One day workshop about
Qualitative Data Analysis
Using Atlas.ti 7
Seyed Abdorreza Payambarpour
University Technology Malaysia (UTM)
Why do Qualitative research?
Qualitative research methods are designed to help researchers understand:
• people and what they say and do.
• The social and cultural contexts within which people live.
It allows a researchers to See and Understand the Context within which
decisions and actions take place.
Qualitative researchers argue that if you want to understand people’s
motivations, their reasons, their actions, and the context for their beliefs and
actions in an in-depth way, qualitative research is best (Michael D. Myers,
Qualitative Vs. Quantitative
“A focus on Text”
Case study research
“A focus on numbers”
SEM (CB or PLS)
Narrative and metaphor
Source: Michael D. Myers, 2009
What is Atlas.ti?
Atlas.ti is a computer program used mostly, but not exclusively, in qualitative
research or qualitative data analysis.
• The purpose of ATLAS.ti is to help researchers uncover and
systematically analyze complex phenomena hidden in unstructured data
(text, multimedia, geospatial).
• The program provides tools that let the user locate, code, and annotate
findings in primary data material, to weigh and evaluate their importance,
and to visualize the often complex relations between them.
• ATLAS.ti consolidates large volumes of documents and keeps track of all
notes, annotations, codes and memos in all fields that require close study
and analysis of primary material consisting of text, images, audio, video,
and geo data.
Download the latest version of software through:
Hermeneutic Unit (HU)
A database containing all data, quotes, codes, output, and so on that is
associated with a research project.
Primary Document (PD)
A data file that can be assigned to a HU.
Starting a project
The first time you run the software, you will be promoted with a
“welcome HU” by Atlas.ti
Next time you run Atlas.ti, you will be promoted with the last saved HU
Create a new folder for a project (anywhere on your computer)
Move the original documents (they will be PDs) into the same folder
Create an HU file in the same folder
To add new P-Docs
• Add Documents (My library) => To do your owned work.
• Add Documents (Team library) => To do team work and trace the work
of your colleagues.
Always use “ Save copy Bundle” after any change.
How to view different P-Docs?
• Loading up to four documents simultaneously.
• Allows to conduct rich comparative analysis.
How to create Codes and Quotations?
The Inductive- Deductive approaches of coding
You are not forced into a deductive or an inductive approach.
Commonly people combine both approaches.
How to create Quotations and free
Segments of the text selected by researcher or auto-coding.
Create Free Quotation
Free quotations are those quotations which are not linked to a code.
Later on, the proper code for them will be created.
Right click on a selected area and select “create free quotation” or select “” in the
shortcut bar located in the left side.
How to create Memos?
Spaces for reflection, analysis, integration, and interpretation.
Memos can be linked to codes, quotations, and even other memos.
A smart way to visualize your analysis.
Connect codes to codes and quotations to quotation through meaning and
Represent hypotheses & findings.
There are 2 types of network links:
1) Weak-Link: linkages between elements created through the normal analytical
2) Strong –Link: Graphic representation of a semantic type linking codes to codes
(quotations to quotations) through specific meaning- researcher’s understanding
of the problem.
How to create weak-link network?
Right click on the code and choose “Open network”
In new windows, right click on the code and select “Import common
Neighbors” from “Import Neighbors”.
Go to Display -> Quotation verbosity -> Full text
How to create Strong-link network?
Drag another code into the Network view.
Click on one code to reveal the red dot, drag it and drop onto another code.
Change the arrows by Flip link option on right click.
How to create Strong-link network?
If you want to hide some linkages just right click and select “remove from
view”, DON’T Delete it.
You can import existing nodes -> Nodes -> Import Nodes
How to save network?
Go to “Network” -> “Save as Graphic file” (As picture)
Go to “Network” -> “Print Network view” (Changeable)
How to create output?
There are 2 types of output : qualitative and quantitative
(Out put in Word)
How to create quantitative output?
Enhanced potential for
analysis ( especially in
finding the quotation count)
(Out put in Excel)