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.

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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!

Introducting ATLAS 8 at UGA

Last weekend Doctoral Candidate Phillip Grant and I taught a two day, 1 credit workshop on ATLAS 8, Windows and Mac versions, framed by the Five-Level QDA Method (Woolf & Silver, 2017).

ATLAS 8 at UGA

Students in our October course.

The book was released just in time for the workshop, so we were able to talk about  strategies and tactics, translating from analytic strategies into ATLAS 8 tactics, and analytic planning. Many participants were particularly interested in literature reviews, so we were able to focus a bit on that, as well as the new features that ATLAS 8 offers such as Twitter import, working with Geodocs, and Evernote synchronization. This group will continue working with the software over the next couple of months and then submit their project files and analytic planning worksheets at the end of the semester.

At the same time, I’m teaching our program’s qualitative data analysis class and since UGA now has a site license for ATLAS 8 (and NVivo Plus 11!) I’ve been able to fully integrate the software via the Five-Level QDA method.

8420 fall 2017

For this course, we are also using my colleague Melissa Freeman’s Modes of Thinking book on qualitative analysis, which has been tremendously helpful. It is, unsurprisingly, easier to teach software in the context of a full semester course, and I look forward to comparing the two experiences in a later post.

Last week I finally submitted our special issue on the future of qualitative data analysis software to The Qualitative Report, and I’m very excited to see that become available soon. The papers were based on the KWALON conference back in August 2016 and trace the trajectory of the community from its inception, to current uses of QDAS, to future developments, including the inter-operability initiative headed by Jeanine Evers.

It’s been a productive semester so far, hope the same is true in your part of the world.

 

Special issue on DTQR now available

Re-posted from Digital Tools for Qualitative Research:

The special issue of Qualitative Inquiry based on papers from the 2015 ICQI conference are now available. Here is the abstract of our introduction, Digital Tools for Qualitative Research: Disruptions and Entanglements:

In this introduction to the special issue on digital tools for qualitative research, we focus on the intersection of new technologies and methods of inquiry, particularly as this pertains to educating the next generation of scholars. Selected papers from the 2015 International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry special strand on digital tools for qualitative research are brought together here to explore, among other things, blogging as a tool for meaning-making, social media as a data source, data analysis software for engaging in postmodern pastiche and for supporting complex teams, cell phone application design to optimize data collection, and lessons from interactive digital art that pertain to the use of digital tools in qualitative research. This collection disrupts common conceptions (and persistent misconceptions) about the relationship between digital tools and qualitative research and illustrates the entanglements that occur whenever humans intersect with the nonhuman, the human-made, or other humans.

Thank you to all of the authors for their hard work on these papers! They include Jessica MacLaren, Lorena Georgiadou, Jan Bradford, Caitlin Byrne, Amana Marie LeBlanc, Jaewoo Do, Lisa Yamagata-Lynch, Karla Eisen, Cynthia Robins, Judy Davidson, Shanna Rose Thompson, Andrew Harris and Kristi Jackson.

Report from Corvallis

I thoroughly enjoyed my time on the Oregon State University campus for the First Corvallis ATLAS.ti Summer Workshop Series. The participants were motivated, engaged, and fun to work with, and it was wonderful to have a chance to connect with Nick Woolf, Chris Silver, Paul Mihas, Susanne Friese, Eve Weiss and Ricardo Contreras.

My topic was “ATLAS.ti across the research process” during which we talked about using the software to do literature reviews, interface with citation management systems, analyze Twitter data, import from Evernote and the iPad app, and much more.

We all hope that this becomes an annual event!