“Media” highlights

It’s been my pleasure over the past few weeks to be interviewed by both the Indiana University Center for Computer-Mediated Communication and ATLAS.ti as they worked on profiles of my research work for their newsletters.

This is quite serendipitous as we enter into the final month of writing our forthcoming book, Researching Insight, Transformation and Learning in Online Talk, which will be published by Routledge next year.

I’m teaching a course on the same topic (analyzing online conversations, essentially) in the spring at UGA, so it’s an exciting convergence of people paying attention to this kind of work.

Conversation analysis and online talk

My most recent paper with Jessica Lester and Amber Warren has been published, and this one was a long time in the making. For years now we’ve been concerned about the (perhaps over-) reliance on scripts and scaffolds to facilitate online conversations in educational contexts. Prescribing certain ways of talking together is not always the best solution, so in this piece we offer an alternate perspective on how to make sense of these conversations.

Using Conversation Analysis to Understand How Agreements, Personal Experiences, and Cognition Verbs Function in Online Discussions


Come work at UGA

The Department of Lifelong Education, Administration and Policy at the University of Georgia invites applications for a position as an Assistant Professor with expertise in Qualitative Research Methods to begin in August 2019.
The Qualitative Research program offers a PhD degree as well as an interdisciplinary certification program in qualitative research methods. Information about the department can be found at http://www.coe.uga.edu/leap.

  • Candidate is expected to contribute to the development and delivery of coursework for on-campus courses, as well as a fully online version of the exiting Graduate Certificate in Interdisciplinary Qualitative Studies.
  • Position requires teaching the equivalent of two grad-level course per semester.
  • Candidate will maintain an active research program, demonstrate effectiveness in teaching, and advising and mentor students in the Ph.D. degree in Qualitative Research and Evaluation Methodologies, as well as serve as methodologist on committees throughout the University.
  • Candidate is expected to actively seek external funding.
  • Candidate is expected to participate in faculty governance and professional service.

Required Qualifications:

  • An earned doctorate (Ph.D. or similar) at the time of employment with a specialization in Qualitative Methods or a closely related field.
  • Strong record of scholarly research in an area relevant to the Qualitative Research program.
  • Expertise and ability to teach qualitative research methods courses.
  • Ability to design and deliver online instruction.
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills.

Appointment will begin August 1, 2019.

Applicants should submit all of the following:

  • a letter of interest that addresses qualifications in the area detailed above
  • a complete resume or curriculum vitae
  • copies of published research articles
  • the names of three persons who could provide letters of reference

Transcripts and letters of reference will be required only from finalists.

All materials should be uploaded electronically to:

Questions may be addressed to the search committee chair, Dr. Kathy Roulston at roulston@uga.edu .

Applications received by October 22, 2018 are assured of full consideration.

The University of Georgia (www.uga.edu) is a land grant/sea grant institution. Its main campus is located in Athens, Georgia, 75 miles northeast of Atlanta. Athens is known for its music, art, and food as well as its accessibility to the Atlanta area (see http://www.visitathensga.com and http://www.georgia.gov).

The University of Georgia is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, ethnicity, age, genetic information, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, or protected veteran status.

Persons needing accommodations or assistance with the accessibility of materials related to this search are encouraged to contact Central HR (hrweb@uga.edu). Please do not contact the department or search committee with such requests.

It will be really helpful once I learn ATLAS.ti

Our study of the Five-Level QDA Method to teach ATLAS.ti has just been published online by the International Journal of Social Research Methodology. Here’s the abstract:

Few studies have explored approaches to teaching qualitative data analysis software (QDAS). As more researchers rely on self-teaching, more research into best practices for developing QDAS expertise is warranted. In this paper, we report our experience using the Five-Level QDA® method to guide the design of an introductory ATLAS.ti workshop. By focusing on the translation process between analytic strategies and the tactics of the software, we sought to help students harness ATLAS.ti powerfully. Using a case study and reflective practice approach, we reviewed instructional materials, observational field notes, instructor reflections, student questionnaires, and interviews to describe what happened during the workshop as well as instructor and learner perceptions of the method. For the method to be successful, methodological competence prior to training and ongoing support after training are necessary, both of which may be fostered by using community-building strategies during and after instruction. Hands-on exploration of the software components during the workshop, including demonstration of both in-progress and completed projects by the instructor and peers, can bring life to the Five-Level QDA method. While the method emphasizes that powerful use of the software requires analytic strategies to drive software tactics, learners may view the two as mutually constituting. Implications for teaching QDAS as well as the development of the Five-Level QDA method are explored.


Qualitative Research Summer Institute

I had a fantastic time at QRSI in July because of all the former and current students and colleagues who were there. The two-day course on Analyzing Online Conversations really inspired me to keep moving forward on our manuscript for Routledge, and the one-day course on Social Media and Digital Tools was a great way to inspire people to find new uses for the tools they already use every day – as well as learn a few new ones.




Learn more about your participants: “Embrace the digital turn”

This is adapted from a previous blog post in order to promote my courses at the 2018 Qualitative Research Summer Intensive in Chapel Hill this summer:

These are exciting times to be a qualitative researcher. The human experience that we seek to understand is ever evolving, and we have the opportunity to examine its ebbs and flows. Perhaps the most recent shift in our social world has been the digital turn – the layers of interaction that we engage in through smart phones, social media and other technologies.

  • Are you gaining insights not only from what your research participants tell you in interviews, but also what they do in their digital lives?

Exploring what it means to be human is no longer limited to in-person observations and interviews. Now, we can (and should!) also explore the online self and how the digital world impacts how people go about their daily lives.

In her QRSI 2018 course, Analyzing Online Conversations: A Research Framework, Trena Paulus will guide you through creating a design to better understand what is happening in these online spaces.

Technology, ever marching forward, has not only changed what it means to be human, but also what it means to engage in qualitative research. Being a researcher means knowing how to harness the power of mobile devices, cloud computing and social media culture in our inquiries.

  • Are you harnessing productivity tools in an optimal way from start to finish in your research studies?

Tools you might already use – like Dropbox, Evernote, and Google Scholar – can make us more productive in our work. Yet it can be a challenge to learn how to make these tools work together efficiently.

In her QRSI 2018 course, Using Social Media, Software, Mobile Apps and Other Digital Tools to Support Qualitative Research, Trena Paulus will demonstrate “innovative workflows” to help you put your productivity tools to good research use – from the literature review to data collection, transcription, data analysis and writing up findings.

QRSI 2018 runs from July 23-27 and will be held in Chapel Hill, NC. Information about these courses, and others, is available at http://www.researchtalk.com/qrsi-2018/

The future of QDAS, AAAL2018 and QRSI 2018

Our special issue on the future of qualitative data analysis software has been published by The Qualitative Report! A special thanks to my co-editors as well as all of the peer reviewers involved in this project.

In March I was invited to give a pre-conference workshop at the American Association of Applied Linguistics on Exploring Digital Tools for Qualitative Research. Approximately 25 participants attended, including some familiar faces from previous conferences.


Finally, ResearchTalk has posted two video introductions to the Qualitative Research Summer Intensive courses I’ll be teaching this summer. Take a look at the preview for Analyzing Online Conversations and Using Social Media, Software, Mobile Apps and other Digital Tools to Support Qualitative Research. 

Hope to see some of you in Chapel Hill in July!