Ethical review and qualitative research competence: guidance for reviewers and applicants.

03 January 2017

It is difficult to consider, describe or address the ethical issues particular to qualitative research without experience and understanding of the technicalities of qualitative methodologies. The Australian National Statement on the Ethical Conduct of Research Involving Humans charges researchers with a responsibility to demonstrate that they have the appropriate experience, qualifications and competence for their proposed research. Ethical review committees have the responsibility to judge claimed research competence. This paper provides practical guidance to researchers and review committees on using formal qualifications and training, explicit claims of competence, and markers of in/competence to assess qualitative research competence. Keywords: Qualitative research; ethical review; research ethics; competence; methodology