Types of Transcription in Qualitative Research

Transcription in Qualitative Research:

The level of transcription is always decided by the original researcher or research team and is dependent on the objectives set for the data. Transcription-level decisions are often influenced by the resources available.

Types of Transcription:

1. Gisted/Summary Transcription: Interview recordings are represented in written form only roughly, by listing or summarising main topics. Direct quotations or parts of speech are only rarely written down. Interpretation plays a big role in this kind of transcription because it is the transcriber who decides which parts are worth transcription.

2. Basic-level Transcription: Will produce a verbatim (exact) transcription of utterances but leaves out repeats, cut-offs of words and sentences, filters, and non-lexical sounds. Utterances clearly not in context can also be left out. In addition to speech, significant expressions of emotion are incorporated. Basic-level transcription can be used when the main focus is analyzing the content of speech. This is the minimum transcription level for data sharing and archiving.

3. Exact Transcription: All speech is transcribed, nothing is left out. Transcription is a verbatim, word-for-word replication of verbal data using the most common standardized notation symbols. Filters, repeats, cut-offs of words, and non-lexical sounds are incorporated in the transcription, as well as the expression of emotion and emphasis or stress. Timed pauses and possible background noises and other disturbances are noted.

Exact transcription is often used when there is the intention to analyze expression and interaction, at least to some extent. This level of transcription allows for varied and rich reuse of the data.

4. Conversion Analysis Transcription: Full verbal transcription using standardized notation symbols with careful reproductions of colloquial speech patterns. Transcription includes all words, timed pauses, cut-offs of a word, intonation, volume, word stress, as well as non-lexical action, etc.

It is the most detailed level of transcription. The goal is to represent the conversation event in as much detail as possible in textual format. Often used together with the audio and video recordings themselves.