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Content Analysis

Content Analysis
An Introduction to Its Methodology

Fourth Edition

April 2018 | 472 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

What matters in people’s social lives? What motivates and inspires our society? How do we enact what we know?

Since the first edition published in 1980, Content Analysis has helped shape and define the field. In the highly anticipated Fourth Edition, award-winning scholar and author Klaus Krippendorff introduces readers to the most current method of analyzing the textual fabric of contemporary society. Students and scholars will learn to treat data not as physical events but as communications that are created and disseminated to be seen, read, interpreted, enacted, and reflected upon according to the meanings they have for their recipients. Interpreting communications as texts in the contexts of their social uses distinguishes content analysis from other empirical methods of inquiry.

Organized into three parts, Content Analysis first examines the conceptual aspects of content analysis, then discusses components such as unitizing and sampling, and concludes by showing readers how to trace the analytical paths and apply evaluative techniques. The Fourth Edition has been completely revised to offer readers the most current techniques and research on content analysis, including new information on reliability and social media. Readers will also gain practical advice and experience for teaching academic and commercial researchers how to conduct content analysis. 

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Part I. Conceptualizing Content Analysis
Chapter 1. History
Some Precursors  
Quantitative Newspaper Analysis  
Early Content Analysis  
Propaganda Analysis  
Content Analysis Generalized  
Computer Text Analysis  
Qualitative Approaches  
Chapter 2. Conceptual Foundation
Epistemological Elaborations  
Contrasts and Comparisons  
Chapter 3. Uses and Inferences
Traditional Overviews  
Indices and Symptoms  
Linguistic Re-Presentations  
Institutional Processes  
Areas of Likely Success  
Part II. Components of Content Analysis
Chapter 4. The Logic of Content Analysis Designs
Content Analysis Designs  
Designs Preparatory to Content Analysis  
Designs Going Beyond Content Analysis  
Chapter 5. Unitizing
Types of Units  
Ways of Defining Units  
Productivity, Efficiency, and Reliability  
Chapter 6. Sampling
Sampling in Theory  
Sampling Techniques Applicable to Texts  
Sample Size  
Chapter 7. Recording/Coding
The Function of Coding and Recording  
Coder Qualifications  
Coder Training  
Approaches to Defining the Semantics of Data  
Chapter 8. Data Languages
The Place of Data Languages in Analytical Efforts  
Nominal Variables  
Mathematical Operations  
Chapter 9. Analytical Constructs
The Role of Analytical Constructs  
Sources of Certainty  
Types of Constructs  
Sources of Uncertainty  
Part III. Analytical Paths and Evaluative Techniques
Chapter 10. Analytical/Representational Techniques
Cross-Tabulations, Associations, and Correlations  
Multivariate Techniques  
Factor Analysis and Multidimensional Scaling  
Images, Portrayals, Semantic Nodes, and Profiles  
Contingencies and Contingency Analysis  
Chapter 11. Computer Aids
What Computers Do  
How Computers Can Aid Content Analyses  
Text Analyses  
Computational Content Analyses  
Qualitative Data Analysis Support  
Chapter 12. Reliability
Why Reliability?  
Reliability Designs  
Agreement when Coding Predefined Units  
Accuracy, Surrogacy and the Reliability of Crowds  
The Reliability of Information Retrievals and Content Mining  
Agreement when Unitizing and Coding Finite Continua  
Agreement for Multi-Valued Coding  
Statistical Properties of a  
Chapter 13. Validity
Validity Defined  
A Typology for Validating Evidence  
Chapter 14. A Practical Guide
Designing an Analysis  
Writing a Research Proposal  
Applying the Research Design  
Narrating the Results  
Key features
  • An updated formula for computing the reliability of unitizations helps researchers standardize the units of text on which coders work and reduce coding errors.
  • A new section on crowdsourcing shows readers how to measure the accuracy, surrogacy, and reliability of crowds.
  • New discussions around social media show readers how computer-aided text has impacted the ways society examines itself.  
  • Several dimensions of Krippendorff’s Alpha have been expanded for assessing the reliability of crowdcoding, multi-valued coding of predefined units, and unitized textual continua. 
  • During the 38 years it has been in print, this award-winning text has pioneered the development of content analysis and continues to shape the field with each new edition. It has been widely adopted as a text in social science, humanities, and business curricula, served researchers as a guide for the design and execution of large and small content analyses, and provided epistemologically sound standards for justifying as well as critically evaluating content analysis findings.
  • Winner of the International Communication Association’s Fellows Book Award for its lasting contribution to the advancement of communication studies, this market leader has taught generations of social scientists about the methodology of the research and has been translated into seven different languages.
  • Gaining an enormous following, author Klaus Krippendorff’s work on content analysis was honored with the first methodological innovation award from the Mass Communication Division of International Communication Association.
  • References to The Content Analysis Reader provide easy access to canonical examples to enrich the reader's experience.
  • Krippendorff condenses the methodological requirements and conceptual opportunities of content and text analysis into a practical guide, incorporating his experiences as researcher, teacher, and consultant to academic and commercial projects, and providing readers with a useful entry into the use of the research method.
  • A glossary of technical terms provides a further understanding of relevant concepts.

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ISBN: 9781506395661