Strategies in Teaching Secondary Analysis of Qualitative Data


  • Louise Corti ESDS Qualidata
  • Libby Bishop ESDS Qualidata



qualitative data, data archives, ESDS Qualidata, secondary analysis, teaching and learning, research methods


Unlike for quantitative approaches, the published literature on secondary analysis of qualitative data is sparse. Among qualitative researchers there is neither a pervasive culture that exists to encourage the secondary analysis of data nor is there an extensive body of published sources that can help guide or instruct a researcher wishing to understand better the benefits and limitations of re-analysis. So where does the student or novice researcher turn for guidance and training? In this paper we set out ways in which ESDS Qualidata (University of Essex) has sought to facilitate both usage of archived qualitative data and methodological debate among the wider academic communities. We will present an overview of the current published literature and existing training provision for secondary analysis of qualitative data and describe the various approaches to support and training taken by our service. Finally, we will cover the preparation of potentially useful kinds of training materials (teaching datasets, user guides, commentary and exercises) that we believe will help support teachers and learners to incorporate secondary analysis methodology into everyday research culture and practice. URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0501470


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Author Biographies

Louise Corti, ESDS Qualidata

Louise CORTI is currently an Associate Director at the UKDA at the University of Essex, where she is Head of ESDS Qualidata, Outreach and Promotion. In the past she has carried out research in the fields of health, education and survey and panel study methodology. She has taught sociology, social research methods, statistics, qualitative software packages, research & data management at undergraduate, postgraduate and professional level. Her recent publications include various articles on archiving and re-using qualitative data and a virtual tutorial for social research methods. Her current research expertise and interests involve enhancing access to digital qualitative data, XML applications for qualitative data, consent and confidentiality in social research, and the application, use and promotion of social science data in teaching and learning. She holds/has recently held both JISC and ESRC research grants across these areas.

Libby Bishop, ESDS Qualidata

Libby BISHOP is currently a Manager at ESDS Qualidata where she plans, oversees and coordinates the day-to-day work of the section. She also manages the development of ESDS Qualidata Online, especially by selecting collections for enhancement and by writing materials to promote reuse and secondary analysis. She is also helping to develop a framework (DTD), methodology and tools for providing online access to enhanced archived qualitative data resources and has given workshops and conference presentations in these areas. She has over fifteen years experience in qualitative research and research management in academic and non-academic organisations. She has taught sociology, including introductory qualitative methodology. Her current research project uses secondary analysis of several Qualidata collections to explore recent historical shifts in the use and status of processed foods.




How to Cite

Corti, L., & Bishop, L. (2005). Strategies in Teaching Secondary Analysis of Qualitative Data. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 6(1).



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