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Definitions of Confidentiality

  1. (noun) A research protocol in which only a researcher can identify a respondent but protects their identity.
  2. (noun) The quality of being confidential or held in secrecy.

Example of Confidentiality

Confidentiality Pronunciation

Pronunciation Usage Guide

Syllabification: con·fi·den·ti·al·i·ty

Audio Pronunciation

– American English
– British English

Phonetic Spelling

  • American English – /kahn-fuh-den-shee-Al-uh-tee/
  • British English – /kon-fid-en-shee-Al-it-ee/

International Phonetic Alphabet

  • American English – /ˌkɑnfəˌdɛnʃiˈæləti/
  • British English – /kɒnfɪdɛnʃɪˈalɪti/

Usage Notes

  • Plural: confidentialities
  • Confidentiality is not the same as anonymity. When no one including the researcher can identify a research participant, the participant is protected by anonymity, not confidentiality.
  • A researcher (adverb) confidentially assures a participant’s identity will remain (adjective) confidential and that the participants have (noun) confidentialness.

Additional Information

Related Terms

Works Consulted

Collins English Dictionary: Complete and Unabridged. 6th ed. 2003. Glasgow, Scotland: Collins.

Ferris, Kerry, and Jill Stein. 2010. The Real World: An Introduction to Sociology. 2nd ed. New York: Norton.

Jary, David, and Julia Jary. 2000. Collins Dictionary of Sociology. 3rd ed. Glasgow, Scotland: HarperCollins.

Kornblum, William. 2008. Sociology in a Changing World. 8th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth.

Oxford University Press. (N.d.) Oxford Dictionaries. (https://www.oxforddictionaries.com/).

Princeton University. 2010. WordNet. (https://wordnet.princeton.edu/).

Wikipedia contributors. (N.d.) Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation. (https://en.wikipedia.org/).

Cite the Definition of Confidentiality

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “confidentiality.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved July 18, 2024 (https://sociologydictionary.org/confidentiality/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

confidentiality. (2014). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/confidentiality/

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “confidentiality.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed July 18, 2024. https://sociologydictionary.org/confidentiality/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“confidentiality.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2014. Web. 18 Jul. 2024. <https://sociologydictionary.org/confidentiality/>.