Dependability has often been referred to as reliability in quantitative terms (Best & Kahn, 1993; Flick, 2006; Graneheim & Lundman, 2004; Lincoln & Guba, 1985).
Patton (2002, p. 546) identifies dependability as a systematic process that is followed systematically throughout the research study. It is furthermore defined as the “degree to which the reader can be convinced that the findings did indeed occur as the researcher says they did” (Van der Riet & Durrheim, 2008, p. 93). Other researchers highlight that dependability refers to the stability of the data (Graneheim & Lundman, 2004). It refers to the “internal process” that is followed throughout changing conditions and phenomena (Bradley, 1993, p. 437).
Dependability is based on the descriptions of the research findings and contexts, the research process and the research design, as in this study. However, it is also assured through a high degree of reflexivity, since it is well interlinked with the actions of the researcher and the researched.