Transcription options

Transcription is a challenge most researchers face at some stage. While transcribing your own data gives you good familiarity with the material, it is impractical if there is a large volume of it.

Machine-transcription with NVivo Transcription

NVivo Transcription is an automated transcription service that is fully integrated with NVivo.

While working in NVivo, you can open an audio or video source and send it to NVivo Transcription. You'll be prompted to sign-up for an account, then you can upload the media (securely) and have it machine-transcribed. You can then download the transcript into your project and continue working. NVivo Transcription

Do it yourself

If you decide to transcribe the material yourself, you can play the media in NVivo and transcribe it as you listen.

You can adjust the audio speed and use shortcut keys to make things easier. To really free things up, you might want to use a foot pedal. Create transcripts

If the structure of conversation is important to you (maybe you're a sociolinguist or phenomenologist), then you'll probably want your interviews or focus groups fully transcribed. If you're on a fact-finding mission (not really interested in the subtleties of expression) then maybe taking notes is all you need to do.

Say 'no' to transcripts

Since you can code your audio or video sources directly, maybe you don't need transcripts at all. For example:

  1. Listen to your interviews.
  2. Each time you hear participants talk about food additives, select the section on the timeline and code it at the node Food Additives.
  3. Open the node Food Additives and listen to all the coded snippets in one place.
  4. Make a memo to summarize your findings. Memos

Depending on your research goals and methodology this approach may work for you. The only draw-back is that you can't use Text search or Word Frequency queries to find content in the interviews (although you can search and code the memos you make).

I don't need synchronized transcripts

Maybe you already have your interviews transcribed as Word documents and don't want them synchronized with a media file. This is perfectly fineā€”just import the transcripts as document sources and get coding.

Plan ahead for auto coding

The structure of a transcript can facilitate auto coding in NVivo - a really useful feature if you want to get your material organized quickly.

For example, if you have a transcript column that identifies each speaker, then you can use auto coding to gather everything a particular person says. Similarly, if you have interview documents with headings that identify each question, then you can auto code based on heading styles and gather all the answers to each question. Automatic coding techniques