BarraQDA - NvivoTools

20 Mar 2017 / Leonardo Barichello

Nvivo is the proprietary software most widely used by researchers to analyse their qualitative data. The software is very mature and offers a wide range of tools available through clicks. However, it has some problems:

  • It does not run on Linux;
  • It offers no way to extend its features;
  • It does not export to friendly formats.
  • Although most big universities offer free license to their researchers and students, Nvivo is quite expensive if you have to pay for it;
  • Finally, it is not open.

This list of reasons made me develop a software to help me organize and analyse the data I collected during my PhD research. But this post is not about my baby. Instead, I want to talk about BarraQDA - NvivoTools.

This set of tools allows you to export projects built on Nvivo to some more flexible (and open) formats. The options are RQDA (an open add-on to R that enable text coding) and a "standardized SQL format" that is coherent with current schemes for qualitative data and very user-friendly for non-experienced programmers.

Recently, I used the script to convert Nvivo to SQL to help a colleague generate a report ordered by an criteria that was not supported by Nvivo. Once exported, I opened it using SQLite Manager on Firefox and run a query doing what she needed. Lovely!

If you are stuck with Nvivo, you may consider these scripts to get some freedom if you need...

OpenQDA, an open software for qualitative data analysis

11 Nov 2016 / Leonardo Barichello

I am a user of free software since 2004 and a big enthusiast of the idea both in a practical and ideological sense. It has been more than 10 years since I do not need windows and I try to contribute with free software as often as I can.

When I realized my Ph.D research would be based on qualitative data, I noticed that I would have problems to find a free (open, libre) software to help me in the process. After some research, I decided to develop a software with one immediate and one long-term goal:

  • Help me to organize and analyse the qualitative data collected in my Ph.D. research (images);
  • Be constructed in such way that can be extended to support other typical sources of qualitative data (such as text, audio and video) in a simple and open format.

This was my background project during the last 10 months. I would say I have spent about 40 hours of coding in it and, fortunately, I was able to get to a stage where it does most of the things I need and it may be useful to other researchers. That is why I decided to make it public: https://github.com/barichello/openQDA.

It is far from a full featured software, but I am incorporating more features progressively and it can already be combined with Nvivo via the scripts developed by BarraQDA. more info here.

Hopefully, this software will evolve to a free alternative to Nvivo!



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