Enhance Qualitative Data Analysis instruction for graduate students with self-paced video tutorials about key concepts and NVivo software

Project TitleEnhance Qualitative Data Analysis instruction for graduate students with self-paced video tutorials about key concepts and NVivo software
Principal InvestigatorJeremy Buhler
Co-InvestigatorsSarah Parker, Librarian, UBC Woodward Library
Amir Michalovich, PhD Candidate, Language & Literacy Education, Faculty of Education,
FacultyUBC Library
Funding Year2021
Project SummaryThe UBC Library Research Commons (RC) helps UBC graduate students develop research-enabling skills in data analysis, GIS, and digital scholarship. Graduate student experts in the RC teach workshops and offer one-on-one consultations to UBC researchers on a range of software and tools. This includes instruction on Computer Assisted Qualitative Data Analysis (CAQDAS) with emphasis on NVivo, software licensed by UBC IT and available at no additional cost to students, faculty, and staff.

This project will hire a UBC graduate student to create a series of short instructional videos introducing CAQDAS concepts and NVivo features. The videos will complement the RC’s existing programming with self-paced resources that can be accessed before or after face-to-face sessions, or used in UBC research methods courses. We expect the video series to improve our CAQDAS training by enhancing the synchronous workshop experience, introducing researchers to a wider range of NVivo features, and enabling self-paced learning. These and other anticipated outcomes are described in the “Project Goals” section.

The qualitative data analysis (QDA) that NVivo supports may take place in any field but is more common in health and social sciences. Within the first, predominantly qualitative phase of an AMS-funded mixed-methods research project, UBC PhD candidate and RC GAA Amir Michalovich interviewed 15 UBC graduate students about their experience with QDA and CAQDAS. Among his findings is that while students perceive CAQDAS packages like NVivo to be very useful, “most (11) utilized only the basic coding features of CAQDAS packages” because of their perceived lack of sufficient training in CAQDAS and QDA (Michalovich, 2021, p. 6). His research, including the second, predominantly quantitative phase, ultimately points to “the need not only to integrate CAQDAS into university curricula, but to integrate it with extensive QDA training” (Michalovich, 2021, p. 11).

The proposed project will help UBC researchers and instructors begin to address this broader aspiration, by providing accessible materials that demonstrate how they can go beyond “only the basic” features of CAQDAS software. Videos created through this project will be published with an open license and made available for others to use, share, and adapt. We will post materials in the Canvas Commons and embed them on RC workshop websites hosted on GitHub. (See https://ubc-library-rc.github.io/ for examples of RC workshops that use GitHub, an approach developed and refined during a TLEF-funded project in 2020.) Funds awarded through the grant will cover wages for one Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) to develop the videos under the supervision of librarians Sarah Parker and Jeremy Buhler, using software and equipment available through UBC IT or in the Research Commons Digital Scholarship Lab. The GTA will draw on Amir Michalovich’s research, feedback from past workshops and consultations, and the experience of RC employees to identify suitable topics and create a series of modular videos that support RC programming.

Reference: Michalovich, A. (2021). Graduate students’ modes of engagement in computer-assisted qualitative data analysis. International Journal of Social Research Methodology. DOI: 10.1080/13645579.2021.1879359
Grant type OER Rapid Innovation
Funded Amount $1,894

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