for harnessing CAQDAS packages powerfully

Developed by Nicholas Woolf and Christina Silver

A method for harnessing CAQDAS packages powerfully, independent of methodology, software package, or mode of learning. It is not a new method of data analysis but a way of making clear what CAQDAS experts unconsciously already do.

Five Level QDA is a trademark owned by Christina Teal and Nicholas H. Woolf, registered as European Community Trademark Registration Number 015596976, and United States Trademark Serial Number 87080134


Mastering qualitative software analysis with the Five-Level QDA®method

2 day workshops in London, UK in early 2018 focusing on using the Five Level QDA method to ensure your use of software is driven by the objectives of your research project.

These small workshops will enable you to develop the expertise you need to produce high quality analysis, whatever your methodology.

Follow the links below to book your space on the workshops.

18-19 Jan : Mastering NVivo with the Five-Level QDA® Method 

12-13 Feb : Mastering ATLAS.ti with the Five-Level QDA® Method 

15-16 Mar : Mastering MAXQDA with the Five-Level QDA® Method 


QDA = Qualitative Data Analysis

CAQDAS = Computer Assisted Qualitative Data Analysis


QDA Faculty


QDA Students


QDA Researchers

Harnessing CAQDAS Blog

How many codes are needed in a qualitative analysis?

How many codes are needed in a qualitative analysis?
By Christina Silver on Feb 22, 2018 at 08:53 AM in CAQDAS commentary

There is no answer to this perennial question – not even any guidelines. You need as many codes as you need – in other words, however many are needed to capture what’s going on in the data in relation to your analytic focus and research objectives. How many depends on what you’re using the codes to represent, how you derive them, and how you intend to use them in the analysis. I’ve done substantial projects with as few as 22 codes, and others that required several hundred.


My first thoughts on the Five-Level QDA textbooks

My first thoughts on the Five-Level QDA textbooks
By Five Level QDA on Feb 06, 2018 at 07:29 AM in Five-Level QDA issues & ideas

Ann Lewins has been using and teaching CAQDAS packages since 1994 and she pioneered the development of institutional support for their use in the UK, helping to create the CAQDAS Networking Project. Here she shares her first thoughts on the Five-Level QDA textbooks.

Five-Level QDA is a new teaching and learning initiative that aims to fill a huge gap by addressing some of the major dilemmas facing especially new qualitative researchers


Methods matter - illustrating quality in qualitative analysis and the role of CAQDAS

Methods matter - illustrating quality in qualitative analysis and the role of CAQDAS
By Christina Silver on Jan 06, 2018 at 11:28 AM in CAQDAS commentary

Professor Debra Jackson’s post about the Journal of Child & Family Studies’ intention to from now on only review and publish quantitative papers and the discussion it prompted on Twitter indicates how important it is for qualitative researchers to fully describe their methods and illustrate the quality of their analysis. Using dedicated CAQDAS packages to facilitate analysis won’t necessarily result in higher quality outputs, but they can be used to illustrate process and rigour, and thereby have an important role to play.


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