Monday, 7 July 2008

Template analysis course

British Academy of Management (BAM) ran a workshop on analysing qualitative data, using template analysis.

The workshop leader, Nigel King, compared template analysis with narrative analysis and content analysis, suggesting they are all forms of thematic analysis. The blurb for the workshop says:
Template analysis is a particular style of thematic analysis that can be used with any form of qualitative textual data. It seeks to strike a balance between the entirely bottom-up approach of Grounded Theory and the more structured, top-down approach of techniques such as Matrix Analysis.
It emphasises the use of hierarchical coding, such that themes are divided into sub-themes, usually with between three and five levels of coding. Template analysis works particularly well in studies where the perspectives of different groups need to be compared and contrasted, and is well-suited to many qualitative projects in organisational and management research.
The workshop covered:
  • overview & introduction & preliminary coding
  • clustering themes & developing an initial template
  • modifying your template & using it in interpreting the data
  • quality issues & writing up
Analysing data in groups was helpful because discussion queried and refined codes so I got more from it than just looking at Nigel King's web site on template analysis, though it's a contentful site that I recommend. The case study allowed us to develop an initial template from two interviews, which we then used on a third interview so we could see how we would want to modify the template.

The quality issues engendered a discussion on working alone or in groups, as well as indicating something of how we would create an audit trail.

If you're using qualitative analysis, this course is worth going on whether or not you're going to use templates.

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