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Tutorials: Developing a coding scheme

The links below give a focussed route into the material in the case studies and other resources on each aspect of analysis.

Below that is a listing of all the case studies which can be followed through as a narrative.


Loudspeaker icon Initial template construction

  1. Learn how to choose from the many approaches to qualitative analysis.
  2. Understand the value of collaboration and supervisors in getting started with coding.
  3. Learn the role of reflection in coming to terms with possible personal biases in coding.
Loudspeaker icon Code generation and initial coding
  1. Code ideas come from: the data themselves, pre-existing theory, your own research questions.
  2. Your own background might bias your ideas for codes.
  3. Use not just descriptive codes but also those that are analytical, theoretical or interpretative.

Movie icon Constructing the first version of the initial template

Frances talks about the sources for ideas about coding that contributed to the construction of her first coding scheme or template.

Movie icon Nicola talks about coding and revising the coding using Atlas.ti.

  • Approx 9 mins. On codng
  • Approx. 11 mins. Revising coding
  • Approx. 19 mins. Using Atlas.ti and a PC in coding


Loudspeaker iconDiscourse analysis of selected literature and transcription

Sally describes her use of discourse analysis to examine the literature on entrepreneurship and about how she transcribed her interviews and how she used this to start her analysis


Loudspeaker iconCoding

Sally talks about the coding she undertook as part of her analysis.


Videos from an interview with Prof. Nigel King

Movie icon Constructing the Template

Use the template to organise codes or themes; arrange themes into a hierarchy; generate themes before data analysis or during data analysis

Movie icon Coding

How big coded sections need to be; same passages can be coded to more than one code; leave space in transcripts to make notes about coding; use code definitions

Movie icon Descriptive and interpretative coding


Videos from lectures by Graham R Gibbs

Movie icon Bryman's 4 stages of analysis

Movie icon Thematic Coding

Movie icon What can codes be about?

Movie icon What is coding for?

The Grounded Theory approach to analysis

Movie icon Core elements of Grounded Theory

Movie icon Stages of coding: 1. Open Coding

Movie icon Approaches to Open Coding, Line-by-line Coding


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Narratives of the cases

FRCase 1 - Frances Rogers

Undertook a PhD in social psychology on the topic of "The Personal Experience of Whiplash Injury". For analysis she used Template Analysis, a form of thematic analysis that involves coding the text.

Highlights of this case are:

  • Developing a research idea
  • Identifying a social scientific (theoretical) explanation of what was found
  • Changing the code template (the code hierarchy) in the development of the analysis


ETCase 2 - Emma Turley

Undertook a PhD in social psychology with the title "‘It started when I barked once when I was licking his boots!’: A phenomenological study of the experience of bondage, discipline, dominance & submission, and sadism & masochism (BDSM)." The research explored the lived experience of participating in consensual bondage, discipline, dominance & submission and sadism & masochism (BDSM). Traditionally, psychologists have researched this phenomenon from an external perspective, conceptualising it as pathological. By employing a phenomenological approach, Emma understoood this multifaceted phenomenon from the inside, by listening to the voices of those who engage in BDSM.

SJCase 3 - Sally Jones

Undertook a PhD in education and business studies on the topic of "The gendering of entrepreneurship in higher education : a Bourdieuian approach". For her approach to analysis she used an essentially grounded theory approach.


NSCase 4 - Nicola Swan

Undertook a PhD in business studies on the topic of"Corporate Interventions in Rural Communities that lead to Sustainable Development". She undertook a thematic analysis of interview and ethnographic data with the help of Atlas.ti software.

Nicola's research examines the practicalities of how companies address their corporate responsibilities in partnership and taking a long term approach. In many cases they don't act directly in the society, but rather by giving support to other organisations that are working with communities. Typically these are NGOs - non-governmental organisations - such as charities and development companies which are already working in the field to address social and environmental needs. Nicola realised that there was little evidence in the business and social literature of what the outcomes of these interventions look like from a community perspective.

KKCase 5 - Karl Kitching

Undertook a PhD in education on the topic of "Justifying school- and self : an ethnography on race, recognition and viability in Ireland". He undertook an ethnographic investigation of a school in Ireland and analysed his data using discourse analysis.

Highlights of the case are:

  • Why use discourse analysis?
  • Identifying what cases and examples to look at
  • A detailed discourse analysis of some short passages from an interview.