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Simply Powerful Tools for Qualitative Research

The Long Road to the Dissertation

For doctorial students engaged in or beginning their dissertations who wish to follow along on another student's insigtful and often humorous efforts through their dissertation, we recommend viewing "The Long Road to the Dissertation," a blog by Elyse Pratt-Ronco, a doctoral canidate (now with a Ph.D.!) in the Applied Developmental and Educational Psychology program at Boston College. In particular, her entry enttitled "The Code," she states

"Now we move to the software. Now, some traditional qualitative researchers say that one should not use software for data analysis. It should all be done by hand with hi-lighters and scissors and pages and pages of paper. I disagree. I use HyperResearch which is a program developed by a professor at BC. Basically it is a tool that organizes the data, it doesn't actually do any analysis. It does allow me to select portions of text and assign codes, and then go back and look at one code and see all of the related text from all of the interviews. This feature is invaluable in the writing. I recommend HyperResearch to anyone doing qualitative data analysis. You can also use photos, video, and sound in the program. I used it on my last study and found it to be amazing."

Her blog entry entitled "150 Things Not to Do At the Defense (Okay, 61 Things)" is sure to put a smile on doctoral candidates' faces!


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