Queries help you to explore your data and investigate hunches as you progress through your project. You can:

  • Find and analyze the words or phrases in your files and nodes.
  • Ask questions and find patterns based on your coding and check for coding consistency among team members.

Create quick and simple queries to get a sense of what is happening in the data, or build detailed queries for a more focused perspective. Move forward with queries visualizations

What are the different queries?

Query Description Examples

Text Search

Find all occurrences of a word, phrase, or concept.

  • Find the words policy or legislation and code them at the new node government.
  • Find content where the terms rising sea level and property occur within 20 words of each other.
  • Find all references to river, and find similar words such as stream, Nile, watercourse.

Word Frequency

Find the most frequently occurring words or concepts.

  • Look for the most frequently occurring words in a set of interviews.
  • Find the most frequently occurring themes in a document—where similar words are grouped into concepts.


Find all content coded at selected nodes, a combination of nodes, or a combination of nodes and attributes.

  • What do property developers say about rising sea levels?—run a query to gather content that has been coded at rising sea levels and at cases with the attribute property developer.
  • Show me where content coded at coral bleaching is near content coded at rising sea temperatures.

Matrix Coding

Find the coding intersections or co-occurrence of themes in your project and display this in a matrix.

  • Compare the positive and negative attitudes of interview participants to a range of local council services.
  • Explore how tourism is related to a range of themes including water quality, real estate development and environmental change.


Check how coding is distributed across the cases, or different types of cases in your project.

  • Check how often interview respondents refer to a particular topic or issue.
  • Check how many interview respondents (with particular attributes) refer to a topic or theme.



Use a compound query to

  • Combine a text search query with a coding query
  • Search for two words that occur in the same paragraph (or other specified context).
  • Find content where the term rising sea temperature precedes content coded at coral.
  • Find content where the words habitat and sustainable occur in the same paragraph.

Coding comparison


Compare coding done by two users or two groups of users.

This query measures the 'inter-rater reliability' or the degree of agreement for coding done by selected users.

Compare coding between users in different locations or from different disciplines who are coding the same data in order to check the consistency of their coding.



Find items that are associated in a particular way with other items. The items could be associated by coding, attribute value, relationships, 'see also' links or maps.

  • Find the nodes that I've used to code Interview with Franz and Interview with Vikram.
  • Which interviews have been coded at wind power and solar power?
  • Which files or cases have a certain set of attribute values—for example, who are the survey participants from Riverside and Mountain View?
  • List any 'relationship' nodes that include water purification.
  • Find any maps that include homeowners or farmers.

Create a query

On the Explore tab, in the Query group, click the icon for the query you want to create.

Options of the Query ribbon.

For detailed information on creating different types of queries, refer to the following pages:

Query results are discarded when you close your project. You can add the query to your project to run again, and you can save the results of some queries. Manage query results

Create a query with dynamic scope

When you create a query that you want to run at regular intervals—for example, a Coding query to see how your coding is evolving—it is a good idea to use a Search Folder as the scope of your query.

Search Folders contain items that currently meet specified search criteria—as your project changes, the items in the Search Folder change too.

For example, you could create a Search Folder that contains only files in the file classification Interview, and use the Search Folder as the scope of a coding query. Every time you run the query, only files that meet the Search Folder's criteria (have the classification Interview) will be in scope.