Qualitative Research Methods & Tools

General recommendations


Voice to Text - Issues 

Transcription is not the same as dictation. Unfortunately, for now there are not great tools that will automatically transcribe your audio.  Automatic tools are not good at handling more than one voice (which most interviews and conversations are!).  There are tools you can use to provide a first pass at getting your audio into text form by using dictation software (e.g. Dragon Naturally Speaking/Dragon Dictate) in conjunction with transcription software.  For an example, see this page on how to use Dragon with InqScribe.


Tool Recommendations

Transcribing from within QDA Software

Many of the big QDA (qualitative data analysis software) packages have a transcription module.  For example, NVIVO has both a fee service to transcribe your audio OR you can do it yourself using its transcribe feature (read more and/or watch this video).

Inqscribe Transcription Software

Is available on two UNM Library PCs in the Centennial Science and Engineering Library's DEN 2.

Fee Transcription Services

More info coming soon!

Further Reading

Evers, J.C., (2010). From the past into the future: how technological developments change our ways of data collection, transcription and analysis. Forum: Qualitative Social Research,12(1).

Investigates the idea of skipping the transcription step in qualitative research and exploring other possibilities related to using QDA tools.


Transcription/Recording Foot Pedals

The library owns four INFINITY USB-2 foot control pedals. Two are available at the Centennial Science & Engineering Library and the other two are at the Zimmerman Library - ask for them at the Service Desks,  These work with many transcription software packages and allow you to keep your hands free to type while at the same time using the foot pedal to stop,start, rewind, etc. your audio file.

As the foot pedal's website states:

It can be used with dozens of software packages for both transcribing and recording. It works with just about any transcription program. One of the questions we get all the time is: will this foot pedal work with Windows Media Player. Answer: there is no usb foot pedal that will work with Windows Media Player. It's just the way Windows is set up. The computer transcription foot pedals all need software to run. That is why there is purpose made transcription software. The software gives the USB foot pedal commands such as rewind, back space and play. The ability to start-stop, rewind the transcription audio files allows you to free your hands to type the dictation files. 

Recording Tools

More information coming soon!

Audio Software

More information coming soon!

Online Survey Software

Although surveys are generally used in quantitative research, if you are using mixed methods or including open ended questions in a survey, you might want to use software to administer and provide basic reports on your data.