You can import interviews, journal articles, reports and any other Word documents or PDFs:
Sources are the materials that you want to analyze in NVivo—they can include articles, interviews, survey results, audio/video recordings, pictures, web pages or social media content.
To import sources, use the options on the Data tab:
Reminder: Nodes represent themes, topics, concepts, ideas, opinions or experiences. For example, you could create the node water quality and as you explore your sources (documents, PDFs, datasets, audio, video or pictures) you could code all references to water quality at the node.
If you already know what themes you are looking for (based on your literature review, for example), you can create and organize your nodes before you start coding.
It’s easy to create nodes using commands on the Ribbon—on the Create tab, in the Nodes group, click Node.
Alternatively, if you want to see what themes emerge from your sources, you can create nodes as you code.
Creating node hierarchies
Organizing your nodes into a hierarchy is an important part of the analytical process, helping you to refine your thoughts and draw connections between themes.
Add ‘child’ nodes (sub-nodes) under an existing node to create a hierarchy. You can also drag & drop or cut & paste nodes to move them around.
You can create cases manually just like creating nodes. If you want to get the most out of your cases, consider classifying them and assigning attribute values.
In List View, you can select a source then on the Create tab, in the Items group, click Create as cases—this action will create a case and code the entire source at the case node.
If you have a large number of cases, NVivo provides ways to speed up the process. For example, you could automatically create cases when you import sources, and you could then import descriptive attributes from a spreadsheet or text file. See the NVivo Help for more information.
Understanding classifications and attributes
Use classifications to record descriptive information, like demographic details, about the cases in your project.
For example, if you have interviewed people in a particular community, you may want to collect information about their age, gender and occupation—and compare their responses based on these attributes.
To work with case classifications and attributes, you need to:
1. Create a classification—for example, Person. You could also create classifications for different types of people, like students or teachers.
2. Define attributes for the classification—for example, age group and gender.
3. Create a case then classify it and assign relevant attributes values to it—for example, 60-69 and female.
4. Code content to the case. Coding is how the source content is assigned to the case.
1. In List View, select the case you want to classify.
2. On the Home tab, in the Item group, click Properties.
3. Click the Attribute Values tab then assign a classification.
4. Click the arrow in the Value field to select a value for each attribute.
If you have demographic data about your cases in a spreadsheet you can import this data and automatically classify the case nodes in your project. See the NVivo Help for more information.
Work with classification sheets
Classification sheets provide an overview of the items in a particular classification. For example, if you have created cases for interview respondents and classified them as Person, you can double-click on the classification to quickly see the spread of your respondents
You code your source materials to gather material about a topic and store it in nodes and cases.
Code at new or existing nodes
1. Open a source in Detail View.
2. Select the content that you want to code. The content you can select depends on the type of source you are working with.
There are a few different ways to code. Try:
1. Dragging the selected content to an existing node or case in List View.
2. Accessing the right-click menu—select Code Selection then choose an option.
2. Clicking options on the ribbon—on the Analyze tab, in the Coding group, choose a coding option.
4. Using keyboard shortcuts—refer to the NVivo Help for more information about shortcuts.
5. Using the Quick Coding bar (at the bottom of Detail View) to code content at existing nodes. You can create nodes and cases here too.
Make a node from a selected word
Sometimes you want to stay as close as possible to your participants’ own words. Use text taken directly from the source content to create and code at new nodes.
Select the text content you want to code then on the Analyze tab, in the Coding group, click Code In Vivo. The selected word or phrase is used to name the node and is (at the same time) coded at the node.
See what you have coded
To see what has been coded in a source, you can use options on the ribbon.
Turn on coding highlight—on the View tab in the Coding group, click Highlight, and then select a highlight option.
Turn on coding stripes—on the View tab in the Coding group, click Coding Stripes, and then select an option. Coding stripes are displayed on the right side of the source.
Open a node to explore the references
You can open a node to see related references gathered in one place. In Navigation View, click Nodes then in List View, double-click the node you want to explore.
Quick coding with Text Search queries
You can use NVivo queries to automatically code your sources based on the words or phrases they contain. This can be a useful starting point for reviewing your data. For example, you could run a Text Search query on the word fish and automatically code all occurrences. You can search for exact words, phrases or similar concepts. For example, search for fish and find trout, mullet, and crab.
To create a Text Search query—on the Query tab, in the Create group, click Text Search. Refer to the NVivo Help for more information about the options you can choose.
Quick coding based on style or structure
Interview documents can be auto coded based on style or structure—for example, if participants are all asked the same set of questions, you can auto code the interviews based on paragraph styles.
Datasets can be quickly coded based on their structure too—for example, you can auto code a survey dataset to gather all the answers to each question.
Memos are an integral part of the research process—and can be a great starting point when you come to writing-up your project. Memos are like documents and they can be linked to sources or theme and case nodes.
Annotations are like scribbled notes in the margin—they let you record comments, reminders or observations about specific content in a source or node.
Use ‘see also’ links to draw connections between items in your project. For example, you can use ‘see also’ links to point out contradictions, follow evidence or show a sequence of events.
Creating a linked memo
To create a memo that is linked to a source or node:
1. Select the source, theme node or case node in List View or open it in Detail View.
2. On the Analyze tab, in the Links group, click Memo Link, and then click Link to New Memo. The New Memo dialog box opens.
3. Enter a name for the memo.
4. (Optional) Enter a description of the memo.
5. Click OK. The memo is opened in edit mode and you can enter the content.
Adding an annotation to selected content
To create an annotation:
1. Select the content you want to annotate.
2. On the Analyze tab, in the Annotations group, click New Annotation.
3. In the Annotations tab at the bottom of Detail View, enter the annotation.
Adding a see also link
To add a see also link from content to another source:
1. Select the content you want to link from.
2. On the Analyze tab, in the Links group, click See Also Link, and then click New See Also Link.
You can use NVivo queries to:
Find and analyze the words or phrases in your sources, theme nodes, cases and relationships. You can find specific words or those that occur most frequently.
Ask questions and find patterns based on your coding, check for coding consistency among team members and review your progress.
You can work with queries using the Query tab:
Text Search Query: search for a word or phrase in your source material and view all the matches in a preview node—automatically code the content (if you want to). Display a word tree to visualize words in context:
Use queries to explore your coding
You can review and explore your coding using:
Coding Query: gathers all the coding at any combination of nodes—for example, gather and explore all content coded at water quality and tourism, or find where content coded at water quality is near content coded at tourism.
Matrix Coding Query: creates a matrix of nodes based on search criteria. For example, show me attitudes about water quality by community.
Coding Comparison Query: compares the coding of two researchers or two groups of researchers. This is useful for teams who are interested in coding consistency and the questions posed by researcher disagreement.
Compound Query: combines text and coding queries—search for specified text in or near coded content.
Group Query: finds items that are associated in a particular way with other items in your project. For example, list the theme nodes that code a selection of sources.
NVivo lets you explore your data using charts, maps, diagrams and other visualization techniques. They can help you to explore trends, test theories and make sense of what is happening in your source materials.
Create charts, maps and diagrams using options on the Explore tab:
Diagrams are illustrative tools that are generated based on your project data—a quick and easy way to represent your data visually.
Charts: Create a chart to present or explore the data in your project. For example, to see the theme nodes that code a source. You can create a chart using the Chart Wizard or while working on other areas of your project—for example, you can make a chart based on a node, case, node matrix or source that you have opened in Detail View.
Cluster analysis diagram: Group sources, theme nodes or cases that share similar words, attribute values, or coding:
Tree map diagram: Use a tree map to compare nodes by the number of references they contain. See patterns of coding in your project, or compare sources or nodes based on their attribute values.
Comparison diagram: Generate a comparison diagram to compare two cases to see what they have in common:
Explore diagram: Generate an explore diagram to show all of the items connected to a single project item. The power of this diagram is that it is dynamic, allowing you to step forward and back through your project data to explore the connections between items:
Unlike diagrams (that NVivo builds for you), maps allow you to construct the visualization yourself. Create maps at any stage of your project—from developing your research question, through analysis and developing theory to presentation of results
Mind map: Brainstorm ideas and visualize your thoughts. Once you’ve created a mind map, you can automatically turn your ideas into theme nodes.
Concept map: Define concepts, think through their connections and explore and present the connections in your theories:
Project map: Create a project map to visualize the connections between project items. For example, you could see which items are connected to a particular source:
As your project grows you can use reports to:
1. Review and revise your progress
2. Identify themes that are occurring more than others
3. Present your findings
4. Extracts allow you to export a collection of your data to a text, Excel or XML file—you can use this data for complementary analysis in other applications.
To run one of NVivo’s predefined reports:
1. In Navigation View, click Reports, and then click the Reports folder.
2. In List View, double-click the report you want to run.
The report results are displayed in Detail View: