The goal of both elicitation interviews and focus groups is to collect data that can be analyzed so that you can better understand beliefs or attitudes in your community that may be affecting car seat use.

If the interview is recorded with a plan to review the conversations, a professional transcription service is advised, unless budget does not allow.  We found staff time trying to transcribe was more expensive than using transcription services.  You can work with a transcription service to determine how text will be displayed for staff review.

Here is the criteria we used for transcription:

  • Interviews were transcribed by a transcription service.
  • Interview transcripts were organized in blocks of question topics, which were highlighted in bold and underlined, with each question typed in the order it was asked.
  • Additional questions asked by moderators or participants that were not in the moderator guide, were shown in italics.
  • Responses were shown in regular font.


A review of the transcripts or notes from your interviews can be informal and simple, or formal and rigorous. 


Informal and simple analysis:

  • Is a quick review of handwritten notes by the site-coordinator or members of your coalition.
  • Identifies major themes from elicitation interviews.
    • Use these themes to create additional questions for focus groups.
    • Use themes to start planning interventions.

Formal and rigorous analysis:

  • Is transcribed, cleaned up, and formatted.
  • Includes a thorough coding by multiple people, for example, staff, site coordinators, and consultants.
  • Identifies major and minor themes.
Click to see a Sample Analysis


Interviews will be transcribed by transcription service.  Interview transcripts will be organized in blocks of question topics, which are highlighted in bold/underlined font, with each question typed in the order it was asked.   Additional questions being asked by moderators or participants that were not in moderator guide will be shown in italics.  Responses will be shown in regular font.

First Review of Text

Researcher will review the transcription text carefully for understanding and interpretation of the details and themes of the discussion. Multiple readings of the text will be required to attain an understanding of the text.

Site Coordinators will read each transcript in its entirety before simple coding will be performed.

Creation of Categories, Sub-categories, and Themes

The creation of coding themes should happen only after a careful first review of the text that takes note of the key themes and meaning found in the transcription notes.

To create a coding system, the site coordinator will take three highlighters of different colors and highlight in the following method:

  • Yellow – Highlight reoccurring themes.
  • Green – Note issues that you found surprising, or points of view that contradict what you assumed.
  • Pink – Highlight text that may not be reoccurring, but that is a noteworthy quote or profound statement.

Coding Methods

  • As a result of review of text, codes will be generated (i.e. “Need for law”).
  • The code will be written in the margin next to quotations of the text.
  • Codes will be grouped according to category.
  • A consistent set of codes, categories,  and sub-categories will be used for all documents.


The interview section headings (that are in bold and underlined text on the transcripts) will be used as categories and can be used as main headings in the findings.  The more specific themes will be addressed in the sub-categories. Suitable quotes will be used to illustrate meanings and examples.


For more on presenting your qualitative data, take a look at these links: 

Qualitative software



Thank you for completing Module 5: Use Qualitative Methods to Determine How Beliefs and Culture Shape Decisions.  To make some data-driven plans to improve car seat use in your community, go to the next module.