Background: Qualitative syntheses have the potential to offer a great deal of insight into complex problems of practice. However, their methods often appear unclear and warrant ongoing scrutiny by the research community. Aim: This study introduces a novel combination of methods for synthesizing qualitative literature and explores the utility of these methods through a worked example of a real-world problem of practice. Methods: Qualitative studies that investigated barriers to adoption of wellness programs through the perspectives of key informants were systematically collected for synthesis. Key informants were identified as decision makers at small- to medium-sized businesses. The primary method used in this study was the Best-Fit Framework Synthesis (BFS). The BFS was augmented with Alignment Scores, CERQual Analysis, and a novel Saturation of Inquisition Test. Dedoose software was used to support data analysis. Results: The systematic search returned 4 studies that met the inclusion criteria. Diffusion Theory was systematically selected to develop a framework for analyzing qualitative findings. The synthesis generated four analytical themes and led to the development of a contextually rich conceptual framework. Analytical themes deeply informed the research questions while the framework offered a broader view of the overall problem. CERQual Analysis provided an added dimension of ranking amongst findings based on their level of confidence. The Saturation of Inquisition Test identified gaps in current research and validated decisions made during the synthesis. Alignment Scores identified specific points of misalignment and supported decision-making during the synthesis. Conclusion: The augmented BFS was a valuable method for synthesizing qualitative findings in a manner that informs practitioners and builds on relevant theory. The additional methods integrated seamlessly with the original BFS while enhancing transparency, reliability, and practical value of the synthesis. Further replication and critical evaluation of the overall methodology and its individual components is warranted.
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Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
College of Education and Human Performance
Teach Learn & Ldrshp, Schl of
Curriculum and Instruction
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Oliver, Dalton, "Barriers to Adoption of Wellness Programs: A Worked Example of an Augmented Best-Fit Framework Synthesis" (2017). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 5376.