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The PhD dissertation is one of the hardest milestones to achieve. It demands long term commitment, dedication and hard work to be completed. Selection of a narrow topic, defining the objectives, collecting data for exploring the relationship between variables, and analysing or interpreting patterns in the raw data is a step by step description of the PhD dissertation writing process. Students can use different guides if they feel difficulties in any step of the dissertation writing. However, the data analysis process is a bit technical, and this article at Reno Article focuses on some queries that students often ask about this analysis. Thus, to guide students about the process of this analysis and the frequently asked queries:

  • What are discourse analyses, and give examples?
  • What is the main focus of this data analysis?
  • What are the four steps of conducting a discourse analysis method for a PhD dissertation?
  • What are the advantages one may get by conducting data analysis by using discourse techniques for PhD research?
  • What are the disadvantages of discourse analysis?

1. Discourse Analyses and Examples:

It is a research method that aims to study the written and spoken language in the context of the social sciences. It helps researchers understand how the language of the body of the data can be used in real-life situations. Stated another way, it is a more recent qualitative research method used to study public relations communication. According to Daymon and Hollowatyy, this analysis studies language from three aspects:

  • The form and content of the language used
  • The traditional ways people convey their ideas and messages
  • The organisational and institutional basis of communication methods.

The following example will further improve the understanding of the discourse analysis. Suppose you hire PhD dissertation writing services and it aims to explore the public relations rhetoric of business by studying the effect of the regime changes from a dictatorship to a democracy. In this case, the discourse analysis will help you compare the results with your research based on the rhetoric of the political regimes and ideology.

2. What is the main focus of this type of data analysis?

The previous section explained the discourse analysis with the help of an example. Once you understand what type of analysis discourse is? The next thing to be considered is when to use it? The following is a brief list of the purposes of this analysis (if your PhD dissertation goals match the purpose of discourse data analysis, you can surely opt for it).

  • It explains the purpose and effect of different types of languages.
  • It is good for exploring cultural rules and communicational conventions.
  • Traditions or modern ways of communicating values, assumptions and brief.
  • It links the communication method or language used with historical, social, and political context.

3. What are the four steps of conducting a discourse analysis method for a PhD dissertation?

Discourse analysis is an interpretive and qualitative method of text analysis. Contextual knowledge and details of the material help researchers conduct a discourse analysis. A wide range of methods and techniques are available that you can use while conducting this analysis for your PhD dissertation; concurrently, the following are some of its basic steps:

  • Start analysis by defining the research questions and selecting the content for analysis.
  • Gather information and theory relevant to the context you want to explore.
  • Observe the patterns in themes in the selected content
  • Review the results before extracting useful consequences

4. What are the advantages one may get by conducting data analysis by using discourse techniques for PhD research?

It is a recent but widespread method to explore the facts behind the data collected through interviews, focused groups and surveys. It is good for conducting research in some social sciences, such as public relations related PhD dissertation. In public relations, it is the most sought after method to explore the attitudes and perceptions that can depict an organisational image. It is a thinking and problem-solving approach, especially for qualitative research. It provides a positive social psychological critique of a given concept or phenomenon. It is flexible in terms of time, place and population. Simultaneously, researchers can uncover the motivation behind a text that further helps them solve the problems from a higher stance. The social and historical context in this type of analysis facilities researchers in understanding the meaning of the spoken and the written language in a text.

5. What are the disadvantages of discourse analysis?

The following are some disadvantages of using the discourse approach in your studies.

  1. Discourse analysis is a lengthy process that takes a large amount of time and effort.
  2. This analysis has limited application in terms of observing the facts behind the data. It solely focuses on the language used in the body of the data. Data is undoubtedly an important thing to consider in public relations, but it rarely tells the story of the trend hidden in a dataset.
  3. There are several approaches to discourse analysis. Thus, the selection of the most appropriate method is a bit difficult.
  4. It presents various options due to variations in different traditions that cause many methodological problems.
  5. It often fails to give palpable answers to problems in the light of scientific research.
  6. There are many controversial remarks about discourse analysis. Some think it is nothing more than a deconstructive reading of a text for understanding its underlying meaning.

Final thoughts:

Consequently, discourse analysis is simply the review of the text gathered through a qualitative data collection method (focused groups, interviews, and many more) to get a deeper understanding of it. It explains the purpose, convention and cultural rules of communication in the political, social and historical context. Thus, it is up to you to decide by considering the pros and cons whether you would like to choose discourse analysis for a PhD dissertation or not.

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