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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS: QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS OF QUESTIONS POSED BY FAMILY AND FRIENDS ON AN ONLINE STROKE DISCUSSION FORUM.
Background and Aims
Online resources are becoming increasingly relevant to stroke survivors and their social networks. Central to these social networks are stroke survivor’s family and friends. This study's aim is to develop a systematic method for categorising questions posed by users on online discussion boards to facilitate the critical analysis of this information and to identify the most frequently asked category of question posed by the family and friends of stroke survivors.
This study used a two-stage approach. First, quantitative content analysis of a small sample of posts made on the “r/stroke” reddit forum (N = 200) were analysed to create an objective and systematic method for classifying posts. Second, a large sample of posts made on the “r/stroke” reddit forum (N = 2000) were assessed using the methods generated in the first stage. Posts made by friends and/or families were identified using explicit reference to the relationship between the author and subject of the post.
Results from the initial sample (N = 200) indicated that family and friends were key contributors to the chosen forum (nv= 89). Within the valid sample, posts concerning Fathers (40%) and Mothers (20%) were the most common. 10 unique categories of questions were identified including requests for: Experiential Insights (29%); Recovery Chances/Duration (27%) and Recovery Advice (21%).
Preliminary results indicate that family and friends utilise online stroke forums as a means of gaining reassurance. This is evidenced by the higher number of posts which seek experiential insights and information regarding recovery chances and duration over practical recovery advice.