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Advanced Qualitative Data Analysis

Marie-Hélène Paré

Universitat Oberta de Catalunya

Marie-Hélène Paré teaches qualitative research methods at the Open University of Catalonia (UOC) and is a freelance methodologist in qualitative data analysis.

She was educated in Quebec, Beirut and Oxford where she read social work. A clinician by training, she worked as a mental health officer in humanitarian missions for MSF, MDM and UNWRA in psychosocial aid programs for survivors of war trauma in East Africa and the Middle East. Her clinical work led her to research the harm that INGOs can do in the name of doing good when imposing Western paradigms in culturally and politically different contexts.

She is an NVivo Certified Platinum Trainer and is part of the NVivo Academy training team for the NVivo online courses. Marie-Hélène is a sought-after methodologist, having taught qualitative data analysis in more than fifty universities and research centres worldwide, including universities in Qatar and Iran.

Since 2009, she teaches the introductory and advanced courses in qualitative data analysis at the ECPR Methods Schools and teaches similar courses the IPSA-NUS Summer School in Singapore. Her methodological interests span from advances in qualitative data analysis, qualitative systematic reviews, postcolonial epistemology and participatory methodologies. You can read more about Marie-Hélène here.


Course Dates and Times

Monday 16 ꟷ Friday 20 August 2021
2 hours of live teaching per day
08:30am - 10:30am CET

Prerequisite Knowledge

Being an advanced course, you must possess a solid conceptual grounding in the foundations of qualitative analysis and have experience in coding and analysing data in NVivo.

The latter includes creating codes and relationships, working with cases and attributes, creating sets, running matrix coding query, generating a project map, building a framework matrix and running cluster analysis.  

The course uses the latest version of NVivo (version R1) for Mac and Windows. Given that NVivo for Mac currently does not have all the features of NVivo for Windows, if you are a Mac user and want to learn all the features that will be taught at the course, you must attend the course using a PC. You can download the 14-day free trial of NVivo for Mac or Windows here.

Short Outline

This seminar-type course provides a highly interactive online teaching and learning environment, using state of the art online pedagogical tools. It is designed specifically for a demanding audience (researchers, professional analysts, advanced students) and is capped at a maximum of 12 participants so that the Instructor can cater to the specific needs of each individual participant.

Purpose of the course

This course teaches how to conduct four methods of qualitative analysis that are very popular, and widely used, in the social sciences using NVivo.

You will learn to conduct qualitative content analysis, thematic analysis, cross-case analysis and grounded theory. On the last day of the course, we look at method integration, that is the possibility to integrate components of the four methods in a single study. At the end of this course, you will be able to:

  1. Describe the aim, objectives, and expected outcomes of the above four methods
  2. Demonstrate how each method suits a given research question
  3. Implement each method’s coding and analysis procedures in NVivo
  4. Generate graphic displays that match each method’s style
  5. Appraise the quality of qualitative studies that used the four methods
  6. Propose situations where methods integration is feasible.
ECTS Credits

3 credits Engage fully with class activities 
4 credits Complete a post-class assignment

Long Course Outline

Key topics covered

This course provides participants with advanced understanding and applied skills in conducting qualitative content analysis (Schreier, 2012), thematic analysis (Boyatzis, 1998), cross-case analysis (Miles and Huberman, 1994) and grounded theory (Strauss and Corbin, 1998) using NVivo.

The course fills a critical gap in both the scholarly literature and in graduate training by providing step-by-step guidance in how to choose sampling, code data, conduct analysis and present findings of the four methods in a CAQDAS environment.

The first four days are dedicated to the four methods where we review each method’s epistemological foundations and sampling requirements. We then proceed in NVivo and implement each method’s coding procedures, pattern seeking techniques and visualisation styles.

On the last day of the course, we look at the possibility of integrating different components of the five methods in a single study, thus illustrating the promises, but also the potential pitfalls, of method integration.

The course ends with a workshop where you will critically review the criteria published thus far in the qualitative literature for assessing the quality of qualitative analysis, and put forward recommendations for reporting this phase of qualitative research in theses or articles.

Outside class hours, you will have the opportunity to discuss the course content and address troubleshooting issues you might have with the course teaching assistant.  

How the course will work online

The course combines pre-course assignments, such as readings which will be provided beforehand and pre-recorded videos, as well as daily two hour live lectures in Zoom, where the Instructor and participants will interact in real-time.

To prevent Zoom fatigue and boredom, the course pedagogy includes small group work, short focused tasks and troubleshooting exercises using a range of online apps that support collective work and participant engagement with the course content.

Additional Information


This course description may be subject to subsequent adaptations (e.g. taking into account new developments in the field, participant demands, group size, etc). Registered participants will be informed at the time of change.

By registering for this course, you confirm that you possess the knowledge required to follow it. The instructor will not teach these prerequisite items. If in doubt, please contact us before registering.