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Qualitative Content Analysis & Thematic Analysis with NVivo


6-7 May 2024


Elisa Volpi, UNIGE



Marie-Hélène Paré





This course introduces participants to the foundational concepts and techniques to conduct qualitative content analysis (QCA) and thematic analysis (TA) in NVivo. Through lectures, group work, recordings and hands-on exercises, participants will gain a solid conceptual grounding of both methods as well as the skills to implement each of them in NVivo. Using a step-by step approach, participants will learn the principles that guide code development, the rules that shape data coding, the techniques to transform data into findings and the best practices to present qualitative findings using visualisations. As the course won’t be recorded, participants must attend the two days in full.

Learning objectives




At the 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.



end of the course, participants will be able to:
Describe the unique characteristics of QCA and TA
Formulate research questions that suit QDA and TA
Implement each method
’s coding and analysis procedures in NVivo Present each method’s findings with visualisations
Appraise the quality of QCA and TA studies.



Day 1 Qualitative content analysis (Schreier, 2012)

QCA aims to describe the manifest and latent meaning of categories in a dataset. It typically uses secondary data – such as reports, press articles, websites, magazine ads or primary data obtained from data archives – where only sections or parts of the dataset are analysed. This is what makes QCA unique: a method that does not analyse all the data where only the passages of interest are selected and retained for analysis. Day 1 starts with a discussion about the differences between quantitative from qualitative content analysis, and then proceeds with the sampling requirements and the development of the coding frame. In NVivo, we perform the initial coding phase and conduct a reliability check to assess the adequacy of the categories. In the second part of day 1, we perform the main coding phase and run intercoder reliability. Day 1 concludes with a critical appraisal of the quality of studies that used QCA and ideas to present QCA findings using visualisations.



The key readings for day 1 are:

  • Schreier, M. (2012). Qualitative Content Analysis in Practice. London: Sage.

  • Ogresta, J., Rezo, I., Kožljan, P., Paré, M.-H., & Ajduković, M. (2020). Why Do We Drop Out?

    Typology of Dropping Out of High SchoolYouth & Society: Advanced online publication. Doi:


Day 2 Thematic analysis (Boyatzis, 1998).

Thematic analysis aims to identify relationships between themes in the data and to describe these relationships. At an advanced level, it seeks to cluster themes that are associated into second order constructs, to describe the connection between clusters, and to generate meta-themes that illustrate broad patterns in the data. Thematic analysis is almost always conducted with primary data collected by researchers where all the data are analysed. Day 2 starts with a discussion about the different approaches of TA in the literature and what distinguishes Boyatzis’ approach from the others. In NVivo, we proceed with the steps of code development, a phase that is characterised by summarising the data and looking for common themes across the dataset. We then proceed with the different techniques to conduct thematic analysis; namely, scoring themes, clustering themes and scaling themes. Day 2 concludes with a critical appraisal of the quality of studies that used TA and ideas to present TA findings using visualisations.

The key readings for day 2 are:
• Boyatzis, R. E. (1998). Transforming Qualitative Information: Thematic Analysis and Code

Development. Thousand Oaks: Sage.

• Fàbregues, S., & Paré, M.-H. (2018). Appraising the quality of mixed methods research in

nursing: A qualitative case study of nurse researchers’ views. Nursing Inquiry, e12247. doi: 10.1111/nin.12247.





This 2-day, online course runs on 6-7 May 2024 from 9:00-17:00 CET on Zoom. The course will pause from 10:30-10:45 and 15:00-15:30, and from 12:30-13:30 for lunch.








Délai d'inscription 30.04.2024
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