Choosing an appropriate CAQDAS package
We provide a range of information about CAQDAS packages and these materials are designed to help researchers make informed choices between packages, to plan for their effective use and to manipulate their tools in creative ways to meet methodological and practical needs.
You can access the material from the above diagram by either viewing the links below or by downloading the PDF files from the main 'Working Papers' page.
In order to help you decide between software the CAQDAS Networking Project also provide a series of (FREE) Software Planning Seminars where we raise some of the issues you may need to consider, and discuss how some of the software programs differ in the way they handle such aspects.
See also Lewins & Silver (2007) Using Software in Qualitative Research : A Step-by-Step Guide, Sage Publications, London
- CAQDAS definition
- Choosing a CAQDAS Package: overview of common functionality
- ATLAS.ti 6 Review
- Digital Replay System (DRS) Review
- HyperRESEARCH Review
- MAXqda 2007 Review
- MiMeG Review
- NVivo 8 Review
- Transana 2.4 Review
- QDA Miner 3.2 Review
- Qualrus Review
List of content on this pages:
i) CAQDAS Definition : our description and use of the term CAQDAS
ii) Choosing a CAQDAS package : a summary of software as a starting point for thinking about which package may be most suited to the type of project and data you are working with and the way you like to work.
iii) Software Reviews : up-to-date comparative information about selected CAQDAS packages. Reviews are currently available for ATLAS.ti 6, Digital Replay System (DRS), MAXqda 2007, MiMeG, NVivo 8, Transana
The Choosing a CAQDAS Package document offers a summary of software for managing textual or qualitative data as a starting point for thinking about which one may be most suited to the type of project and data you are working with and the way you like to work. It focusses mainly on those traditionally categorised as CAQDAS packages and highlights some key distinguishing elements in order to provide you with an early impression of each package. It is meant to be read ahead of the individual software reviews.
The reviews provide up-to-date comparative information about selected CAQDAS packages. We review both commercially available and free/open source products and aim to raise awareness about the less well-known options as well as the leading packages which are well established in the field. The individual software reviews are intended to be read in conjunction with the ‘Choosing a CAQDAS Package Working Paper’ which provides a more general commentary of common CAQDAS functionality. Review documents do not provide an exhaustive account of all the features and functions provided by the software but are designed to highlight some of its distinguishing elements. The Comment section at the end details our opinions on certain aspects of functionality and usability.
In writing these documents we aim to address the most frequently asked questions that we at the CAQDAS Networking Project receive. We recommend that you also visit the Software Developer websites as part of your decision-making process, where you can access and download demonstration versions.
We always welcome feedback concerning the relevance and usefulness of our resources. Indeed, many of the materials we provide are the direct result of repeated requests from students and qualitative researchers. So if you have downloaded any of the materials above please email us with your comments.