Observation Analysis

Format for your observations of provider-patient interaction

Comm for Health Professionals

Summer 2018


  1. Begin with an overview of the event you observed
  2. Describe what you know about the provider and his/her specialization
  3. Describe what you know about the patient and his/her health problem, education, SES, etc. Include any information that is available to you about other health problems of the patient besides those that are the subject of treatment in the present encounter
  4. Describe what you know about the relationship between the two – an initial encounter, an established relationship, etc.
  5. Describe the method that you used to gather the data – where you were positioned, how you took notes or gathered information, etc. Did you have a coding form that you used?
  6. Describe the variables on which you took notes:
    1. Therapeutic vs. nontherapeutic comm
    2. Types of questions asked – types of responses yielded. Types of questions that should have been asked.
    3. Empathic statements, nonempathic statements, missed opportunities for empathy
    4. Apparent level of trust between the provider and the patient and how evidenced
    5. Nonverbals in evidence in the interaction – be as detailed as possible here
    6. Levels of self-disclosure from patient to provider and vice versa
    7. Notable examples of the dyadic nature of the interaction; reciprocity in interaction; escalations
    8. Role of culture or cultural differences in the interaction
    9. Role of silence and pauses
    10. Role of advisement
    11. Role of reflections and interpretations
    12. Use of confrontations, orders, commands
    13. Persuasive attempts used by the provider (or patient)
    14. Difficulties experienced by the provider or patient
  7. Overall commentary on the communicative interaction you observed – what was good and what was not-so-good about it
  8. Suggestions for improving the interaction you observed
  9. What you learned by doing this observation

Your analysis should be typed, double-spaced, using one inch margins and a 12 point font.  I’m guessing that most will be 5-6 pp.  Please check with me about ANY questions that you have!  Good luck!  Teri

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