for discourse analysis


The different phases involved in discourse analysis are:

Step 1. Designingresearch question and selecting content for analysis

before beginning to perform discourse analysis in research you need to identify the research question for which you want to get answers. After that, you need to define the same. This means that after formulating research questions you need to choose different materials that could be helpful in getting answers.

For example: Suppose, you perform research for developing the understanding of the way particular transformation of dictatorship to democracy that influence the businesses. You for collecting the information about the same can emphasize on identification of mission. In addition to this, you will also need to analyze the marketing material such as a brochure, advertisement of five largest organizations after the transformation in management system.

Step 2. Collection of facts and hypothesis on the context:

it is a phase where you need to gather detailed information about the sources of content. Other details that you will need to gather about content include the name of the author, information about publication and publisher, etc. You can do the Construction of a theoretical framework and write a literature review can as this strategy will help you in supporting your analysis.

For example, you are performing an investigation on the history and politics of the nation. You are collecting the information about history and politics meantime you are conducting research on businesses. You are also performing a study on analyzing the relationship between government and businesses.

Step 3. Analysis of content for designing themes

It is the stage in discourse analysis where you need to closely analyze the various components and aspects of material like every word, sentence, paragraph. After analyzing the material closely you need to relate them with the themes or research questions.

Example, using the above example where the research on history and politics in the country has been performed. At this phase if you are using the newspaper as a material then you have to closely analyze each sentence, text and opinion of people about the topic.

Step 4. Reviewing outcome and Making a conclusion

At this phase of discourse analysis in research, you need to express your opinion about the Research findings of the investigation. It is the strategy that will help you in analyzing the meaning and functions of language. It is a stage you need to review the analysis which you have to perform in terms of a wide context.

Example: Research on history and politics of nation,  results reveals that the article which was published before transformation in management system states that there is a need for change.  Whereas, it has been found by material published after changes in the regime that  there is need for transformation for providing high value to customers.

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