The Q method, combining qualitative and quantitative methods, refers to the qualitative analysis of Q-sorts based on quantitative techniques. It is used to research individual subjective experience, analyzing consensus and divergence to identify and categorize subjects' viewpoints. The sorting process is completely performed by the subjects, independent of study researchers. The Q method in medical research has been applied in many fields, including nursing care, clinical studies, doctor and patient's perceptions, health evaluation and decision making. The authors used the Q method to research Chinese medicine (CM) group decision making, exploring its practical feasibility in this important field. Four primary domains are addressed: (1) integration of expert opinion; (2) expert classification; (3) ascertaining the entire viewpoint orientation of a certain type of expert; and (4) comparison of expert opinion using an additional perspective. The essence of the Q method caters to the CM thinking model and should be introduced into CM and explored more deeply.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Complementary and alternative medicine
- Pharmacology (medical)
- expert experience
- famous veteran doctors of Chinese medicine
- Q method